Day 53: A mostly hiking day

Thurs. 6/13/13
15.5 PCT miles (Miles 750.8 – 766.3)
+ 3.9 miles of the Whitney Spur Trail
Chicken Spring Lake – Guitar Lake via lower Crabtree Meadow

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Loving these green meadows

Mileage was confusing today. We hiked a total of 19.4 miles. From where we camped last night to lower Crabtree Meadow was 15.5 miles, then from there we got off the PCT and onto the Whitney Spur Trail. We hiked 3.9 miles of the Whitney Spur to Guitar Lake, and tomorrow we will hike another 4.5 miles to the summit of Mt. Whitney. Mt. frickin’ Whitney!

Today was all hiking. Tears and I hiked our own pace, and we’d plan to meet up at either a time or a place every so often. It seems to work really well. I’m really enjoying mornings to hike at a steady pace, quiet my mind for a while, and maybe think a little.

We woke up to a pretty cold morning today, so as soon as we were out of our sleeping bags it was all business. Bathroom, get dressed, breakfast, pack up, brush teeth, shoes on, hike…

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Brrrrrr...

We had a couple of really steep climbs today, and we’re in really rocky country, so at times there would be giant stone steps that we’d have to step up on or down from. I think they’re mostly to control trail erosion because most hikers don’t have 5-foot legs. They can be hard on the knees, so I tried to take them slow and walk around them when I could. I’m gonna need these knees for a lot of miles yet!

We get new mountains to see off in the distance every day. Some get closer, the ones behind us disappear, and these new ones pop into view.

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Mountains... again.

We also hiked into some thicker mountain forest with streams, flowers, grass, small meadows… it keeps changing on us – always keeping things interesting.

I think today was a very typical hiking day, and I feel like there’s not a ton to talk about. I wish on days like these that I could somehow take you through in fast-motion or something, because it was a really fun day. I’d climb, reach the top, climb back down, find a stream, take a break, climb back up, and so on.

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Stream!

Mt. Whitney was on my mind a lot today, too. We hope to get up early for a sunrise summit. I can’t wait to share all about that tomorrow. I pray we handle the elevation okay. We saw one friend that had gotten down this morning and was just getting his appetite back when we passed through around 4pm. Elevation sickness is no fun at all. I sure hope he’s feeling better.

I am going to try to sleep now. 1:30 am is going to come way too fast!


Tonight I love marmots. I saw my first few today and they’re so cute!

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Marmot!

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Very cool gate... and easy to use.

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A great lake on the Whitney Spur Trail

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