Last Friday was the most brutal hike I've ever been on. It took almost 5 hours to go a little over 5 miles, roughly 3000 vertical feet. The first three miles were done in about 2 hours, then the final 2 miles took at least another hour each, with the final being the steepest, deepest, coldest, windiest, longest, and most painful. Sharp pain was jutting from both hips joints with every move, enough to cause screams on several occasions. If my snow shoe sinks one more time I swear I'm going to throw something.. wait, bad idea, must conserve energy.. Every known mind focusing, endorphin-producing self-motivational tactic was effectively deployed, I think everyone would agree they "left it all on the trail." We're .1 miles from the cabin, an hour ago you could see it from across the meadow and thought you'd be there in 20 minutes. I measure my left steps are about 8", my right about 12"... I'd hit the wall in just about every way.
Then Dave says "hey man let me carry that snowboard for you- you don't look so good." Ok twist my arm, I've never been one to turn down a strap when needed, and at this point it felt like my three strikes & out was about an hour ago... (that was a wheeling analogy dudes