For the next ~250 miles the trail will not cross a road (dirt, paved or otherwise). Resupplies will require hiking off trail to get to roads and then hitching into a town. The first of which requires a 15mi roundtrip hike with a 3700′ of elevation change and then a 15mi hitch.
The scenery has made a dramatic change over the last 20 miles. Hopefully, these pics capture some of that.
The Kern River is running strong…luckily, no fords today. The water is freezing. I stick my feet in at lunch to clean them off and I could last about 15 seconds per foot.
Desert wildflowers with Sierra granite domes on the horizon.
Rivers and meadows…the first we’ve seen so far.
The sun was still warm as we climbed from 6000′ to 10,700′ so the umbrella is still welcome.
Plenty of snow over 10,000′. These guys are from Israel and snow is a new experience.
The spectacular Gomez Meadow….but the Mosquitoes were fierce!
Home for the night at Death Canyon Creek. I’ll need to check on the story behind the name.
The first extended time in snow went fairly well.
Navigation is made easier with my PCT-GPS phone App. And most of the snow was on the downhill side so boot skiing was kind of fun.
Out of the desert…almost.
Today we made it to Kennedy Meadows marking the entrance into the High Sierras. KM isn’t much… a partially stocked general store that runs on generators with porta-johns, and a dusty lot to camp on. Regardless, it is the first civilization in 140 miles and the last for the next 250 (without hiking a ways off trail and hitching). It is also the location everyone sends their ice axes, crampons, bear canisters (required) and Warner clothes for the extended miles above 10,000′. Needless to say it’s been a focal point for evwryine since we left Mexico.
Waiting for the sun to slowly chase the shadow across the valley and warm me up this AM.
This is quintessential Sierra granite domes…the first we’ve seen of this.
The Kern river is a major drainage of of Mt. Whitney and the first major river we’ve seen.
Welcome to the 700 club!
This is 2+ days worth of names who signed one of the random trail registers we come across at road crossings. There must be over 60 names (25/day?).
The infamous Kennedy Meadows General Store. There is a classic scene in the movie Wild when Cheryl arrives and everyone gives her a big cheer.
I got a big cheer when I arrived at 9:15 this morning…I think the beer started flowing at 9:00.
I spent most of the day organizing gear, eating, drinking, socializing and relaxing. Here’s Bronco showing off his tan with many hikers hanging out and taking over the patio.
This is a kitten that a hiker adopted along the way…doesn’t seem like the best idea but she seems to be doing fine (and weigh less than a roll of TP)
The only other thing nearby is a bar/grill called Grumpy Bears, about 3 miles away. Here are Bronco and Loco in the back of a pickup hitching a ride.
Text messaging, PCT style.