Saturday, June 16, 2012

Day 56-Devil's Post Pile

Mammoth Lakes at mile 903 to Mile ?

Hitching out of town was easy. We got a ride from a guy who works for Search and Rescue. He told SAR stories almost the whole way to the trail head.  We were dropped off just after 8 a.m. and were back on the PCT (after taking the side trail from the parking lot to the trail) at just after 9 a.m.

We stopped for a quick snack break after getting on trail, but our first real break of the day was the hot springs at Red's Meadow.  Nothing at Red's was open yet because of the wind storm at the end of last year.  The resort looks close to opening-most of the down trees have been taken care of.

The hot spring was in the camp ground behind the bath house.  The water felt hotter than the pools at Deep Creek back around mile 300.  I didn't stay in for long-the hot day and hot water made me feel slightly sick so I sat with my feet in the cold stream nearby instead.
The Devil's Post Pile

About a mile after the hot spring we came to the Devils Post Pile-rock post standing 40 feet tall.  It was very cool looking.  We dropped our packs and took the side trail to the top of the pile.  It was like standing on a massive bee hive-all the post are hexagon shape.
The top of the post pile

The PCT split off from the JMT for 14 miles and we had lunch at the base of some falls right after the split.  The sun was so hot I didn't want to leave our shady spot.  It didn't help that the miles were crawling by.

After lunch the miles seemed to go by a little quicker as we walked along a river.  I kept falling behind-tired and weighed down by my pack.  The trail spent most of the afternoon in the valley-easy walking-thankfully.

Around four it started to climb up.  I kept sipping on my water until I got nothing but air on from my hose.  We took a snack break near the middle of the up where I drank the rest of my water.  In 700 miles of desert I never ran out of water but did in the Sierra's.  It wasn't a big deal like it would have been in the desert-there was a water in a mile.  Turned out to be pond water that tasted like leaves.  I took a little hoping to find something better. 

The trail came across some pit toilets, trash cans and a road-the wilderness of the Sierra's seems to have ended.  Then the trail really went up-switchbacking through a meadow-a very hot meadow and I drank my leaf water happily.

Around 5:30 we stopped by some awesome red rocks for shade and a snack.  We looked at the maps and picked a camping place nearly four miles away, and started walking again.  Halfway there we were treated with one of the best views:  mountains with glaciers, a lake glittering in the late afternoon sunlight, white fluffy clouds-it was stunning.  If we had water we would have stayed and camped.

We walked about a mile and found a beautiful stream and we still had the beautiful view.  For awhile we thought about camping in a rather crummy spot-sandy soil, rocks every where, no flat spots, but great view-but in the end decided to move on to our original destination.

Sunset for dinner

Moving on was the right choice.  It had the wonderful view and nice places to pitch a tent.  While making dinner the sun turned all the clouds pink-my favorite sunset so far, and I can't imagine it can be beat after leaving the Sierra's.

1 comment:

  1. So glad you're capturing all this in text, memory and film.