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Jack and Barb
Begins: Apr 17, 2011
Date: Mon, Jun 13th, 2011
Start: Mile 770 Wallace Creek
End: Mile 774
Daily Distance: 4
Trip Distance: 774.4
Entry Visits: 1,568
Journal Visits: 342,860
Guestbook Views: 160,943
Guestbook Entrys: 482
Fully Engaged in the Sierras
Oh what a wonderful day!
We slept in late at our great little patch of dirt, right by Wallace Creek, meanwhile, DnB were camping miles away and were up at 4:30 am for an attempt up the West side of Whitney.
Big rookie mistake today. We left our shoes and socks outside last night and they were frozen this morning. Uggh. Ever try to put your foot into a frozen shoe? Fortunately they are trail type shoes and we could work them around and loosen them up enough to get them on.
We checked out the river, it had fallen quite a bit since last night and Jack scouted out a good crossing a bit up stream from our campsite. This was our first really serious water crossing and we zipped right across. Not much time later was the much more difficult crossing of Wright Creek. This looked difficult but do-able. Ok, in we went, together, arms locked. We each had one trekking pole on the outboard side. This seemed to be a good way to increase our stability. The water was knee to thigh deep and moving fast. We used our trekking poles to provide three points of support each, and, with every stable placement of feet and poles, we worked our way across the creek.
Meanwhile, up on the approach to Mt. Whitney, Duncan and Barbara had started up at 5 am and experienced very icy conditions. By 5:45 they realized that they would either have to back off and wait for the snow to soften. But this meant loss of time which might keep them from getting to 774 by evening. The other option was to scrap the attempt and head back to the campsite.
So, here they were hanging from ice axes on some horrifically slick ice face when Duncan cuts in a couple of steps with the adze of his axe (that's the opposite end of the pointy side). He drops to one knee, pulls out a ring and asks Barbara to marry him.
Barbara, seeing the glimmer of the ring in the morning light started to cry. Of course she said "Yes" - They are a great couple.
Deciding to back off, they headed back to Guitar Lake, packed up and lit off for mile 774 - The going would be slow and they had rivers to cross, faster, stronger rivers, as the water volume increased appreciably in the latter part of the day.
We had an easy day. We spent 4 hours going a big 4 miles over slippery snow. It was about noon when we reached 774. There was a bear box there, we could see it! Bears would be crazy to be running about in this stuff so we really had no use for the box plus we have bear cannisters which we use instead. So far we have not seen one bear track (since Badden Powell, near Wrightwood), nor have we seen any bear scat.
It was a sunny day with no wind and we had a wonderful time hanging out and drying all of our wet socks and shoes. We pitched the tent near the frozen lake and kicked back. Later in the day, four thru hikers showed up and were moving on. Tyndall Creek was just a half mile away so we joined them to scope out the crossing. For all the hype Tyndall gets, this would be an easy one for us tomorrow.
As the day passed and evening approached, Dunc and Barb had not showed up. They would be here in the morning. We could sleep in late again.
Jack And Barb Take On The PCT
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