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Archive for June 26th, 2006

Destination: South of Deer Creek
Starting Location: 2nd Crossing of the North Fork of Mono Creek
Today’s Miles: 19.50
Trip Miles: 901.80
2nd Crossing of Mono Creek (881, 9325) to South of Deer Creek (900.5, 9200) ascent (4052) descent (4416)
I am totally beat. Nearly 13 hours of hiking, lots of snow, challenging navigation, +8,000 vertical change.
We have a lightning strike fire burning a few miles from us. It is producing a lot of smoke below us and the responsible agencies have been monitoring from a reconnaissance plane. The current thinking on these types of fires is to let them burn unless they have a high likelihood of getting out of control. This policy has numerous biological benefits as well as keeping the fuel load down at a level that will prevent catastrophic fires.
Naturally since Sugar Daddy is without his poncho (Sugartex) it rained on us today. We put Sugar in a trash bag but he soon melted. Fortunately the rain was not heavy.
Our crossing this morning was uneventful as much of the water was bound in snow when we got there. We went over Silver Pass at 8:00 a.m. and the glissading conditions were awesome & we had a previously slid (makes it faster) run of about 300 feet on a 40 degree slope. I was really booking until I got scared and braked with my feet.
I am going to be sore tomorrow as a result of a crazy maneuver I pulled off this morning. I slid down some snow, lost my footing & ended up on some big rocks. Momentum kept me going & I gyrated amongst the rocks until I came to rest on both feet & both trekking poles. I looked like a giraffe getting a drink. I am really glad I did not crash into those rocks, but the contortions I did to avoid it were not natural & body parts went places they had no business going.
Saw our first John Muir Trail (JMT) hikers. The conditions had slowed them down to a point that they had abandoned their plans to complete the JMT. Rather they were going to use their vacation days & get as far as they got.
My sleeping system goes like this: I have a piece of spinnaker cloth for a cowboy camping ground cloth. I also use it under (sometimes) my Rainbow Tarptent. The Rainbow is an awesome tent with a full side opening that provides full views with bug protection. The tent also has a bathtub floor for great rain protection & can be set up free standing (with hiking poles) or with stakes. Henry Shires was right; this is his best tent yet. For a pad I am using what used to be called a Mt Washington pad. Gossamer Gear now sells them & they are great because they do not break down over time & they do not absorb water. Next comes a 15 degree Marmot EQ Helium bag. Awesome down bag with a highly water resistant shell & a full zipper than can be zipped from top or bottom thus allowing chest or feet venting. I wear Patagonia silk weight tops & bottoms each night for added warmth but more importantly added comfort & bag cleanliness. Clammy skin against nylon is not comfortable. The silks fix that. And finally I have a pair of possum wool sleeping socks. Apparently warmer than polartec 200, these socks are toasty & I usually wear them for at least part of the night. I put my wet feet right into them & they heat right up. A few nights I have also worn my down jacket & quite frequently I wear my wind shirt over my silk weights. Tonight I have on a down jacket but it is coming off in a minute. So there it is . . . I am very happy with the system; thus good night
Destination: South of Deer Creek
Starting Location: 2nd Crossing of the North Fork of Mono Creek
Today’s Miles: 19.50
Trip Miles: 901.80
2nd Crossing of Mono Creek (881, 9325) to South of Deer Creek (900.5, 9200) ascent (4052) descent (4416)
I am totally beat. Nearly 13 hours of hiking, lots of snow, challenging navigation, +8,000 vertical change.
We have a lightning strike fire burning a few miles from us. It is producing a lot of smoke below us and the responsible agencies have been monitoring from a reconnaissance plane. The current thinking on these types of fires is to let them burn unless they have a high likelihood of getting out of control. This policy has numerous biological benefits as well as keeping the fuel load down at a level that will prevent catastrophic fires.
Naturally since Sugar Daddy is without his poncho (Sugartex) it rained on us today. We put Sugar in a trash bag but he soon melted. Fortunately the rain was not heavy.
Our crossing this morning was uneventful as much of the water was bound in snow when we got there. We went over Silver Pass at 8:00 a.m. and the glissading conditions were awesome & we had a previously slid (makes it faster) run of about 300 feet on a 40 degree slope. I was really booking until I got scared and braked with my feet.
I am going to be sore tomorrow as a result of a crazy maneuver I pulled off this morning. I slid down some snow, lost my footing & ended up on some big rocks. Momentum kept me going & I gyrated amongst the rocks until I came to rest on both feet & both trekking poles. I looked like a giraffe getting a drink. I am really glad I did not crash into those rocks, but the contortions I did to avoid it were not natural & body parts went places they had no business going.
Saw our first John Muir Trail (JMT) hikers. The conditions had slowed them down to a point that they had abandoned their plans to complete the JMT. Rather they were going to use their vacation days & get as far as they got.
My sleeping system goes like this: I have a piece of spinnaker cloth for a cowboy camping ground cloth. I also use it under (sometimes) my Rainbow Tarptent. The Rainbow is an awesome tent with a full side opening that provides full views with bug protection. The tent also has a bathtub floor for great rain protection & can be set up free standing (with hiking poles) or with stakes. Henry Shires was right; this is his best tent yet. For a pad I am using what used to be called a Mt Washington pad. Gossamer Gear now sells them & they are great because they do not break down over time & they do not absorb water. Next comes a 15 degree Marmot EQ Helium bag. Awesome down bag with a highly water resistant shell & a full zipper than can be zipped from top or bottom thus allowing chest or feet venting. I wear Patagonia silk weight tops & bottoms each night for added warmth but more importantly added comfort & bag cleanliness. Clammy skin against nylon is not comfortable. The silks fix that. And finally I have a pair of possum wool sleeping socks. Apparently warmer than polartec 200, these socks are toasty & I usually wear them for at least part of the night. I put my wet feet right into them & they heat right up. A few nights I have also worn my down jacket & quite frequently I wear my wind shirt over my silk weights. Tonight I have on a down jacket but it is coming off in a minute. So there it is . . . I am very happy with the system; thus good night
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