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Split & Two Step
Begins: Jul 23, 2020
Date: Tue, Jul 21st, 2020
Start: Pleasanton, elev 350 feet
End: Pleasanton , elev 350 ft
Daily Distance: 0
Daily Ascent: 0
Daily Descent: 0
Max Elevation: 350
Entry Visits: 160
Journal Visits: 2,178
Guestbook Views: 51
Guestbook Entrys: 4
Final preparations begin
Final preparations begin
Its Tuesday, and with only one day left after today to prepare, it was time to begin the final push to assemble all of our gear in preparation for a 6am Thursday morning departure. Two Step made spreadsheets for our itinerary and meal plan, and has been dehydrating and assembling meals. The picture shows everything we will eat for thirteen days on the trail. She has picked out all our favorite foods, and since we are on a relatively short trip and dont expect to get into serious hiker-hunger, our daily food weight is a little lighter than usual - about 1.35 lbs per person per day.
We learned during our ranger orientation, done by phone, that bear spray is considered a weapon in these national parks, so we are gladly leaving that behind. However, we still have to take our Bearikade bear canister, which adds 2.25 lbs to our base weight. Ouch.
Both of us are going through our last excel spreadsheet of items from last years short partial CDT hike, and we have very little new from last year. We are trying to drop a little weight on this short trip - even going with very light thin plastic ponchos instead of our marmot precip rain jackets. They, and other optional items, will stay in our car and can be switched in when we complete the first half of our figure-8 hike on Day 7 and pick up our resupply.
This last weekend we were able to help my niece, Amy Auble, and her three friends (Abby, Kyle, and Clay) stage themselves at Tuolumne Meadows in Yosemite. We then walked with them on their first day up Lyle Canyon at the start of their John Muir Trail hike. It was a beautiful day as we left Tuolumne Meadows, and everyone was exuberant at the start of an incredible adventure. About five miles down the canyon, the four JMT hikers stopped for the night - a short day to kick off much longer and more challenging days to come. We watched Amy and Abby set up our old - but refurbished - Zpacks Triplex tent as heavy clouds rolled in and thunder began to boom down the valley. Just as we were preparing to leave, a heavy hail and rain storm started, and Two Step and I sheltered in Amy and Abbys tent for about 30 minutes. We had spent quite a bit of effort to make sure our old Triplex was well sealed after 3300 miles of tough backpacking on the CT and CDT (the cuban fiber repair tape provided by Zpacks is incredible). We said our goodbyes and hiked back out in a light rain, again reminded that summer storms in the Sierras can be very serious - the hailstones were the size of large peas and made an impressive impact on the roof of the tent.
That night, sitting outside a small rented cabin, I spotted comet Neowise for the first time. Two Step and I watched it for almost an hour as the sky darkened and it headed downward closer and closer to the horizon. The long tail of Neowise was particularly impressive through the binoculars I had brought along to observe this once in a lifetime celestial event. Very exciting.
We spent the next two days hiking at altitude in the Sierras, including a trip up to the summit of Clouds Rest (9931 feet). We slacked packed our day trips, but still hope we gained a little altitude acclimatization, for the first day of our SEKI hike will be quite challenging.
From Pleasanton ,
Split and Two Step
Split And Two Step's 2019 Big SEKI Loop
Other Trail is located off the beaten path, somewhere between the soles of your feet and your imagination.
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