Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Gondola Ride: A way to end 2010

I haven't done anything special on New Year's day because I'm still hang-up with my last few weeks experience before the end of 2010.

I dared myself with my friends to a gondola ride in Banff National park.  It was the scariest 8 minutes lift of my life to one of the highest peak in the Rockies --The Sulphur Mountain.  From 698 meters (2,2982 ft) to 2,281 m (7,486 ft) summit terminal.  I thought I conquered my fear of heights, but I underestimated the whole thing. I was frozen and trembling inside when I realized how high we were and how deep the pit of the mountain terrain was. Thankfully my friend was entertaining. He told hilarious stories while we were on the small 4-seater carriage being lifted from and to the main terminal.

I'm glad I did it though, or I'd never capture this spectacular sight.

Then a few days later, I found myself on another thrill ride.  The gondola peak to peak ride from whistler mountain of 1,530 m (5,020 ft) to blackcomb mountains of 1,609 m (5,280 ft).  Not so high though compared to Sulphur mountain in Banff.  But this one was 11 minutes ride, and approximately 45 minutes total cabin trip from peak to peak and back.

This didn't scare me to death because the gondola was huge and had a capacity of 7-20 people depending on the kind of cabin.   And who would be afraid of the ride if you see the skiers below racing through the snowy slopes of the mountain. 

I couldn't believe that I didn't feel the slightest butterfly in my stomach while on board the gondola. Because the whole space was full and dynamic, that I couldn't find time to feel my fear. Specially, when we watched the tiny creatures gliding and sprinting on the ice from above.  They looked like little ants spawling everywhere.

On our way back, our cabin was jammed-pack with skiers with all their heavy gears on.  Probably going back to the station after a ski day. So all my attention was on them that I realized our gondola trip was over.
I'm still awed looking at the photos of our trip to Banff and Whistler.  It's one collective adventure that's worthy of a travelogue kit.

Now, I wonder what  will be my next adventure before this year ends.  Well, it's too early to tell. But I have plans in mind...Nope, not bungee jumping!