Friday, July 11, 2014

Day 13 : Wallace Creek

Friday July 11, 2014
14 Miles Today
223 Total Miles

I've got short-timeritus. It's Friday and I have gone over Forester Pass. The terrain has changed into a high altitude plateau. There are few trees except down in the valleys where the creeks run. Away from the creeks it looks like a rocky desert wasteland. As I sit and write I sit on the biggest rock on the Bighorn Plateau. It's really not much of a rock compared to some of the rocks I have climbed over on this trip. 

My friends Jason, Jana, and Merrick are considering camping here if the weather is nice. Right now the weather is fabulous. My friends however are probably about three hours from arriving here. Three hours in these mountains and it could be raining...

...Jason, Jana, and Merrick had a change of plans. They now want to exit on Saturday rather than Sunday. This means they have to put in big miles, bigger than I want to do. We hiked together from Bighorn Plateau where I bid them adieu. They were a lot a fun to hike with and were really fun to talk with.

Wallace Creek is a great temperature I completely submerged myself for only the second time in thirteen days. Like last time, I combined laundry and bathing into a single convenient process. I am now resting in my tent while my wash-and-wear clothes dry. 

I left my camp early this morning. Earlier than my normal early. The climb to Forester Pass was some of the coldest hiking I have done all trip. The wind whipped down from the pass right into my face. It was cold enough that I had to change out of my traditional hiking attire into my more formal mountaineering wear. I was surprised how much better and stronger I felt climbing Forester compared to Glen or Mather. Forester is higher. Perhaps it is the lighter pack weight and that I have been living at ten thousand feet for over a week.

As I climbed I ate snacks. I had potato chips, M&Ms, Beef Jerky, dehydrated blueberries, a white chocolate and macadamia nut Clif bar, cashews, almonds and pistachios. The climb seems easier when I am eating. I need to make sure I save a lot of snacks for Whitney.

I found the plaque that Paul has told me about.

For some reason the Simon and Garfunkel song Sound of Silence was bouncing around in my head. That song I have never liked. There is a line in it " the ____ god they made." I kept trying to think of what kind of god they made. I have no idea why that phrase kept repeating itself over and over again. I tried every word I could think of in the blank. Then suddenly right before the summit I remembered 'neon', "to the neon god they made." 

I met a couple of guys on the pass who started a day after me and will finish a day before. They were really putting the miles in. 

There are ten Boy Scouts and leaders camped here at Wallace Creek. They have the same itinerary as I do. Guitar Lake tomorrow night then summit Mt. Whitney on Sunday. I think they then plan to camp one more night before Whitney Portal whereas I plan to hike all the way out on Sunday.

Mt. Whitney in the distance.

Mustache cloud

It's about four miles from Guitar Lake to the summit. I think that if I leave by three-thirty AM I should be on the summit by five thirty. That gives me about thirty minutes of pre dawn wiggle room. 

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