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Archive for June 13th, 2006

Destination: Rock Creek Crossing
Starting Location: Second Saddle
Today’s Miles: 22.70
Trip Miles: 760.60
Second Saddle (737.6, 10260) to Rock Creek Crossing (760.3, 9550) ascent (3760) descent (4465) high (11,320)
I really enjoyed hiking today. The scenery was amplified by snow covered ridges & a deep blue sky. I can not describe the beauty of this place but I walk most of the day with my jaw dropped in awe.
This morning started very cold with a strong wind & some very ominous looking clouds. The clouds appeared to have dropped a dusting of snow on the highest peaks but fortunately we stayed dry. We encountered snow and in some areas it was significant enough that we managed to lose the trail above Chicken Spring Lake. There were some tracks but they were obviously misplaced as well & were as we, simply heading in generally the right direction. After 20 minutes or so we were back on track. Because of the cool temperatures the snow stayed reasonably firm for most of the day. I post holed (sinking in deep . . . sometimes to the crotch) a few times but nothing serious & managed to fall on my butt as well. We did not deploy either ice axes or crampons today.
Surprisingly we did a big mileage day & this sets up the rest of the leg nicely. Tomorrow we will get close to Forrester Pass & set up for an early ascent on Thursday. Then we should be set up for Kearsarge Pass on Friday. One thing we just recently learned is that we are now close to the front of the class of 2006. It is certainly not a race but being in the first wave to close the mountains adds a bit of excitement for me & it certainly has cut down on the tracks to follow. Chuckie V thought we were behind approximately 30 people.
Sugar and I started thinking we were the only people left on earth as we had only seen one section hiker early this morning. Then just before camp we caught Rita from Frankfurt Germany, & Claudia & Pang from Switzerland. We just enjoyed a wonderful meal together while sitting in the glow of a setting sun next to a beautiful meadow complete with deer. As always the conversation about food came up and we began to discuss cheese. Claudia then proceeded to take off her bandana to show us, as depicted on her bandana, the alpine cheese making process & cultural significance in her country. It was a great story and to hear it trail side while helping each other with language barriers was a memory I will cherish from this trail.
Have not seen a rattlesnake for several days now & that is fine with me. I saw about 7 & Sugar Daddy had over 15 in the first 700 miles. We may see a few more near Lassen but the large numbers of snakes are behind us now. Instead we get yellow bellied marmots and deer so far & we are looking for our first bear.
Well it is 8:00 pm & past my bedtime. I have my down jacket on in my down sleeping bag and it feels like the mercury is going to drop fast tonight.
Destination: Rock Creek Crossing
Starting Location: Second Saddle
Today’s Miles: 22.70
Trip Miles: 760.60
Second Saddle (737.6, 10260) to Rock Creek Crossing (760.3, 9550) ascent (3760) descent (4465) high (11,320)
I really enjoyed hiking today. The scenery was amplified by snow covered ridges & a deep blue sky. I can not describe the beauty of this place but I walk most of the day with my jaw dropped in awe.
This morning started very cold with a strong wind & some very ominous looking clouds. The clouds appeared to have dropped a dusting of snow on the highest peaks but fortunately we stayed dry. We encountered snow and in some areas it was significant enough that we managed to lose the trail above Chicken Spring Lake. There were some tracks but they were obviously misplaced as well & were as we, simply heading in generally the right direction. After 20 minutes or so we were back on track. Because of the cool temperatures the snow stayed reasonably firm for most of the day. I post holed (sinking in deep . . . sometimes to the crotch) a few times but nothing serious & managed to fall on my butt as well. We did not deploy either ice axes or crampons today.
Surprisingly we did a big mileage day & this sets up the rest of the leg nicely. Tomorrow we will get close to Forrester Pass & set up for an early ascent on Thursday. Then we should be set up for Kearsarge Pass on Friday. One thing we just recently learned is that we are now close to the front of the class of 2006. It is certainly not a race but being in the first wave to close the mountains adds a bit of excitement for me & it certainly has cut down on the tracks to follow. Chuckie V thought we were behind approximately 30 people.
Sugar and I started thinking we were the only people left on earth as we had only seen one section hiker early this morning. Then just before camp we caught Rita from Frankfurt Germany, & Claudia & Pang from Switzerland. We just enjoyed a wonderful meal together while sitting in the glow of a setting sun next to a beautiful meadow complete with deer. As always the conversation about food came up and we began to discuss cheese. Claudia then proceeded to take off her bandana to show us, as depicted on her bandana, the alpine cheese making process & cultural significance in her country. It was a great story and to hear it trail side while helping each other with language barriers was a memory I will cherish from this trail.
Have not seen a rattlesnake for several days now & that is fine with me. I saw about 7 & Sugar Daddy had over 15 in the first 700 miles. We may see a few more near Lassen but the large numbers of snakes are behind us now. Instead we get yellow bellied marmots and deer so far & we are looking for our first bear.
Well it is 8:00 pm & past my bedtime. I have my down jacket on in my down sleeping bag and it feels like the mercury is going to drop fast tonight.
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