Search this blog

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

PCT - Day 60: 6/17/2018 - Accept, Adapt, Appreciate

Trail miles: 19.1 from 951.5 - 970.6
Miles walked: 21.4

It’s a bit of a bummer that on Fathers Day, I didn’t have a cell signal. I would have loved to talk to my Dad and hopefully hear from my daughter. But, I’m currently at the mercy of the trail. Happy Fathers Day Dad! I love you!

The morning was really cold. Frost covered my tent and the entire meadow we had camped near. 

Frosty morning

Since we’re in Yosemite National Park, I assumed there wouldn’t be too many creeks to ford. I guess I was thinking that the NPS would’ve put bridges in place or something. I was wrong, I probably forded five or six creeks today. The most adventurous one being Return Creek which was about thigh high with a decent current behind it.

Ziploc had hiked ahead of me since I was still moving at a slightly slower pace due to my ankle problem. While I was walking right after the ford of Spiller Creek, I nearly had a heart attack when a deer jumped across the trail about three feet in front of my face. He then stopped on the other side and looked back at me like I was the one who startled him.

Around 9:30 am, I caught up with Ziploc since she was sitting on a dead log drying her tent. She wasn’t in a good mood. She was getting frustrated with the nonstop challenges the Sierra throws at us; steep ascents/descents, trails that are rocky, muddy, or snowy, and constant creek and stream crossings that keep one’s feet wet most of the day. I tried to encourage her and repeated a mantra that I’ve been trying to remember myself.

Accept. Adapt. Appreciate.1

I can’t take credit for that, I read it in some other hiking related blog, but I love it and think it’s a great attitude to have towards the outdoors in general.  

To add to Ziploc’s misery, a couple hours later, I caught up again to find her trying to extract a large piece of metal from her shoe. She had stepped on this sharp rusty object and was lucky it didn’t puncture her foot in addition to her shoe. I was chuckling on the inside as I removed the thing from her shoe.

Nail in shoe

About an hour later, I walked up to a creek to ford on our way up Benson Pass. I reluctantly dropped my pack and switched from my dry trail runners to my Crocs to ford this creek. That’s when I saw Ziploc bashing around off trail but still on the same side of the creek.

I asked her what she was doing and she replied “Building a bridge”.

I laughed as I walked across the creek, getting wet only up to my knee. She then threw a log into the creek in attempt to build a “bridge” or at least a way to step across with dry feet. The log just floated down stream. I couldn’t contain my laughter anymore. Seeing that log she threw just float away was too much. I roared with laughter as she was being a good sport about it even if she was pouting a bit. She finally reluctantly took her shoes off to cross.

On the way up the pass I was crawling. Fatigue was getting the best of me. The views from this pass only really got good when descending the north side. That’s where I passed Smedberg Lake which I thought about camping at but ultimately decided to push a couple more miles to lose a little elevation. Mostly, I was hoping I would be warmer down a few hundred feet.

Ziploc wanted to do a 22+ mile day, and I simply didn’t want to or need to.  My ankle needs rest and I am carrying plenty of food to where I don’t need to hurry through this beautiful area. 

She kept going when I stopped to camp near a waterfall. I was surrounded on three sides by huge granite walls.

I am always amazed that somehow trees can grow from tiny ledges on these stone walls.

 I treated myself to my first PCT campfire as a way of celebrating day sixty and Fathers Day.

I am camped alone.  I had time after my 2000 calorie dinner to just think about home. I miss my wife. I miss my daughter and my step-son. I miss my dogs. I wonder if my youngest dog will even remember me when I get home.

1. For more information on the source of the three A's see:

1 comment:

  1. I would have loved to talk to you on Father's day. I was somewhat bummed out. I did do a small warm up hike - just 3.5 miles with my ex boss. It was the first time I have hiked since I hurt my back back in April. I was thinking of you. Today (Jun 20), I was working in a cell phone dead area when you called and I was really bummed about that too.

    We will make contact. I need some advice on my upcoming long distant hike.

    I noticed a number of comments from people who follow your blog. They,and I, are very pleased you continued it. It is a unique, open, perspective on the good, bad, and ugly on the trail.

    Miss you and wish your ankle holds up.