View/Sign my Guestbook
Begins: Jun 20, 2008
Date: Sun, Jun 22nd, 2008
Start: Miller's Lake
End: Lower Kerrick Canyon
Daily Distance: 19.9
Trip Distance: 980.2
Entry Lat: 37.994201
Entry Lng: -119.41937
Entry Visits: 712
Journal Visits: 41,152
Guestbook Views: 3,779
Guestbook Entrys: 47
Pacific Crest Trail Map
(Click image for full size)
Trail near Kerrick Canyon
Yesterday I was able to keep my shoes dry during the fords. I would either go up or downstream to find a fallen tree, or take my shoes & socks off and cross barefoot. With no shoes or socks on the water is even colder, plus there is always the chance of cutting your feet. The last time I forded today without my shoes I threw them across and they almost bounced back into the stream. I didn't take the time to strap them to my pack, and another hiker lost his shoes that way. He had to hike many miles back to Yosemite Valley in flip flops (Camp Shoes).
Today there where just too many fords to do that and taking my shoes off was slowing me down. So taking the lead from Brit & Irish, I just walked straight through spending little or no time looking for a drier route. The fords coupled with the snow makes it impossible to keep dry feet.
I saw Stone Dancer hiking in the opposite direction, but didn't really stop to talk. Seemed odd. Later I learned that she said the ford at Kerrick Canyon was chest deep & too dangerous when she arrived that late the previous afternoon. Snow usually melts during the day and the streams become deeper. At night the snow usually refreezes, and the streams become shallower and the current isn't as strong.
The trail disappeared under the snow and I bushwhacked down Kerrick Canyon. Quite steep and I slide around in the snow. I wasnt carrying crampons, just an ice axe. When I arrived at the Kerrick Canyon ford downriver later that afternoon, the current was quite strong. Sauerkraut, Brit, and Irish, were already on the other side. They were setting up camp. I didn't want to start out my morning in cold wet clothes. Besides if I forded now I didn't have to camp alone. I was able to find a shallower route with the help of Sauerkraut.
I don't know what I was thinking but, I was doing this ford totally wrong. I was too worried about staying dry & trying to stay on top of some rocks - that hikers use later in the season when the stream is much lower. Then the current began to shift my body. I knew I was going down, so I stepped of the rock & leaned into the current. As luck would have it, my head was facing the current and I was able to quickly get back up to my feet. My head didn't go under, but I was soaked up to my chest. I finished the ford, and Sauerkraut was happy he didn't have to come get me. In areas like this it is really smart to either hike with someone or agree to wait for the other when one reaches a crossing like this.
The sun was still out, so I quickly changed into my dry sleep clothes and put on my camp shoes. Hung my hiking clothes and shoes out to dry. Brit and Irish had built a small fire, so I cooked and hung out with them for a bit.
BTW the trail is on top that knife-edge of snow to the right.
The Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) is a 2,650-mile national scenic trail that runs from Mexico to Canada through California, Oregon and Washington. The PCT traverses 24 national forests, 37 wilderness areas and 7 national parks. The PCT passes through 6 out of 7 of North Americas ecozones. Learn more: www.pcta.org