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35027RE: Plan A becomes Plan B becomes Plan C

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  • johndittli
    Sep 14, 2013

      right on John, sounds like a great trip!


      --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, <johnladd@...> wrote:

      Hi, Group - reporting in from Mammoth Lakes on night 17 of a 20-day NB trip..

      Plan A was hiking Northbound from New Army Pass to Crabtree (2 days)
      to Happy Isles (18 more days -- at least in my dreams). One resupply
      at MTR and tying to avoid seeing any wheeled vehicles or other signs
      of civilization at Reds Meadow or Tuolumne.

      Too hard. Thought I could do 12 miles per day and found that 10 was
      about the best I could do with a large load of food, etc.

      Plan B was to just hike North as far as I could in the same 20 total
      days and exit wherever I was and take public transportation or hitch
      to Yos vlley where Straw Marmot had ferried my car (leaving his at The
      Portal). Figured I culd reach TM and take the bus from there on a
      reopened 120 (ho long could it stay closed?).

      Plan C. In light of uncertainties about Tioga Road (resolved after I
      had already committed to "C"), I decided to exit at Reds at about 4 pm
      on my day 17 and hitch or public transit to TM and walk from there
      (with my remaining days 18, 19 and 20) to the Valley to reach the car.
      (Short enough daily mileage to allow at least one side trip)

      Turned out that public transit worked well (lluckily, I got to Reds on
      a Saturday), so I ditched the idea of hitching. and took the Postpile
      shuttle and YARTS

      I had wanted to avoid civilization for the full 20 days. But I have to
      admit that a 12 oz Ribeye, a couple of beers and a shower feel pretty
      good at the overpirced Mammoth Mtn Lodge.

      I have seen a number of members, but do noice that many people seem to
      be doing just fine withut our help.

      Had a dinner with Ray Rippell before heacing down the Golden Staircase
      (last part with a failing headlamp). Judging from the 10 lb camera
      he's carrying (I'm exaggerating, but not by much) he should have some
      great pics for the next edition of his PDF Guide to JMT planning and

      Spent a night camped near Daryl Abrams and noted that Bob Shattuck and
      some other southbounders were wearng his new glove design (at his
      Palmflex website). They have the free fingertips that I prefer (thumb
      and first finger free on his) and good palm protection against falls,
      where the base of the palm can easily be injred.

      Had minor surgery on the trail thanks to a M.D. from Pennsylvania.
      Some kind of fingernail bacterial infection that apparently can get
      nasty if the accumuated pus is not expressed. I've been carrying a
      small surgical blade in sterile packaging for about the last 10 years
      and finally had a chance to have it used. He said I got the same
      treatment on the trail as I'd have gotten at an ER and the infection
      felt much better immediately after the on-trail procedure and has now
      resolved. Used a course of azithromycen (again carried many trips
      before it bvecame useful) as well as his tretment.

      Most dramatic gear issue was arriving late to a campsite just Noth of
      Woods Creek, opening the JetBoil to the smell of isobutane and
      realizing that all my fuel from my sole canister had 100% leaked
      during the day. (I should have detached the canister from the burner
      each day but didn't).

      I decided to carry on and met with Straw Marmot the next day and he
      gave me his 1/4 full can as he had a full spare and only a few days
      remaiing (he moves way faster than I).

      Thanks to all the other members I met along the way and esp. to those
      who have agreed to participate in a survey I plan to distribute after
      rreturning and to those who promised to send me pictures (I did ot
      bring a camera).

      Any one have a good picture of the stormy day above Rae lakes on about
      Sept 9? Looking South from Rae Lakes toward Glen Pass (where I had
      just met with Bob Shattuck on his JMT #13) looked like Mordor in Lord
      of the Rings. This was one place where I really wished I had taken a
      camera. But hopefully some of you can help here.

      The other great picture I am missing is the sunset from the lakes
      North of Silver Pass on Sept 14 or 15 where th smoke frm the fire
      created sunset colors that could have come from a Disney movie.

      If you have pics of me, yourselves (if we met) or particularly good
      pics of scenery we would have had in common, I'd love a picture sent
      off board to JohnLadd at gmail dot com.

      I'll be home by Sept 19th. I've still never done a full legit JMT in
      either direction though this was the closest I have come. Ah, well.
      Others can have way more bragging rights than I (esp. the repeat
      hikers like Roleigh and Bob Shattuck).

      At least I've had a great relationship with this beautiful trail since
      about 1970. It's a great trail and this is a great group. A number of
      people I met on the trail (members and lurkers) have told me how much
      they have appreciated both the informatn the Group provded them and
      the civilized tone of the Group.

      John Curran Ladd
      1616 Castro Street
      San Francisco, CA 94114-3707
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