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Archive for June 11th, 2006

Destination: So Fork Kern River in Monache Meadows
Starting Location: Kennedy Meadows
Today’s Miles: 11.50
Trip Miles: 717.00
Kennedy Meadows Campground (702.2, 6150) to South Fork Kern River in Monache Meadows (716.7, 7820) ascent (2680) descent (1010)
Awesome! It’s no joke, we are in the Sierra Nevada & it is gorgeous. We are camped along the banks of the Kern River in a giant open valley. Hundreds of mud swallow dart along the river & return to their adobes under the bridge. Scott Williamson & his girlfriend Michelle are also here and Sugar Daddy and I can honestly say we hiked farther & faster than on any day in history. However he basically called this a non-hiking day. We really enjoyed visiting with Scott & Michelle and because we are the only ones (we think) that left Kennedy today we have this entire valley to ourselves.
Typically thru-hikers aim to leave Kennedy Meadows on June 15 (Ray day) during a normal year. It is called Ray day after Ray Jardine who promoted June 15th as likely optimal for manageable snow & river crossing levels while allowing ample time to make it to Canada. One problem . . . this is not a typical year. So do you go early & deal with lots of snow, go late and deal with heavy run-off, or skip the Sierra? Sugar Daddy & I decided that one foot of snow is not unlike 20 or even 30 feet of snow, but one foot of running water is very different from 5 feet of running water. So we are in early. We got a good glimpse of the southern exposed slopes further north & they look to be 50% covered. This will likely mean nearly 100% coverage on the northern slopes at high elevations.
I am apprehensive & excited about what lies ahead. What an opportunity. We left Kennedy with our bellies exploding. Dad made us a huge pan of homemade macaroni & cheese with pounds of cheese for dinner last night. So today after a hash & egg breakfast we had mac & cheese and lots of ice cream. We waddled out of camp with heavy bellies & heavy packs.
The Sierras bring some new weight challenges. First we needed more warm clothes, then we added a bear canister for our 7 days of food, then some crampons & finally an ice axe. This added about 5 pounds to our base pack weight which does not sound like a lot but try carrying around a 5 pound dumbbell all day every day
Based on my belly size index I would say I am down about 10 lbs to approximately 180. Now this section of our trip requires between 4500 – 5500 calories per day (big mountains with snow) and if we are only able to carry about 2.5 lbs of food per day (due to our ability to carry it & the size of our bear can), & if each ounce (40 ounces) total per day of food weighs on average 100 calories, then we are going to lose more weight because if I remember right a pound of body weight is 3500 calories. So, if we burn 5000 per day & we consume 4000 per day in 3.5 days we will lose 1 pound. These factors are going to last for about 35 days so I will likely lose at least 10 pounds in the next month.
If I keep doing this I will starve to death so we eat 10;s of thousands of calories when available to partially mitigate for this phenomenon. Bottom line: if you want to lose weight get more exercise. If you get enough you can literally eat all you want. I doubt this will sell well in our quick fix, instant gratification society. Regardless, I have to pay attention to these real calorie issues in order to maintain enough go-BIG to continue.
Destination: So Fork Kern River in Monache Meadows
Starting Location: Kennedy Meadows
Today’s Miles: 11.50
Trip Miles: 717.00
Kennedy Meadows Campground (702.2, 6150) to South Fork Kern River in Monache Meadows (716.7, 7820) ascent (2680) descent (1010)
Awesome! It’s no joke, we are in the Sierra Nevada & it is gorgeous. We are camped along the banks of the Kern River in a giant open valley. Hundreds of mud swallow dart along the river & return to their adobes under the bridge. Scott Williamson & his girlfriend Michelle are also here and Sugar Daddy and I can honestly say we hiked farther & faster than on any day in history. However he basically called this a non-hiking day. We really enjoyed visiting with Scott & Michelle and because we are the only ones (we think) that left Kennedy today we have this entire valley to ourselves.
Typically thru-hikers aim to leave Kennedy Meadows on June 15 (Ray day) during a normal year. It is called Ray day after Ray Jardine who promoted June 15th as likely optimal for manageable snow & river crossing levels while allowing ample time to make it to Canada. One problem . . . this is not a typical year. So do you go early & deal with lots of snow, go late and deal with heavy run-off, or skip the Sierra? Sugar Daddy & I decided that one foot of snow is not unlike 20 or even 30 feet of snow, but one foot of running water is very different from 5 feet of running water. So we are in early. We got a good glimpse of the southern exposed slopes further north & they look to be 50% covered. This will likely mean nearly 100% coverage on the northern slopes at high elevations.
I am apprehensive & excited about what lies ahead. What an opportunity. We left Kennedy with our bellies exploding. Dad made us a huge pan of homemade macaroni & cheese with pounds of cheese for dinner last night. So today after a hash & egg breakfast we had mac & cheese and lots of ice cream. We waddled out of camp with heavy bellies & heavy packs.
The Sierras bring some new weight challenges. First we needed more warm clothes, then we added a bear canister for our 7 days of food, then some crampons & finally an ice axe. This added about 5 pounds to our base pack weight which does not sound like a lot but try carrying around a 5 pound dumbbell all day every day
Based on my belly size index I would say I am down about 10 lbs to approximately 180. Now this section of our trip requires between 4500 – 5500 calories per day (big mountains with snow) and if we are only able to carry about 2.5 lbs of food per day (due to our ability to carry it & the size of our bear can), & if each ounce (40 ounces) total per day of food weighs on average 100 calories, then we are going to lose more weight because if I remember right a pound of body weight is 3500 calories. So, if we burn 5000 per day & we consume 4000 per day in 3.5 days we will lose 1 pound. These factors are going to last for about 35 days so I will likely lose at least 10 pounds in the next month.
If I keep doing this I will starve to death so we eat 10;s of thousands of calories when available to partially mitigate for this phenomenon. Bottom line: if you want to lose weight get more exercise. If you get enough you can literally eat all you want. I doubt this will sell well in our quick fix, instant gratification society. Regardless, I have to pay attention to these real calorie issues in order to maintain enough go-BIG to continue.
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