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Why do the JMT more than 3 times -- people who've done it 4 or more times, please give your reasons

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  • Roleigh Martin
    I ll be doing the JMT my 4th time this next summer. I have to justify my choice to some of my fellow hikers who prefer to find new trails. Here are my
    Message 1 of 12 , Oct 20, 2010
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      I'll be doing the JMT my 4th time this next summer.  I have to justify my choice to some of my fellow hikers who prefer to find new trails.

      Here are my reasons.  (By the way, Bob, have you done it 10 times?  Incredible, I want to hear from you on this new thread).

      I find the JMT most inviting to do over and over again for these reasons:

      1.  One probably gets the best hiking workout in the fewest days in terms of daily ascents and descents due to the numerous very tall passes.  Doing these ascents in many ways is like doing squats, when the uphill trail has plenty of steps that are 12" to 20" tall apiece.  One has to lift their entire body up using only one leg (at a point in time) plus their poles/arms.  It is like doing hundreds of squats a day but having fun.

      2.  One feels comfortable doing the trail again insofar as knowing where the next water supply exists and one can therefore reduce the water-carrying weight; that brings comfort to the hike.

      3.  One knows the resupply points and doesn't have to research the hike to death versus doing something new (i.e., like doing a JMT class hike on the Colorado Trail).

      4.  It enables one to revisit Muir Trail Ranch which is a little bit of Heaven and see again the staff one thinks of as an extended family.

      5.  One is usually able to find new partners to join in the hike so you don't hike or camp alone.  Those that hike with you for the 20-some days often become new lifelong friends.  If one did a lesser known trail, this would be hard to find more hikers in the group and to avoid camping alone.

      6.  The trail and scenery is among the best in the world.  The JMT is consistently rated the number one through hike of 200-300 miles in length.

      7.  The weather is more often predictable than not.  When it rains, you're not hiking in mud as it would be on the AT or other trails.

      8.  If one starts in Happy Isles, one knows that the altitude will not be so high for several days.  One does not worry about getting altitude sickness.

      What are some other reasons?  Your input is most appreciated and welcomed.

      On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 7:19 PM, robert shattuck <bobolonius@...> wrote:


      Ned, 

       that's a great reason for me to do #11 . . . find that rock. I also like the plaque on the south side of Glen, that commemorates the one young guy to be killed during the construction of the section there (if not the entire trail) I've only managed to find it once. 


    • John Ladd
      One more reason: It s a different trail NoBo than SoBo. I ve still not done even one thru-hike but several section hikes as round trips and it is always
      Message 2 of 12 , Oct 20, 2010
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        One more reason:

        It's a different trail NoBo than SoBo. 

        I've still not done even one thru-hike but several section hikes as round trips and it is always different each way.

        John Curran Ladd
        1616 Castro Street
        San Francisco, CA  94114-3707
        415-648-9279


        On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 5:35 PM, Roleigh Martin <roleigh@...> wrote:
         

        I'll be doing the JMT my 4th time this next summer.  I have to justify my choice to some of my fellow hikers who prefer to find new trails.

        Here are my reasons.  (By the way, Bob, have you done it 10 times?  Incredible, I want to hear from you on this new thread).

        I find the JMT most inviting to do over and over again for these reasons:

        1.  One probably gets the best hiking workout in the fewest days in terms of daily ascents and descents due to the numerous very tall passes.  Doing these ascents in many ways is like doing squats, when the uphill trail has plenty of steps that are 12" to 20" tall apiece.  One has to lift their entire body up using only one leg (at a point in time) plus their poles/arms.  It is like doing hundreds of squats a day but having fun.

        2.  One feels comfortable doing the trail again insofar as knowing where the next water supply exists and one can therefore reduce the water-carrying weight; that brings comfort to the hike.

        3.  One knows the resupply points and doesn't have to research the hike to death versus doing something new (i.e., like doing a JMT class hike on the Colorado Trail).

        4.  It enables one to revisit Muir Trail Ranch which is a little bit of Heaven and see again the staff one thinks of as an extended family.

        5.  One is usually able to find new partners to join in the hike so you don't hike or camp alone.  Those that hike with you for the 20-some days often become new lifelong friends.  If one did a lesser known trail, this would be hard to find more hikers in the group and to avoid camping alone.

        6.  The trail and scenery is among the best in the world.  The JMT is consistently rated the number one through hike of 200-300 miles in length.

        7.  The weather is more often predictable than not.  When it rains, you're not hiking in mud as it would be on the AT or other trails.

        8.  If one starts in Happy Isles, one knows that the altitude will not be so high for several days.  One does not worry about getting altitude sickness.

        What are some other reasons?  Your input is most appreciated and welcomed.

        On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 7:19 PM, robert shattuck <bobolonius@...> wrote:


        Ned, 

         that's a great reason for me to do #11 . . . find that rock. I also like the plaque on the south side of Glen, that commemorates the one young guy to be killed during the construction of the section there (if not the entire trail) I've only managed to find it once. 



      • Roleigh Martin
        I agree about NOBO v. SOBO but I want to take about 5.5 weeks off from work to do it NOBO - I want to start at Kennedy Meadows, resupply at Horseshoe Meadows
        Message 3 of 12 , Oct 20, 2010
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          I agree about NOBO v. SOBO but I want to take about 5.5 weeks off from work to do it NOBO - I want to start at Kennedy Meadows, resupply at Horseshoe Meadows TH, then again at Kearsarge.  That way by the time I do the summit, I will have altitude adjustment.  I don't adjust that fast.  I figure starting in 2012 I will do the NOBO route.  As it is now, I take 4 weeks off of work to do it SOBO.

          I look forward to doing the entire JMT with those extra miles starting at Kennedy Meadows.  I figure I'll probably take 32-34 days on the trail with 2-3 down days.

          Hey, did I enumerate all the reasons to be repetitive though?  Why do it NOBO over and over again?

          How many times have some people done it?  I remember meeting a couple who did the trail 14 times.  They were retired and very happy -- very romantic.

          On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 10:39 PM, John Ladd <johnladd@...> wrote:
          One more reason:

          It's a different trail NoBo than SoBo. 

          I've still not done even one thru-hike but several section hikes as round trips and it is always different each way.

          John Curran Ladd
          1616 Castro Street
          San Francisco, CA  94114-3707
          415-648-9279



        • robert shattuck
          Why start from the north end (not to mention do it so many times . . . ) ??? in a nutshell (for me) it s convenient, cheap, and as well as I know, never, ever
          Message 4 of 12 , Oct 21, 2010
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            Why start from the north end (not to mention do it so many times . . . ) ???

            in a nutshell (for me) it's convenient, cheap, and as well as I know, never, ever boring. 

            8. easy to acclimate, of course. It's also, for me, very easy to get to yosemite, via amtrak, rather than all the way down to whitney. If for some reason you started at whitney and you were not doing too well, you'd have a heck of a time getting yourself out. 

            Just think if you got over whitney, but it was hell-ish . . . you were feeling crummy for two days then you had to go over Forester, or not . . . you could be like a marble in a bowl, never making it over the lip ( but Bighorn Plateau would be a sweet spot to be stuck. heavenly) . . . something like that, but basically, it's all about building up to the grand finale. 

            I've said it before but for me, the big finale is Whitney . . . the big finale is all those amazing passes at the end––it's doing something grand, like spending the night on whitney, or waking up with the sun at trail camp and skipping downhill all the way to burgers and beer (the portal) and then a lovely night of decompressing on the the streets of Lone Pine, in the hot tub at the DOW VILLA. 

            Most of us only get to do an epic adventure like this once or twice, due to various reasons––why end it down in yosemite valley with all the throngs of fleshy, clean, LOUD tourists, when you can end it up in the heavens. 

            7. Mud? weather? getting dirty. All part of the fun. leave your soap at home. The only time I've ever gotten muddy on the JMT was when I, one frosty morning, stepped onto a soft bank and it slipped me right into the lake. Got my shorts a little dirty, but no problem. Sierra weather, predictable. I'd have to say, yes––which is why I go the same time every time (or at least the last nine times) 

            6. must agree. I've seen it a few times and it never gets old . . . it's that, "Range of Light," thing. 

            5. One of the reasons I've done it so many times is that it's never been perfect and I blame that on the people I meet. Some of them, I've really liked and some not . . . This last time I managed to stick to my solo thing and it was great, but I did realize, I like sharing the experience . . . plus, it's easier in the deep dark night to say, "no, you go out and see if that's really a bear" 

            4. Having worked at the VVR for a few summers, I don't think I could do the trail without stopping in. I feel at home––but I really disliked that waitress they had on the morning shift this season: loud, obnoxious (Jim, are you hearing me?) . . . I only started dropping down into the Muir Trail Ranch the last two or three trips, but yes, what an angel, PATT is––either way you walk it, stopping in at both the VVR and MTR is well, the other way to say it is––not stopping there is like not bothering to summit whitney when you get to the end. 

            3. I'd love to do the colorado trail, wether I knew all about it or not . . . but another reason I've done the JMT so many times is it's practical––very close to San Francisco and cheap. I spend maybe three to four hundred bucks for the entire thing . . . food, transport, hotels . . . I did realize on this last trip that I did know everything a little too well––I knew just about every turn, but while it didn't diminish it, I did do a lot of thinking about doing something else . . . if I could afford it. 

            2. There's so much water on the JMT, but there are a few stretches where a guzzler might find him/herself in trouble, but I doubt it. 

            1. I'd hate to start at Whitney, if only because I've seen so many sorry people, with that look of, What am I doing. This sucks, in their faces. I think the worst pounding I ever take on the trail is coming down from Pinchot––the last few miles before you get to the bridge, ugh. I'd hate to go up that thing, with all those huge horse steps, no thanks. Much rather do any of the passes, twice!

            Again, if you equate the trail with heaven and hell (and I am not a believer, but I know heaven when I see it) . . . where would you want to end up . . . give me north to south any time . . . but what do they say, hike your hike. 


            forkfestreview.blogspot.com
            sparklefart.blogspot.com

            http://www.summitpost.org/plans/view_activity.php?post_id=6480






            To: johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com
            From: roleigh@...
            Date: Wed, 20 Oct 2010 19:35:29 -0500
            Subject: [John Muir Trail] Why do the JMT more than 3 times -- people who've done it 4 or more times, please give your reasons

             
            I'll be doing the JMT my 4th time this next summer.  I have to justify my choice to some of my fellow hikers who prefer to find new trails.

            Here are my reasons.  (By the way, Bob, have you done it 10 times?  Incredible, I want to hear from you on this new thread).

            I find the JMT most inviting to do over and over again for these reasons:

            1.  One probably gets the best hiking workout in the fewest days in terms of daily ascents and descents due to the numerous very tall passes.  Doing these ascents in many ways is like doing squats, when the uphill trail has plenty of steps that are 12" to 20" tall apiece.  One has to lift their entire body up using only one leg (at a point in time) plus their poles/arms.  It is like doing hundreds of squats a day but having fun.

            2.  One feels comfortable doing the trail again insofar as knowing where the next water supply exists and one can therefore reduce the water-carrying weight; that brings comfort to the hike.

            3.  One knows the resupply points and doesn't have to research the hike to death versus doing something new (i.e., like doing a JMT class hike on the Colorado Trail).

            4.  It enables one to revisit Muir Trail Ranch which is a little bit of Heaven and see again the staff one thinks of as an extended family.

            5.  One is usually able to find new partners to join in the hike so you don't hike or camp alone.  Those that hike with you for the 20-some days often become new lifelong friends.  If one did a lesser known trail, this would be hard to find more hikers in the group and to avoid camping alone.

            6.  The trail and scenery is among the best in the world.  The JMT is consistently rated the number one through hike of 200-300 miles in length.

            7.  The weather is more often predictable than not.  When it rains, you're not hiking in mud as it would be on the AT or other trails.

            8.  If one starts in Happy Isles, one knows that the altitude will not be so high for several days.  One does not worry about getting altitude sickness.

            What are some other reasons?  Your input is most appreciated and welcomed.


            On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 7:19 PM, robert shattuck <bobolonius@...> wrote:


            Ned, 

             that's a great reason for me to do #11 . . . find that rock. I also like the plaque on the south side of Glen, that commemorates the one young guy to be killed during the construction of the section there (if not the entire trail) I've only managed to find it once. 



          • Peter Burke
            Before the last three hikes with my kids, I kept returning to the JMT to explore new places along the trail, hiking many alternate routes, plus, knowing what
            Message 5 of 12 , Oct 21, 2010
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              Before the last three hikes with my kids, I kept returning to the JMT to
              explore new places along the trail, hiking many alternate routes, plus,
              knowing what to expect after so many trips made another summer in the
              Sierras a sure bet to be a good time. Once you build up your knowledge
              about the area and the logistics, the whole thing becomes "easy" almost.
              It is my virtual back yard now, and I know more about it than any other
              place in the country. I've been to many mountain ranges before I found
              the Sierras, but after that first trip in '88, I haven't really visited
              any other mountains for more than a day. In fact, I am seriously
              considering to relocate to Owens Valley or Mammoth in a few years when
              the children head off to college, because life is too short not to live
              near those mountains year round.

              My last three summers there were totally dedicated to take my kids
              there. The last two trips were focused on trying to do a yo-yo hike
              (their idea, but I'm always up for that kind of stuff). I think if I'll
              ever actually complete a yo-yo, it'll be a solo trip, though, and not
              anytime soon. Doing "another JMT" in another year is one thing - doing
              them back to back does have a very strong "been there done that" taste
              to it, which you feel coming on before you even reach the turnaround
              point. This gets even stronger when you're like me and can remember
              almost every bend on the trail and every creek that you have to cross.
              But it is a reason to do the trail again, and I am sure one day I'll use
              that as my goal of the year again. But who tries this yo-yo stuff anyway?

              Another thing currently being bounced around in my hiking mind is a
              winter or early spring JMT. I'm not sure if I should re-learn how to ski
              (it has been 20 years...), or just focus on a snow-shoe trip. Either
              way, it will be something I've been dreaming of doing for a long time,
              and after living in Wisconsin for 20+ years, winter doesn't really
              bother me any longer. JMT in white - a whole new challenge...

              Summer 2011, which will probably see my 16th trip to the Sierra, will
              most likely be a slightly different thing: not a JMT hike, but a
              collection of multi-day hikes, pushing towards some peaks I usually
              don't have time to climb while on the JMT. I'll be doing 2-5 day long
              hikes from various traiheads to get to places like Black Giant and the
              Ionian Basin, to Mount Lyell, to Banner/Ritter, Mount Goddard, Mount
              Dana, Clouds Rest, perhaps Half Dome, too, although I haven't really
              felt the need to climb it since 1989. I'll also be spending time on a
              mountain bike up to White Mountain and around Mammoth. It's not just the
              JMT - this place is a huge outdoor gym/playground. If I should ever
              manage to live there, I'll pick up hanggliding or paragliding, too, and
              spend endless miles on my dirt bike, climb mountains for breakfast, etc.
              All this is not possible where I live now - a place where "No
              Trespassing" is about all you see along the highway when it's not a
              mall, corn field, or a cow pasture.

              One of my bigger plans for the coming years is to put together my own
              version of the Sierra High Route, mixed with Muir Trail and a good dose
              of my own favorite alternate JMT routes, stitching together a route from
              Mount Dana towering above Tioga Pass and overlooking Mono Lake down to
              Mount Whitney. Connecting these two special places with a new route will
              be another adventure worth dedicating another summer to.

              There are other places you can get attached to (I used to go to the
              mountains of the island Corsica 7 summers in a row back in the 80s when
              I lived in Europe). Being there and spending time there makes these
              places part of your life and you just have to embrace that as part of
              who you are and go with it. Other places, like the very "cultural"
              Austrian Alps or Swiss Alps turned me off totally the first time I got
              there. Those places were not for me, and I could feel that immediately -
              too organized, too structured, all things I wanted to escape from when I
              was growing up. I prefer wild places, open spaces, dryer climates, and
              the dramatic contrasts of the high altitudes the Sierras offer. Give me
              rugged mountains, bears, and no paved roads for 200 miles and I will go
              back there often to recharge so I can handle the next year of what is
              called "normal life."

              Please shoot me if I ever choose to go to Disneyland or on a cruise ship
              vacation.
            • ned@mountaineducation.org
              The awesome air, the granite cathedrals, the crisp, clear, and cold water, the smell of pine amidst the roar of water crashing down the creeks, the thrilling
              Message 6 of 12 , Oct 21, 2010
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                The awesome air,
                the granite cathedrals,
                the crisp, clear, and cold water,
                the smell of pine amidst the roar of water crashing down the creeks,
                the thrilling glissades,
                the occasional primitive flicker of warmth from the softly burning fire under the canopy of forest,
                the high altitude textures of the fallen, yellow, curled pine against the rough, black and white granite beside the newly risen young flowers,
                the dynamic chemistry that surges within me during a thrilling thunderstorm with heavy rain and hail,
                the joys of conquest,
                the communion of the spirit...
                 
                Need I say more?
                 
                 

                Ned Tibbits, Director
                Mountain Education
                1106A Ski Run Blvd
                South Lake Tahoe, Ca. 96150
                    P: 888-996-8333
                    F: 530-541-1456
                    C: 530-721-1551
                    http://www.mountaineducation.org
              • Barbara Karagosian
                Gorgeous Ned; I m just not too sure about the dynamic chemistry of those thunderstorms! Cheers, Barbara
                Message 7 of 12 , Oct 21, 2010
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                  Gorgeous Ned; I'm just not too sure about the dynamic chemistry of those thunderstorms!

                  Cheers, Barbara

                  On Oct 21, 2010, at 11:39 AM, <ned@...> wrote:

                   

                  The awesome air,
                  the granite cathedrals,
                  the crisp, clear, and cold water,
                  the smell of pine amidst the roar of water crashing down the creeks,
                  the thrilling glissades,
                  the occasional primitive flicker of warmth from the softly burning fire under the canopy of forest,
                  the high altitude textures of the fallen, yellow, curled pine against the rough, black and white granite beside the newly risen young flowers,
                  the dynamic chemistry that surges within me during a thrilling thunderstorm with heavy rain and hail,
                  the joys of conquest,
                  the communion of the spirit...
                   
                  Need I say more?
                   
                   

                  Ned Tibbits, Director
                  Mountain Education
                  1106A Ski Run Blvd
                  South Lake Tahoe, Ca. 96150
                      P: 888-996-8333
                      F: 530-541-1456
                      C: 530-721-1551
                      http://www.mountaineducation.org

                • Denise Horen
                  You mentioned predictable weather...what is the approximate date that you start your trips? Just wondering... D. Sent from my iPad ... You mentioned
                  Message 8 of 12 , Oct 23, 2010
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                    You mentioned predictable weather...what is the approximate date that you start your trips?
                    Just wondering...

                    D.

                    Sent from my iPad

                    On Oct 21, 2010, at 3:48 AM, robert shattuck <bobolonius@...> wrote:

                     

                    Why start from the north end (not to mention do it so many times . . . ) ???


                    in a nutshell (for me) it's convenient, cheap, and as well as I know, never, ever boring. 

                    8. easy to acclimate, of course. It's also, for me, very easy to get to yosemite, via amtrak, rather than all the way down to whitney. If for some reason you started at whitney and you were not doing too well, you'd have a heck of a time getting yourself out. 

                    Just think if you got over whitney, but it was hell-ish . . . you were feeling crummy for two days then you had to go over Forester, or not . . . you could be like a marble in a bowl, never making it over the lip ( but Bighorn Plateau would be a sweet spot to be stuck. heavenly) . . . something like that, but basically, it's all about building up to the grand finale. 

                    I've said it before but for me, the big finale is Whitney . . . the big finale is all those amazing passes at the end––it's doing something grand, like spending the night on whitney, or waking up with the sun at trail camp and skipping downhill all the way to burgers and beer (the portal) and then a lovely night of decompressing on the the streets of Lone Pine, in the hot tub at the DOW VILLA. 

                    Most of us only get to do an epic adventure like this once or twice, due to various reasons––why end it down in yosemite valley with all the throngs of fleshy, clean, LOUD tourists, when you can end it up in the heavens. 

                    7. Mud? weather? getting dirty. All part of the fun. leave your soap at home. The only time I've ever gotten muddy on the JMT was when I, one frosty morning, stepped onto a soft bank and it slipped me right into the lake. Got my shorts a little dirty, but no problem. Sierra weather, predictable. I'd have to say, yes––which is why I go the same time every time (or at least the last nine times) 

                    6. must agree. I've seen it a few times and it never gets old . . . it's that, "Range of Light," thing. 

                    5. One of the reasons I've done it so many times is that it's never been perfect and I blame that on the people I meet. Some of them, I've really liked and some not . . . This last time I managed to stick to my solo thing and it was great, but I did realize, I like sharing the experience . . . plus, it's easier in the deep dark night to say, "no, you go out and see if that's really a bear" 

                    4. Having worked at the VVR for a few summers, I don't think I could do the trail without stopping in. I feel at home––but I really disliked that waitress they had on the morning shift this season: loud, obnoxious (Jim, are you hearing me?) . . . I only started dropping down into the Muir Trail Ranch the last two or three trips, but yes, what an angel, PATT is––either way you walk it, stopping in at both the VVR and MTR is well, the other way to say it is––not stopping there is like not bothering to summit whitney when you get to the end. 

                    3. I'd love to do the colorado trail, wether I knew all about it or not . . . but another reason I've done the JMT so many times is it's practical––very close to San Francisco and cheap. I spend maybe three to four hundred bucks for the entire thing . . . food, transport, hotels . . . I did realize on this last trip that I did know everything a little too well––I knew just about every turn, but while it didn't diminish it, I did do a lot of thinking about doing something else . . . if I could afford it. 

                    2. There's so much water on the JMT, but there are a few stretches where a guzzler might find him/herself in trouble, but I doubt it. 

                    1. I'd hate to start at Whitney, if only because I've seen so many sorry people, with that look of, What am I doing. This sucks, in their faces. I think the worst pounding I ever take on the trail is coming down from Pinchot––the last few miles before you get to the bridge, ugh. I'd hate to go up that thing, with all those huge horse steps, no thanks. Much rather do any of the passes, twice!

                    Again, if you equate the trail with heaven and hell (and I am not a believer, but I know heaven when I see it) . . . where would you want to end up . . . give me north to south any time . . . but what do they say, hike your hike. 


                    sparklefart.blogspot.com
                    http://www.summitpost.org/plans/view_activity.php?post_id=6480






                    To: johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com
                    From: roleigh@...
                    Date: Wed, 20 Oct 2010 19:35:29 -0500
                    Subject: [John Muir Trail] Why do the JMT more than 3 times -- people who've done it 4 or more times, please give your reasons

                     
                    I'll be doing the JMT my 4th time this next summer.  I have to justify my choice to some of my fellow hikers who prefer to find new trails.

                    Here are my reasons.  (By the way, Bob, have you done it 10 times?  Incredible, I want to hear from you on this new thread).

                    I find the JMT most inviting to do over and over again for these reasons:

                    1.  One probably gets the best hiking workout in the fewest days in terms of daily ascents and descents due to the numerous very tall passes.  Doing these ascents in many ways is like doing squats, when the uphill trail has plenty of steps that are 12" to 20" tall apiece.  One has to lift their entire body up using only one leg (at a point in time) plus their poles/arms.  It is like doing hundreds of squats a day but having fun.

                    2.  One feels comfortable doing the trail again insofar as knowing where the next water supply exists and one can therefore reduce the water-carrying weight; that brings comfort to the hike.

                    3.  One knows the resupply points and doesn't have to research the hike to death versus doing something new (i.e., like doing a JMT class hike on the Colorado Trail).

                    4.  It enables one to revisit Muir Trail Ranch which is a little bit of Heaven and see again the staff one thinks of as an extended family.

                    5.  One is usually able to find new partners to join in the hike so you don't hike or camp alone.  Those that hike with you for the 20-some days often become new lifelong friends.  If one did a lesser known trail, this would be hard to find more hikers in the group and to avoid camping alone.

                    6.  The trail and scenery is among the best in the world.  The JMT is consistently rated the number one through hike of 200-300 miles in length.

                    7.  The weather is more often predictable than not.  When it rains, you're not hiking in mud as it would be on the AT or other trails.

                    8.  If one starts in Happy Isles, one knows that the altitude will not be so high for several days.  One does not worry about getting altitude sickness.

                    What are some other reasons?  Your input is most appreciated and welcomed.


                    On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 7:19 PM, robert shattuck <bobolonius@...> wrote:


                    Ned, 

                     that's a great reason for me to do #11 . . . find that rock. I also like the plaque on the south side of Glen, that commemorates the one young guy to be killed during the construction of the section there (if not the entire trail) I've only managed to find it once. 



                  • Peter Burke
                    ... how about mid November - predictably bad weather ;-) more seriously - mid August to early September is probably the most reliably nice weather window. I
                    Message 9 of 12 , Oct 23, 2010
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                      Denise Horen wrote:
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > You mentioned predictable weather...what is the approximate date that
                      > you start your trips?
                      > Just wondering...
                      >
                      > D.

                      how about mid November - "predictably" bad weather ;-)

                      more seriously - mid August to early September is probably the most
                      reliably nice weather window. I prefer late June through July, because
                      the mountains are much more interesting then, with snow, water and
                      flowers. My northbound early September hike was probably the dullest JMT
                      I ever hiked - plants burnt out and dry, others dying after the first
                      frost, no water in places where I never had to worry about water before.
                    • Barbara Karagosian
                      Predictable thunderstorms, sun and sometimes snow flurries in July and August! Cheers, Barbara ... Predictable thunderstorms, sun and sometimes snow flurries
                      Message 10 of 12 , Oct 23, 2010
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                        Predictable thunderstorms, sun and sometimes snow flurries in July and August!

                        Cheers, Barbara

                        On Oct 23, 2010, at 2:11 AM, Denise Horen <dhoren10@...> wrote:

                         


                        You mentioned predictable weather...what is the approximate date that you start your trips?
                        Just wondering...

                        D.

                        Sent from my iPad

                        On Oct 21, 2010, at 3:48 AM, robert shattuck <bobolonius@...> wrote:

                         

                        Why start from the north end (not to mention do it so many times . . . ) ???


                        in a nutshell (for me) it's convenient, cheap, and as well as I know, never, ever boring. 

                        8. easy to acclimate, of course. It's also, for me, very easy to get to yosemite, via amtrak, rather than all the way down to whitney. If for some reason you started at whitney and you were not doing too well, you'd have a heck of a time getting yourself out. 

                        Just think if you got over whitney, but it was hell-ish . . . you were feeling crummy for two days then you had to go over Forester, or not . . . you could be like a marble in a bowl, never making it over the lip ( but Bighorn Plateau would be a sweet spot to be stuck. heavenly) . . . something like that, but basically, it's all about building up to the grand finale. 

                        I've said it before but for me, the big finale is Whitney . . . the big finale is all those amazing passes at the end––it's doing something grand, like spending the night on whitney, or waking up with the sun at trail camp and skipping downhill all the way to burgers and beer (the portal) and then a lovely night of decompressing on the the streets of Lone Pine, in the hot tub at the DOW VILLA. 

                        Most of us only get to do an epic adventure like this once or twice, due to various reasons––why end it down in yosemite valley with all the throngs of fleshy, clean, LOUD tourists, when you can end it up in the heavens. 

                        7. Mud? weather? getting dirty. All part of the fun. leave your soap at home. The only time I've ever gotten muddy on the JMT was when I, one frosty morning, stepped onto a soft bank and it slipped me right into the lake. Got my shorts a little dirty, but no problem. Sierra weather, predictable. I'd have to say, yes––which is why I go the same time every time (or at least the last nine times) 

                        6. must agree. I've seen it a few times and it never gets old . . . it's that, "Range of Light," thing. 

                        5. One of the reasons I've done it so many times is that it's never been perfect and I blame that on the people I meet. Some of them, I've really liked and some not . . . This last time I managed to stick to my solo thing and it was great, but I did realize, I like sharing the experience . . . plus, it's easier in the deep dark night to say, "no, you go out and see if that's really a bear" 

                        4. Having worked at the VVR for a few summers, I don't think I could do the trail without stopping in. I feel at home––but I really disliked that waitress they had on the morning shift this season: loud, obnoxious (Jim, are you hearing me?) . . . I only started dropping down into the Muir Trail Ranch the last two or three trips, but yes, what an angel, PATT is––either way you walk it, stopping in at both the VVR and MTR is well, the other way to say it is––not stopping there is like not bothering to summit whitney when you get to the end. 

                        3. I'd love to do the colorado trail, wether I knew all about it or not . . . but another reason I've done the JMT so many times is it's practical––very close to San Francisco and cheap. I spend maybe three to four hundred bucks for the entire thing . . . food, transport, hotels . . . I did realize on this last trip that I did know everything a little too well––I knew just about every turn, but while it didn't diminish it, I did do a lot of thinking about doing something else . . . if I could afford it. 

                        2. There's so much water on the JMT, but there are a few stretches where a guzzler might find him/herself in trouble, but I doubt it. 

                        1. I'd hate to start at Whitney, if only because I've seen so many sorry people, with that look of, What am I doing. This sucks, in their faces. I think the worst pounding I ever take on the trail is coming down from Pinchot––the last few miles before you get to the bridge, ugh. I'd hate to go up that thing, with all those huge horse steps, no thanks. Much rather do any of the passes, twice!

                        Again, if you equate the trail with heaven and hell (and I am not a believer, but I know heaven when I see it) . . . where would you want to end up . . . give me north to south any time . . . but what do they say, hike your hike. 


                        sparklefart.blogspot.com
                        http://www.summitpost.org/plans/view_activity.php?post_id=6480






                        To: johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com
                        From: roleigh@...
                        Date: Wed, 20 Oct 2010 19:35:29 -0500
                        Subject: [John Muir Trail] Why do the JMT more than 3 times -- people who've done it 4 or more times, please give your reasons

                         
                        I'll be doing the JMT my 4th time this next summer.  I have to justify my choice to some of my fellow hikers who prefer to find new trails.

                        Here are my reasons.  (By the way, Bob, have you done it 10 times?  Incredible, I want to hear from you on this new thread).

                        I find the JMT most inviting to do over and over again for these reasons:

                        1.  One probably gets the best hiking workout in the fewest days in terms of daily ascents and descents due to the numerous very tall passes.  Doing these ascents in many ways is like doing squats, when the uphill trail has plenty of steps that are 12" to 20" tall apiece.  One has to lift their entire body up using only one leg (at a point in time) plus their poles/arms.  It is like doing hundreds of squats a day but having fun.

                        2.  One feels comfortable doing the trail again insofar as knowing where the next water supply exists and one can therefore reduce the water-carrying weight; that brings comfort to the hike.

                        3.  One knows the resupply points and doesn't have to research the hike to death versus doing something new (i.e., like doing a JMT class hike on the Colorado Trail).

                        4.  It enables one to revisit Muir Trail Ranch which is a little bit of Heaven and see again the staff one thinks of as an extended family.

                        5.  One is usually able to find new partners to join in the hike so you don't hike or camp alone.  Those that hike with you for the 20-some days often become new lifelong friends.  If one did a lesser known trail, this would be hard to find more hikers in the group and to avoid camping alone.

                        6.  The trail and scenery is among the best in the world.  The JMT is consistently rated the number one through hike of 200-300 miles in length.

                        7.  The weather is more often predictable than not.  When it rains, you're not hiking in mud as it would be on the AT or other trails.

                        8.  If one starts in Happy Isles, one knows that the altitude will not be so high for several days.  One does not worry about getting altitude sickness.

                        What are some other reasons?  Your input is most appreciated and welcomed.


                        On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 7:19 PM, robert shattuck <bobolonius@...> wrote:


                        Ned, 

                         that's a great reason for me to do #11 . . . find that rock. I also like the plaque on the south side of Glen, that commemorates the one young guy to be killed during the construction of the section there (if not the entire trail) I've only managed to find it once. 



                      • Roleigh Martin
                        July 18-Aug 12 is the approximate Trail Duration Window. When it rains, it typically is between 1:30 pm and 5 pm and is light (but may have lightening) and
                        Message 11 of 12 , Oct 23, 2010
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                          July 18-Aug 12 is the approximate Trail Duration Window.  When it rains, it typically is between 1:30 pm and 5 pm and is light (but may have lightening) and lasts under 2 hours.  We plan our hikes to be up and over the passes by noon.  The only pass we hit late and camp at is Island Pass, which is so low anyway, and it's so hard to plan the hike otherwise.

                          On Sat, Oct 23, 2010 at 4:11 AM, Denise Horen <dhoren10@...> wrote:



                          You mentioned predictable weather...what is the approximate date that you start your trips?
                          Just wondering...

                          D.

                          Sent from my iPad

                          On Oct 21, 2010, at 3:48 AM, robert shattuck <bobolonius@...> wrote:

                           

                          Why start from the north end (not to mention do it so many times . . . ) ???


                          in a nutshell (for me) it's convenient, cheap, and as well as I know, never, ever boring. 

                          8. easy to acclimate, of course. It's also, for me, very easy to get to yosemite, via amtrak, rather than all the way down to whitney. If for some reason you started at whitney and you were not doing too well, you'd have a heck of a time getting yourself out. 

                          Just think if you got over whitney, but it was hell-ish . . . you were feeling crummy for two days then you had to go over Forester, or not . . . you could be like a marble in a bowl, never making it over the lip ( but Bighorn Plateau would be a sweet spot to be stuck. heavenly) . . . something like that, but basically, it's all about building up to the grand finale. 

                          I've said it before but for me, the big finale is Whitney . . . the big finale is all those amazing passes at the end––it's doing something grand, like spending the night on whitney, or waking up with the sun at trail camp and skipping downhill all the way to burgers and beer (the portal) and then a lovely night of decompressing on the the streets of Lone Pine, in the hot tub at the DOW VILLA. 

                          Most of us only get to do an epic adventure like this once or twice, due to various reasons––why end it down in yosemite valley with all the throngs of fleshy, clean, LOUD tourists, when you can end it up in the heavens. 

                          7. Mud? weather? getting dirty. All part of the fun. leave your soap at home. The only time I've ever gotten muddy on the JMT was when I, one frosty morning, stepped onto a soft bank and it slipped me right into the lake. Got my shorts a little dirty, but no problem. Sierra weather, predictable. I'd have to say, yes––which is why I go the same time every time (or at least the last nine times) 

                          6. must agree. I've seen it a few times and it never gets old . . . it's that, "Range of Light," thing. 

                          5. One of the reasons I've done it so many times is that it's never been perfect and I blame that on the people I meet. Some of them, I've really liked and some not . . . This last time I managed to stick to my solo thing and it was great, but I did realize, I like sharing the experience . . . plus, it's easier in the deep dark night to say, "no, you go out and see if that's really a bear" 

                          4. Having worked at the VVR for a few summers, I don't think I could do the trail without stopping in. I feel at home––but I really disliked that waitress they had on the morning shift this season: loud, obnoxious (Jim, are you hearing me?) . . . I only started dropping down into the Muir Trail Ranch the last two or three trips, but yes, what an angel, PATT is––either way you walk it, stopping in at both the VVR and MTR is well, the other way to say it is––not stopping there is like not bothering to summit whitney when you get to the end. 

                          3. I'd love to do the colorado trail, wether I knew all about it or not . . . but another reason I've done the JMT so many times is it's practical––very close to San Francisco and cheap. I spend maybe three to four hundred bucks for the entire thing . . . food, transport, hotels . . . I did realize on this last trip that I did know everything a little too well––I knew just about every turn, but while it didn't diminish it, I did do a lot of thinking about doing something else . . . if I could afford it. 

                          2. There's so much water on the JMT, but there are a few stretches where a guzzler might find him/herself in trouble, but I doubt it. 

                          1. I'd hate to start at Whitney, if only because I've seen so many sorry people, with that look of, What am I doing. This sucks, in their faces. I think the worst pounding I ever take on the trail is coming down from Pinchot––the last few miles before you get to the bridge, ugh. I'd hate to go up that thing, with all those huge horse steps, no thanks. Much rather do any of the passes, twice!

                          Again, if you equate the trail with heaven and hell (and I am not a believer, but I know heaven when I see it) . . . where would you want to end up . . . give me north to south any time . . . but what do they say, hike your hike. 


                          sparklefart.blogspot.com
                          http://www.summitpost.org/plans/view_activity.php?post_id=6480






                          To: johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com
                          From: roleigh@...
                          Date: Wed, 20 Oct 2010 19:35:29 -0500
                          Subject: [John Muir Trail] Why do the JMT more than 3 times -- people who've done it 4 or more times, please give your reasons

                           
                          I'll be doing the JMT my 4th time this next summer.  I have to justify my choice to some of my fellow hikers who prefer to find new trails.

                          Here are my reasons.  (By the way, Bob, have you done it 10 times?  Incredible, I want to hear from you on this new thread).

                          I find the JMT most inviting to do over and over again for these reasons:

                          1.  One probably gets the best hiking workout in the fewest days in terms of daily ascents and descents due to the numerous very tall passes.  Doing these ascents in many ways is like doing squats, when the uphill trail has plenty of steps that are 12" to 20" tall apiece.  One has to lift their entire body up using only one leg (at a point in time) plus their poles/arms.  It is like doing hundreds of squats a day but having fun.

                          2.  One feels comfortable doing the trail again insofar as knowing where the next water supply exists and one can therefore reduce the water-carrying weight; that brings comfort to the hike.

                          3.  One knows the resupply points and doesn't have to research the hike to death versus doing something new (i.e., like doing a JMT class hike on the Colorado Trail).

                          4.  It enables one to revisit Muir Trail Ranch which is a little bit of Heaven and see again the staff one thinks of as an extended family.

                          5.  One is usually able to find new partners to join in the hike so you don't hike or camp alone.  Those that hike with you for the 20-some days often become new lifelong friends.  If one did a lesser known trail, this would be hard to find more hikers in the group and to avoid camping alone.

                          6.  The trail and scenery is among the best in the world.  The JMT is consistently rated the number one through hike of 200-300 miles in length.

                          7.  The weather is more often predictable than not.  When it rains, you're not hiking in mud as it would be on the AT or other trails.

                          8.  If one starts in Happy Isles, one knows that the altitude will not be so high for several days.  One does not worry about getting altitude sickness.

                          What are some other reasons?  Your input is most appreciated and welcomed.


                          On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 7:19 PM, robert shattuck <bobolonius@...> wrote:


                          Ned, 

                           that's a great reason for me to do #11 . . . find that rock. I also like the plaque on the south side of Glen, that commemorates the one young guy to be killed during the construction of the section there (if not the entire trail) I've only managed to find it once. 






                        • clairehiker
                          You so eloquently expressed some of my thoughts. We actually moved to the eastern sierra about 6 years ago and have not regretted it.
                          Message 12 of 12 , Nov 2, 2010
                          • 0 Attachment
                            You so eloquently expressed some of my thoughts. We actually moved to the eastern sierra about 6 years ago and have not regretted it.

                            --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, Peter Burke <pburke@...> wrote:
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Before the last three hikes with my kids, I kept returning to the JMT to
                            > explore new places along the trail, hiking many alternate routes, plus,
                            > knowing what to expect after so many trips made another summer in the
                            > Sierras a sure bet to be a good time. Once you build up your knowledge
                            > about the area and the logistics, the whole thing becomes "easy" almost.
                            > It is my virtual back yard now, and I know more about it than any other
                            > place in the country. I've been to many mountain ranges before I found
                            > the Sierras, but after that first trip in '88, I haven't really visited
                            > any other mountains for more than a day. In fact, I am seriously
                            > considering to relocate to Owens Valley or Mammoth in a few years when
                            > the children head off to college, because life is too short not to live
                            > near those mountains year round.
                            >
                            > My last three summers there were totally dedicated to take my kids
                            > there. The last two trips were focused on trying to do a yo-yo hike
                            > (their idea, but I'm always up for that kind of stuff). I think if I'll
                            > ever actually complete a yo-yo, it'll be a solo trip, though, and not
                            > anytime soon. Doing "another JMT" in another year is one thing - doing
                            > them back to back does have a very strong "been there done that" taste
                            > to it, which you feel coming on before you even reach the turnaround
                            > point. This gets even stronger when you're like me and can remember
                            > almost every bend on the trail and every creek that you have to cross.
                            > But it is a reason to do the trail again, and I am sure one day I'll use
                            > that as my goal of the year again. But who tries this yo-yo stuff anyway?
                            >
                            > Another thing currently being bounced around in my hiking mind is a
                            > winter or early spring JMT. I'm not sure if I should re-learn how to ski
                            > (it has been 20 years...), or just focus on a snow-shoe trip. Either
                            > way, it will be something I've been dreaming of doing for a long time,
                            > and after living in Wisconsin for 20+ years, winter doesn't really
                            > bother me any longer. JMT in white - a whole new challenge...
                            >
                            > Summer 2011, which will probably see my 16th trip to the Sierra, will
                            > most likely be a slightly different thing: not a JMT hike, but a
                            > collection of multi-day hikes, pushing towards some peaks I usually
                            > don't have time to climb while on the JMT. I'll be doing 2-5 day long
                            > hikes from various traiheads to get to places like Black Giant and the
                            > Ionian Basin, to Mount Lyell, to Banner/Ritter, Mount Goddard, Mount
                            > Dana, Clouds Rest, perhaps Half Dome, too, although I haven't really
                            > felt the need to climb it since 1989. I'll also be spending time on a
                            > mountain bike up to White Mountain and around Mammoth. It's not just the
                            > JMT - this place is a huge outdoor gym/playground. If I should ever
                            > manage to live there, I'll pick up hanggliding or paragliding, too, and
                            > spend endless miles on my dirt bike, climb mountains for breakfast, etc.
                            > All this is not possible where I live now - a place where "No
                            > Trespassing" is about all you see along the highway when it's not a
                            > mall, corn field, or a cow pasture.
                            >
                            > One of my bigger plans for the coming years is to put together my own
                            > version of the Sierra High Route, mixed with Muir Trail and a good dose
                            > of my own favorite alternate JMT routes, stitching together a route from
                            > Mount Dana towering above Tioga Pass and overlooking Mono Lake down to
                            > Mount Whitney. Connecting these two special places with a new route will
                            > be another adventure worth dedicating another summer to.
                            >
                            > There are other places you can get attached to (I used to go to the
                            > mountains of the island Corsica 7 summers in a row back in the 80s when
                            > I lived in Europe). Being there and spending time there makes these
                            > places part of your life and you just have to embrace that as part of
                            > who you are and go with it. Other places, like the very "cultural"
                            > Austrian Alps or Swiss Alps turned me off totally the first time I got
                            > there. Those places were not for me, and I could feel that immediately -
                            > too organized, too structured, all things I wanted to escape from when I
                            > was growing up. I prefer wild places, open spaces, dryer climates, and
                            > the dramatic contrasts of the high altitudes the Sierras offer. Give me
                            > rugged mountains, bears, and no paved roads for 200 miles and I will go
                            > back there often to recharge so I can handle the next year of what is
                            > called "normal life."
                            >
                            > Please shoot me if I ever choose to go to Disneyland or on a cruise ship
                            > vacation.
                            >
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