Day 36, 6/8, Bishop, CA, M-788, 0mi

Today marked the beginning of my 6th week on trail, and almost as importantly, my first ZERO day… Hiker speak for zero miles hiked!

I spent most of the day organizing gear and coordinating logistics which I will get into later.

As many hikers do in this area, I hitched 40 mikes up the road to the much bigger town of Bishop. This is Brett showing us how it’s done with the High Sierra behind us. We got a ride pretty quickly from a lady who was driving from San Diego to Tahoe. I didn’t even have to ride in the back of an open pick up truck…front seat of a Prius!
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After spending the last day and a half assessing trail conditions ahead and the potential risks of the upcoming sections I made the only rational decision I could realistically make…skip ahead so as to not get in a position where I have to choose between fording a creek that shouldn’t be crossed or backtracking 40+ miles off a side trail to town. There have been some harrowing accounts posted on Facebook recently (https://www.facebook.com/marcus.mazzaferri/posts/10209213010268845). The situation out there becomes very binary, as in everything is good until, it’s not!

After that decision was made I had to figure out where to go. Snow will not be avoided this year (not my reason for skipping sections either) but I will be able to minimize some of the biggest risks. The final decision is to go to Chester, CA (~Mile 1325) which is 8 miles from the trail and near Lassen Volcanic Park. From there I will hike North to Canada and then I will figure out how to get back to Chester and hike South through the Sierra finishing at Kearsarge Pass, where I left the trail yesterday.

Then there is the matter of figuring out where to leave gear (bear canisters, ice axes, etc) and decide whether micro-spikes are needed (yes).
Then figure out new locations to send resupply boxes to. Lastly, there was the matter of coordinating the timing of three shuttles to get me 350+ miles north.

The other good news is that Loco and Bronco made it out of the mountains today and were in high spirits after showers, laundry, food and drink.
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They also had a difficult journey over their last 5 days and were torn as to what to do moving forward, but ultimately liked the fact I had figured everything out and were on board with jumping north tomorrow. So at least I will have some company on the 12 hours of travel to Chester.

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6 thoughts on “Day 36, 6/8, Bishop, CA, M-788, 0mi

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