. Hopefully my pictures will do it justice. The day after Muir we knew we had a bad ford of Evolution Creek awaiting us. It turned out to be only waist deep. I did have to fight against the current but made it in one piece. I do believe one hiker died this year crossing Evolution, but that was earlier in the season.
Our next stop was Vermillion Valley Resort (VVR), located on Lake Edison. The day before reaching VVR I decided to hike about 30 miles to set me up for an early arrival. This brilliant idea took me up Bear Ridge, a long climb with a 53-switchback descent to VVR. I finished the day around 11:30PM stumbing down the switchbacks, a little delerious, with my nearly useless headlamp. I had left Luke ealier in the day on the last pass, as he had decided on a shorter day. I ended up staying at VVR for a few days to work and earn some extra money. When all was said and done I came out with only $60 and my VVR bill paid for. The real benefit was all the great John Muir Trail thru-hikers I met. Some have already sent me emails. I plan on coming back down and hiking the JMT again someday, probably with a partner (The PCT follows nearly the entire length of the JMT). Some of the JMT'ers packed way too much food and ended up giving me almost a month's worth that I mailed ahead to myself. My thanks goes out to you all.
The downside to staying longer at VVR was that Luke and the Toms left me there with hopes I would catch up at some point
. That hasn't happened yet, as I missed them by less than a day here in South Tahoe. On my way from VVR I've had some of my best times on the trail and met many great people. My stop in Mammoth was fun. I ended up staying with some local guys, then taking a tour of Devil's Postpile, a basalt formation near Mammoth. After that I began my hike to Tuolumne Meadows. On the way I hiked with and was passed by 21 members of the Tullamore Dew Running Club. Tullamore Dew is an Irish whiskey so I knew these guys and girls would be fun. Larry, the club leader, invited me to their camp at Tuolumne that night with an offer of free beer and food if I made the 28 mile hike. Needless to say, the beer and food was great, the company even better. I then spent the next two nights in the Yosemite Valley hanging out with a great girl and her father. The three of us hiked up to the top of Nevada Falls, where I got some spectacular pictures.
Back at Tuolumne, ready to hit the trail again, I met Nick and Emily, a couple also thru-hiking the PCT. We stayed that night at Tuolumne where we ran into a very interesting guy named Basil. With beer and food Basil was out to help any PCT hikers he could find, and luckily he found us. Thanks again Basil.
Nick, Emily, and I hiked all week together to arrive here at South Tahoe. We'll leave tomorrow morning bright and early and will be hiking at least 20 mile days with some 25-35 milers here and there. I´m still racing the weather in the North Cascades and hope to finish the first half of October. Money is still my main issue, so there may be some stops to earn more where possible.
Thanks for reading this way too long entry. I´m still very appreciative of all the support I´ve gotten from my friends, old and new. If I don´t get any pictures uploaded here I´ll do it ASAP up the trail.
Finally found some internet access, although I´m not sure I´ll be able to upload pictures! I'm in South Lake Tahoe now at about 1100 miles. Not a bad place to be. I last updated this site in Bishop, CA quite a while ago. Here's what's been going on: Luke, the Toms, and I left Bishop on June 10th. I was contemplating staying to work and earn some much-needed money, but decided to push on. We hiked back over Kearsarge Pass into the Sierra, the views never disappointing. We climbed through one pass after another; Glenn Pass, Pinchot Pass, Mather Pass, Muir Pass, Seldon Pass, Silver Pass, Donohue Pass. I may have forgotten one or two in there but you get the picture. The most involved was Muir Pass, which had snow at least two miles on either side. We post-holed almost the entire time with a short rest at the Muir hut on top. This hut was constructed about 75 years ago and is made of stone, sort of igloo-style. After Muir we descended through Evolution Valley, one of the more impressive areas of the Sierra