PCT 2007 Day 86
Day 86 / 6-19-07 TT 8690
Middle Fork-Clark Lakes Trail – Tuolumne Meadows CG
22.l miles; 942.7 (48.4) total miles; 2832.7 trip miles
70’s sunny hot
Deer count is 48
Marmot count is 45
Pika count is 2
Bear count is 0
Today Ed and I got the ball rolling by 5:45. The best part of the morning was Ed waking up to a bird pecking at his head. He had his head net on and sat up, just then a small bird attacked him. Most likely it was going after the mosquitoes but it pecked him. I burst out laughing when he told me.
We made good time to Thousand Island Lake and saw one deer along the way. It was grazing in the grass along one of the many small ponds. We climbed away from Thousand Island Lake and up and over Island Pass, at 10,200′. As we descended into the low spot between Island Pass and Donohue Pass, the mosquitoes at Rush Creek Trail were unbelievable. As we climbed to Donohue I expected the mosquitoes to lessen but they didn’t. The whole way up the pass I just killed one after another. I actually had a hard time concentrating on hiking. Once up top they went away mostly because of the breeze. I saw my second marmot up top just as I crested the pass.
Ed and I hung out a bit then started the long descent to Tuolumne Meadow. I saw Wounded Knee as I approached the summit but he didn’t stop. We caught him as we went down having a snack. Besides him we saw 77 people today on the trail in 21 miles. It was crazy. Ed and I hiked at almost 4 mph just so we could get out of there. The meadow was 8 miles long and beautiful. I ran out of water with at least 3 miles to go.
Once down and almost to the store, I lost Ed after he walked through a river instead of using the bridge. He didn’t want to climb the last hill so he just hiked along the river. I found him at the store already in line buying some snacks. I got a soda and some sweets, and then ordered a burger, fries and a coke at the snack bar. Next I went to the CG to see how much food I had. I changed plans so I needed to refigure my supply for the next 7 days. Once done I went to the store to buy the needed goods. I said goodbye to Ed and Wounded Knee, then made some calls. I didn’t eat dinner until almost 7:30 since I ate a late lunch. After dinner I called Sam and then sat around the fire a bit with Daywalker, Slothman, Silver, Backtrack, Ultra Brite, Second Hand, and Path Finder. It was off to bed soon after. Hopefully I can sleep without fretting over all the food I have to carry.
Scatman 2011- Mosquitoes! Up to this point the worst yet. Thousand Lakes area was amazing. I can see why Ansel Adams loved it so much. The beauty was simple breath taking. I was simply shocked by the number of people today. After the Sierra it was a shock to the system. The Sierra are so big and open so you don’t run into many people but Yosemite is like a giant party and everyone is invited.
At the top of Donohue Pass I spilled a bunch of GORP on the ground. Ed saw it and said, “you going to leave that” knowing that no sane thru-hiker leaves food behind. When I said it was for the Marmots, Ed went over and picked each piece up and ate it. It was funny to watch.
Get out there!