Day 50: CS1004 to CS1028 (24.1 miles - 1027.9)
Updated: Aug 26, 2019
June 26, 2016 - Woke up early, 5am, in hopes to beat the mosquitos before they would wake up. Not too many out so I didn’t have to rush too fast. The real reason to get an early start was to get to my next resupply, Kennedy Meadows Resort, 13 miles up trail.
I knew it was going to be a hard 13 as I had a big mountain to climb before getting to Sonora Pass and the highway to hitch the 10 miles to Kennedy Meadows North.
The first 5 were all uphill and not too bad for the first half then it got steep as the trail headed up to the ridge. There was a good bit of snow covering the switchbacks so I had to pull out the mircospikes and ice axe and go vertical. It was slow going and hard but fun. Had I mailed home my axe back in Mammoth like a lot of people did I would have been in trouble seeing as I only had the one trekking pole.
Once on the ridge it was a very nice hike. There were a few patches of snow which made things a little difficult at times but nothing I couldn’t handle. I even got to do a few glissades which is always fun.
Then the real fun began coming down the other side towards Sonora Pass. There was lots of snow cover on the north side of the mountain so I was hiking on some steep snow. There were a few times had I not had an ice axe I don’t know how I would have gotten down safely. There were some spots I had to glissade, makes going down quicker but I had to watch out for the rocks sticking out through the snow. Had I slipped on those steep sections like I almost did I would have fallen down and most likely broken something.
At the bottom I made it to the highway and Sonora Pass. As soon as I arrived there were several people hanging out. Right away someone offered me a coke and before I could even finish it another guy walked up asking if anyone wanted to go to Kennedy Meadows Resort. I jumped up fast and got in the back of his truck and drove down the mountain with 2 other hikers. I got lucky there because sometimes it can be a hard hitch seeing as the resort is 10 miles down the highway then another a mile off the main road. I was all planned to walk that mile but the guy drove us the whole way.
I did my usual resupply but I ate a hamburger for lunch before buying my resupply food, never good to buy while hungry as you buy way too much.
Got everything done that needed to, even mailed home my bear canister which I’m glad to be done with that. I could have mailed my ice axe as well as I didn’t need it anymore but no boxes to fit it in so I just decided to hang onto and mail it home when I get to Lake Tahoe.
Then it was time to start the walking the mile back to the highway. Sooner after I got going a car pulled up and asked if I needed a ride. I told them I’m trying to get to Sonora Pass but they said they can take me about half a mile down the road. I got in and thank them. They didn’t drive me all that far but that’s one less of a half of mile of road walking I didn’t have to do. They even offered me some beer but I was pretty full so I gladly said no thank you. Once I got to the highway I only had to wait about 2 minutes for someone to pick me up.
Got back to Sonora Pass after about 3 hour trail break, exactly as planned and I was off hiking. Soon after Blue walked up so I chatted with him for awhile and told me about the trail magic right back at the Pass. I had decided to pass on it since I got my own trail magic back in town, leaving it for those that need it.
Had a nice uphill first thing but wasn’t too bad. At the top got a great view of the Sierra Mountains of where I had just came from. I even had cell phone coverage so I made a call home. Then I headed downhill to a lot more snow than I thought to be. It’s never fun hiking on snow in the afternoon as it’s way to mushy and end up postholing.
Once past the snow, longer than I thought, it was smooth sailing to camp. Except for the creek crossing where I didn’t want to get my feet wet. I saw a snow bridge just upstream and think about walking over it. However it looked very thin and probable not a good idea but decided to give it a try. As I’m walking over a big chunk of snow starts to break so I jump back as the snow bridge collapsed into the creek, lucky for me I stayed dry. It appeared the only way to cross was to get my feet wet but I thought that I could try and jump across but that could have ended poorly. So I know the smart thing was to just walk through the water and get my feet wet.
Right there at camp was Blue. We ate dinner together and had a nice chat.
Big day plan for tomorrow of 32 miles which is very doable as the trail is suppose to get much easier for awhile.