The Six Wanderers
Tiger Cave Temple Mountain
Today’s adventure is one I still can’t believe we managed to put under our belt! I’m usually a pretty organized person and love to know the details of any activities before hand but ever since we’ve got here, I kinda felt like all the prepping wasn’t really worth it so we’ve mostly just been winging it... and it probably was for the best in this case or we might not have been courageous enough to try it if we would have known before hand what we were getting ourselves into!
Jeremie and I have agreed on some kind of plan where he goes to work(checking on things back home and getting ready for the upcoming pool season) on Tuesdays and Thursdays and then we spend the other days exploring... so off we went exploring the Tiger Cave Temple (Wat Thumsua).
It was a short 10 minutes drive from our house and all the while as we were driving, our taxi driver was giving us more and more info on the place, telling us that the view at the top was amazing but that we also had to climb over a 1000 steps in the mountain in order to get there....
WHHHHATTTTTT? What the heck had we gotten ourselves into... we had four young kiddos tagging along, one of which has made a permanent residence on my back while we travel... and that goes without saying that as much as we appreciate the nice weather, we do get really hot and sweaty not being used to it that much already.... would we dare brave the mountain or just visit the temple that was also cool enough nestled in a cave at the base of the mountain...that could do the trick, right???? Well...not according to my hubby!
We did visit the temple at the base of the mountain and read about the history of the cave, but we also decided that we had enough water and enough will power to make it to the top of the mountain!
It was a rough start... I managed to climb the first 400 steps with Norah on my back but by then I started feeling dizzy and could see myself fainting and rolling down those 400 steps and having to start all over again so Jeremie offered to take her, and our backpack and our camera...
I kept asking him if we would make it... he was drenched in sweat and kept telling me that he was looking for a way to stay in shape while he was missing out on his hockey league back home so he was more than happy to carry all of our stuff and our baby...
We had to stop many times just to catch our breath and make sure we kept hydrated. Finlay was always at least 30 steps ahead of us... he really enjoyed the challenged, that crazy kid...
Zoey did amazingly well also, keeping a slower pace but still climbing without too much complaint...and last but not least, Keilan also managed to climb all 1000 steps by himself! He was dripping with sweat and red as a tomato by the time we got to the top but for him that was probably the biggest challenge of his four year old life!
We kept passing the same people, or they kept passing us and some kind of communion, I guess, happened as we kept on encouraging each other to take just a few more steps, or to sit and catch our breath just for a while... by the time we got to the top, we were all very proud of each other and of ourselves!
The view was well worth it! We felt like spending the whole day up there, part of it because we didn’t want to have to face all those steps again but mostly because we enjoyed the sense of accomplishment and communion we had found through that whole challenge!
Hopefully we can share a bit of the sentiment through these pictures....
After a while, and before the sun would become unbearable, we decided to refill our water bottles and make our way back down.
The descent was indeed easier than the climb but our legs were so sore, they were trembling all over! We had to hold on to the rails as some steps were very narrow and some steps very tall. I managed to carry Norah all the way down while Jeremie carried our stuff and Keilan part of the way.
We had no encounter with monkeys on the way down, but Finn who had one of his elephant keychain stollen by a monkey on the way up found a remaining elephant ear on our way back... he kept it as a souvenir!
Once our feet were finally back on solid ground, we just sat at a nearby table for a while, watching the monkeys play around with an old coconut shell...
And then realized we were sooooo hungry!!!!!! We walked a bit, found a nice little restaurant with AC, ordered a bunch of refreshing drinks, had a whole lot of food and then some ice cream and then spent the rest of the day watching Netflix back at our house!
But hey, we’ve conquered the Tiger Cave Temple Mountain, we’ve ascended 309 meters vertically along a 600 meters path comprise of 1260 steps all of that in a 35 degrees Celsius weather with four young kiddos in tow... I think we did pretty good!