Miles walked: 3.2
I woke up around 4:30 am and couldn’t get back to sleep. I walked from my tent to the front porch of the general store and sat down and enjoyed the really slow WiFi by myself. I wrote a blog post, downloaded updated snow/ford reports regarding the Sierra.
I stumbled half asleep up to the front porch and found my group surrounding a round table. I sat down, chugged a Mountain Dew that I had stashed in my tent the night before. Around 8:30 am we all ordered pancakes for $5 and I opted to add a couple eggs and sausage to my breakfast. I even drank some coffee. For anyone that knows me, drinking coffee is highly unusual. In fact, I would guess it’s been over ten years since my last cup of coffee.
After breakfast it was all about hiker chores; shower, laundry, shopping for missing items, and picking up our resupply packages. We opened our resupply packages around a table, taking turns like a family does on Christmas Day.
HoosierDaddy showed up in a car he borrowed from Yogi who runs a outfitter store a few miles away. He drove two carloads of us over to the store where I bought some food and a buff to hopefully keep my neck from getting sunburn. I also finally got myself some Chili Cheese Frito's that I’ve been craving for 140 miles. Ziploc replaced her broken pack with a new one and picked up new shoes she’d sent herself.
Our group then walked over to Grumpy Bears Retreat for a burger and some drinks. We sat in the shade of a lone tree out front and marveled at truckloads of hikers coming and going. We even got a demonstration of Gandalf’s puffy/rain skirt combo than makes him look like a bearded Swedish Hulk.
|Truck load of hiker tash
Off and on during the day, there were mixed reports about snow conditions. At the outfitter’s shop, to no surprise from me, the reports were serious and almost bordering on fear mongering in my opinion. I guess they are in the business of selling gear, so that makes sense. Again, this is just my opinion. I still think Yogi runs a fair and honest shop. The thing is, I believe it’s all relative. For someone that has never hiked through snow in the mountains, it is probably legitimately scary. For someone more experienced, like myself, it’s probably just second nature. I’ve done lots of winter and spring mountaineering in Colorado and my only real concern is that I will be missing some of the key pieces of gear I would normally carry. That being said, I’m confident I can embrace the suck and overcome whatever the Sierra throws at me and get by without it.
|Gandalf, Chilly Bin, and Opera
I hung out with Chilly Bin and Ziploc eating cheese and crackers, a banana, and a pint of ice cream for dinner. We all cheered and applauded we saw NoMan arrive too. We caught up with him and watched a decent sunset as he proceeded to eat nearly all of a half gallon of vanilla ice cream.
Tomorrow I have to ship some items home. Then I get to figure out how to add an additional day’s worth of food to my already full bear can. This is so I can do a side trip to summit Mt. Whitney for the second time on my way to my next resupply about 86 miles further north. The plan is to either leave tomorrow afternoon or early Thursday morning. I can’t wait. I already miss moving northward.
|Sunset at Kennedy Meadows