Conquering The Crunch
I live in the beautiful city of Coquitlam, and we are surrounded by hills, mountains and nature. My latest fitness challenge is to master The Coquitlam Crunch which is a fairly steep ascension up a trail on the cut-line, or under the power lines which serve the area. Although I do not think that walking under that much energy is good for you, I am excited to live close enough to take part in this fitness challenge, and on a daily basis if I want. The walk to get to the base is about 15 minutes and uphill, then it gets intense once you are on The Crunch.
The City of Coquitlam just put in new staircases (437 steps) in areas that are the steepest. We do have an extremely wet climate, and young and old use the trails, so better safe than sorry I am guessing. The great thing is you can still use the gravel portion to one side if you prefer the natural climb or descent.
I first came upon the improvement walking down The Crunch and all that shiny new metal starts to wear at your brain after awhile. You have to take it slow as every so many stairs their is a landing stair, or stair with a difference size, so you can't just barrel down in a solid rhythm as you have to be checking your footing as the stairs change in length. I really hope the City can put a stripping or put paint at the edge of each stair, as then you could speedup your descent being more sure of your footing.
As for going up, I like both the gravel and the stairs and have found intermingling them gives me an interesting work out. I am only getting started and I do need my momentary break along the way to calm my wildly beating heart, but I hope to be able to first walk up the entire way from "Lower Lansdowne to David" without stopping within the next two weeks. Once I've mastered that, I will go higher up the trail. The walk back to my home from the top can be 30 minutes or half that if I jog downhill.
Once I have conquered The Crunch, then I hope to take in the Grouse Grind which is famous in Vancouver for a killer and picturesque workout. Add to that all the great places one can hike in the area or the Vancouver area, there is so much to explore, all the while getting in a great workout.
(Photos: Looking down The Crunch and looking up The Crunch Photos: Robbin Whachell)