Not letting the quitting spot get to me
We slept the night a mile short of Muir Pass when an unthreatening sky turned into thunderstorms and snow at 2 am. As we heard the pass above us get pummeled with lightening—the closest strike less than 1 mile away, we took down the pole supporting our tarp-tent letting the tarp lay over us as it accumulated snow. *That* was not fun.
What was fun? Hanging out with Super Dave on top of Muir Pass. Despite miles and miles of snow in any direction, a marmot seemed to appear out of no where to welcome us. Adorable little trickster!
We saw our first ranger in the Sierra who asked to see my thru-hiking permit. Many thru-hikers ignore Sierra regulations and don’t carry bear canisters (big, heavy plastic containers to “protect” your food from bears). Our bear can was way too small for all our food, and we were terrified of running into a ranger, but he didn’t ask any questions.
Two fords, Evolution Creek and Bear Creek, scared me, but with the help of hiking, we made it past the waist-deep, fast-rushing water alive. Every year, a thru-hiker dies in a ford. In Northern Yosemite, Kerrick Creek threatened to be that ford, especially since we got there at 7 pm when it was raging the highest. We lucked out, though, and found a fallen log to cross.
Lots of mosquitoes in Yosemite. Only one bear sighting around Highway 50 in Tahoe. Despite ditching the bear canister, no bear has gotten our food. Met my parents in Tahoe for a day and my uncle in Truckee. I’m on my 5th pair of sunglasses (broken, bad fit, broken, broken).
Liz "Snorkel" Thomas
Liz Thomas is a well-traveled adventure athlete most known for breaking the women’s unsupported speed record on the Appalachian Trail in 2011. She has completed the Triple Crown of Hiking–the Appalachian Trail, the 2,650 mile Pacific Crest Trail, and 3,100 mile Continental Divide Trail–and has backpacked over 15,000 miles across the United States. While not on trail, Liz lives in Denver, Colorado.