1. Pre-Trip Journal
Departure day is 6/14, after work. Supposed to meet David G. in Yosemite
to drop off my car.
It's 1:30AM, and I'm trying to get to bed. Took a break to watch the Matrix
I can't believe that today I came out of K-Mart with a big smile on my
face because I'd found white nylon socks. But I did! White is supposed
to be anti-fungal. Nylon is testing really well for long hikes.
I'm trying to get my food together for the JMT and can't imagine what
it's like for the PCT.
Trying to get going. The plan is to be in KM by 1pm. Since I over slept,
it made it hard.
Richard S. awakened me at 5:30AM, half an hour after I was supposed to
be at Patrick's place to pick him up. David G. and Jean S. were expecting
us the night before in Yosemite, with knowledge that we might not get
there 'till morning.
The morning had lots of energy. We zoomed a path across the state, leaving
Santa Cruz for points east. The back roads that looked so direct on the
map proved frustratingly slow, especially when behind a local. Even with
free reign, the old foothill roads were laid on top of the hills in the
slow way of a long-past era.
David and Jean were content reading in their Hogden Meadows campsite when
we arrived. David was impressed with the nearby bare-chested boys.
We headed to the Valley for last-minute stuff, site-seeing, and regrouping.
We left my Subaru behind in backpacker parking and hit the village.
Our next stop was a place on the way out of the park for lunch and for
David and Jean to play in the river. Jean agreed to cut my hair and did
a pretty good job of giving me what I wanted. I took the scissors to it
to finish it off, but I couldn't have done it without her help. I secretly
chuckled when they served us dehydrated soup in a cup.
drive through Tuolumne, with a brief stop for Richard to stash Heet that
we had bought in Los Banos, amazed David and Jean. They'd never seen Tuolmne
and found it magical.
The East Side went on and on as we headed south. We stopped at or near
June Lakes for dinner. I was officially behind schedule, but found time
at the stop to do some of the remaining tasks on my list. The bright yellow
cord went onto my new tarp. Richard and I practiced setting it up in the
The Eurovan flew down 395 for seeming hours in the darkness of a new moon.
I was exhausted and had had a long day. David was diligent about keeping
us going. We eventually stopped in a campsite Richard knew in Lone Pine.
I slept outside. Jean slept below and David and Richard slept above. I
was having some emotions about David's seduction of Richard, but I guess
I knew it would happen. But I also knew Richard, so I knew David wasn't
going to get far. Turns out I was right.
This campsite was odd. It was definitely desert, but a rambunctious stream
ran through it. I suspect the stream was complements of the City of Los
I don't remember whether I slept well or not. I know morning came quickly.
Awoke in Lone Pine. Was stung by a scorpion on my right middle finger
as I picked up my packed pack.
David, Jean, Richard and I headed to Kennedy Meadows. Saw lots of purply-pink
flowers literally carpeting the burned hills through the last part of
our drive. Meadow Ed greeted us and we pulled the Eurovan into a nearby
spot for lunch. Met Chuck and Dave, thru-hikers. Richard and I went through
my pack and I got rid of some stuff. It was still heavy. By this time
I realized that I'd left my orthotics back in my car in Yosemite Valley.
1 or 1:30, I was ready to go and set out after posing for some pictures.
Earlier we'd seen a cute Boy Scout leader with a bunch of scouts and other
leaders. All the gay boys in our group had big-time gaydar on him. I made
a note to look for him later. When I did see him, he was too far away
to connect with. The 20 or so boy scouts and leaders were assaulting the
Richard was staying behind in Kennedy Meadows for Lori Joy who would be
arriving later that day. I was excited to get on the trail and was hoping
that in the day difference between Richard & LJ's departure and mine,
I could do Whitney, and that they'd be in Crabtree Meadows when I descended.
Then, we would hike together as long as I could keep up. That was the