October 06, 2011

Grouse Grind

After completing one of Vancouver's classic rites of passages in Stanley Park, I set my sights on Grouse Mountain for my next challenge. The mountain on the North Shore is home to the infamous Grouse Grind, dubbed "Mother Nature's Stairmaster" for its punishing steepness. The grueling hike from the base to the peak of Grouse Mountain covers a height of 853 meters. The trail is 2.9 km long and has 2830 stairs in total, making for an average grade of incline of 17 degrees or 31%.

Wearing black track pants that accentuated my firm buttocks, I blazed through the Grouse Grind in two hours*. I was powered by chocolate bars, several litres of water and Gatorade, and a desire to reach the summit. I enjoyed the view from the top while catching my breath. My t-shirt was soaked with sweat, looking more like a greasy napkin used by a customer at KFC than a fine piece of apparel. Going down the Grind is not allowed, so I descended to ground level via the aerial tramway.

*The official record is 25 minutes and the average person takes 90 minutes to complete the Grouse Grind.


"We don't get a chance to do that many things, and every one should be really excellent. Because this is our life." ~ Steve Jobs