Well the plan was to back pack for 5 days and maybe hit 3 14ner’s. Well that’s what 5 other guys did. No one to blame but myself. I burned the candle finishing my tent. By Friday night at midnight while I was sealing it in my kitchen I realized I was supposed to be on vacation and should relax a bit. I had been working feverishly since Thursday afternoon on the tent till about 1am each night. Slept 7.5 hours got up at 8:30 on Sat. for some reason did not leave the bay area till 12. Made good time. Only mistake was thinking there was a separate turn off for Horseshoe meadows…. opps, cost me about 15 min. At 10:30 on the way up to horseshoe I had to stop and sleep. By 11 was in the bag. Got up at 6:30 and hit the road. Parked the car and looked for Ron’s truck, did not see it…. weird.
Started to eat breakfast and finish last minute packing…. time to hit the head. Finish breakfast and make tea, time to hit the head. Try to finish packing…. hit the head. Not feeling too well. It’s now 8:30… have to figure out what to do. Decide to day hike in and try to catch up with you all to at least say have a good trip! Time to hit the head. After 5 trips to the head I am ready to go. I start to jam, by 12 I am at the 4th/5th lake. Remember it… looking up at old army but can’t see the trail….. head around the 5th lake to some huge talus where I discover that my vertigo is acting up as I almost fall over multiple times. Geez WTF!. Head around to the other side to take a break and eat something and look at the map. At this point I will be passing the trail to old army for the 2nd time. Eat and finally relax a bit. For the first time that day, (and if you know me that’s sayin’ somethin’).
As real proof that I am not doing so well, I head over to the bowl where old army is, passing the trail for the third time, there is no one around except a few fishermen. I start to go around the left (wrong) side of the lake trying to find a way up to the pass… I hear voices…. fishermen…. I hear more voices (OK, I didn’t relax that much!)… I take a look…. oh look, over across the lake, the real trail….. I swear at myself and hurry over…. I chat with some folks. Yep your packs are up there…. it’s now 2pm… I am tired and realize that by the time I get to the pass there is a real chance that you will be gone… then I will get back to the car real late….
I remember that I am on vacation and in a very nice place! I decide I will leave text messages and hope for the best. I relax a bit and then start the 6 mile hike out. Relaxing in some nice spots on the way out. Have a good dinner and find a great place to sleep up by Tuttle Creek. Nice and cool as it’s 90 in Lone Pine. My plan is to drop by the ranger station and see what kind of permit I can get. Might as well head in somewhere for a few days and enjoy myself! I notice my feet are swollen and I have two blisters. Sadly one is on the end of one of my toes. I figure they will be better tomorrow like the usually are. I soak them in a creek. Nice!
On Monday, I relax in the shade and drink my tea after breakfast. I head over to the ranger station, its’ hot! Have to get back up to the alpine. I ask about cottonwood, and then I ask any Whitney permits… she checks, why yes there is, when do I want to go and how long do I want to stay? I can’t believe it. I say I’ll head in tomorrow and come out Thursday. I get lunch and head up to Whitney Portal to repack. It’s nice up there and I’m excited to be going. I just might get Muir after all.
I head back to my camp site and take a hike up the canyon. I realize this is the approach if you were going to climb any of the routes on the HUGE south face of Lone Pine Peak. My feat hurt. What else is new? I have dinner, get beer and ice stop by the new skate park behind the MacD. then head up and re-sort, finish packing so everything is ready to go. Hit the sack at 10. Parked in a new place a little farther up the road.
Could not sleep. Turns out that I parked (it looked good at the time) in such a way that I kept sliding off my mat. By the time I realized this it was some wee hour in the morning… too late to reposition the car. Alarm goes off at 6:30, I’m up, well sorta…. my eyes are burning from lack of sleep and I know I have to do 6 miles and 4k today and then 16+ miles and 2K the next day. Am I up for it? Are my feet up for it? I decide my blisters have not gotten any better and that there is a good chance my feet will be hamburger by the time I’m done. I’m soooo tired! I sit there and feel sorry for my self. This really sucks. I decide it’s going to be a wake and bake morning so I go back to sleep and sleep another 2 hours! So much for Whitney.
I take my time with breakfast and tea. I slowly head home. I am disgusted with myself and life in general.
It’s now almost a week later. I still feel disgusted, it’s been a long week. One good thing is that I am really going to try to start exercising on a regular basis. Feeling tired like this just sucks. Another good decision is that some things are going to change around the house…… or else…. !