Didn’t have to pay for the Yosemite entry fee! Yay! I spent yesterday and last night at the “Backpackers Camp” down in the village. It was at the Upper-pines campground. Repurposed during COVID reopening. I’ll spend my final night there as well. Today was rough and LONG! Not crazy steep though. Took me 3h 45m to go 4mi. 25 min longer than my estimate. So not bad. I did have to tape up early on, started feeling some friction on the outside of my big toe. My elevation estimate seems to be accurate as well. Came in at about 220lbs. Pack weight was around 30lbs including almost 5lbs of water. I had good energy. Oatmeal, Blueberries, 2 boiled eggs and 12oz V8. Had a Powerbar at about 2 hours in( my new go too breakfast) Never hit the “Wall”. Found a small flat spot up the hill away from the trail just pass Cascade Creek. Legs and feet were very numb and sore. I took a soak in the cold water. That helped. It’s 8pm, Legs feel “hot”. But not sore. Maybe tomorrow. I hope not. Tomorrow’s hike is harder and I won’t have the benefit of that good breakfast. Plan “B” will be to just rest a day here. Though I’d rather not. I’ve got a private spot, but on a hill, lots of deadfall around and hard to move without tripping. Had a visitor today. Looked like a young Doe. Hung around me for about 10min. Got lots of video. Thought she might walk up to me! She was very comfortable, not scared at all. Perhaps acclimated to people like our local Dear. Or it’s me, I seem to be able to get VERY close to wildlife without them being frightened. She nibbled on my hammock for a sec too! (I need to inspect that). Lol. She’s back! AND back again in the middle of the night. She was snooping around my Bear canister but I put a wooden cage around it. I was too focused on listening for animals.
Woke up this morning, 50-50 on wether I was gonna try and make the second half today. Legs were sore. I figured be bored here today(not the best spot) or just get moving. I decided to go. I’d bring water (6lbs) in case I decided not to go all the way to Ribbon Creek.
Well. I’m glad I got going! I made it to The creek and found a nice spot. So I’m right on schedule. I made rather decent time. Better than I expected. My legs held up. I took lots of breaks. Took it slow and did well. Just like day one. Ive gone up 4,056ft. If calculations are correct. I’ll finish this route tomorrow with a stop at the top of El Cap. Maybe 3mi round trip, back to this spot. I may go on a little side hike off of this trail if I’m feeling up to it. I knew this was spot was prime Bear country. Couple of hours after I got here, while I was setting up my tent I heard a loud grunt I turned around to just catch a glimpse of the Bear as it was running off. Just saw it’s back. Nothing great but at least I’ve seen one. Beautiful color, blonde or very light brown. Grizzly color. But they don’t live here any more. So I’m on alert now. They definitely are quite. It was 30 yards away ish, and I only heard it grunt and book off. I expect my canister to be fooled with tonight. I’m gonna put it aways away. I don’t won’t to be focusing on all the noises at night. Well around 7ish I was snuggling up in the tent. It’s cold. No sun at that time here. Anyway, heard something just across the creek and YES. Saw my Bear. Got some good video. It didn’t here me. Same Bear I presume. This is probably its territory. They are solitary animals.
Today I did 4.65mi. Went to the top of El Cap. And a bit further towards the next peak. I should have brought all my gear. Then I would have gone. Decided not to. It would have been close to an 8mi day and I was low on water. But I achieved my main goals! El Cap and a Bear sighting. Got some nice shots of Half Dome. Taking it easy tomorrow. I’m going to trailblazer around this spot tomorrow and see if I can find a large clearing for some Star gazing tomorrow night. I see a big granite outcropping just aways away. Up there should be open sky. Too many young Sequoias around my camp. There is a fire ring near me. I wonder if that’s an official spot? Though fires are not permitted right now, at least. It’s 4pm and I’m chasing the sun through the trees. Cold in the shade and I nixed any warmer items to save weight. Though Temperatures have been perfect for this type of excursion. Throughout my journey I’ve been able to rest in the shade(a lot). Bugs and bites have been an issue and I’m gettin low on bug lotion.
Did 6.6mi towards the way back today. Took me half the time. Mostly all down hill though. Can’t believe I went up that. Seemed steeper coming down. THANK GOD FOR TREKKING POLES!!!
I’ve been able to do much more than I thought I could or would have done before. Staying just above Tamarack Creek. Same creek that runs through Tamarack Flat campgrounds some miles above me. I wonder how much weight I’ve lost? I’m at 20.74 total miles. I think I’m about 2.5-3mi from where I started. Glad I did it like this. 4-7mi a day. I’ve