Royce Lakes

French Lake to Granite Park (12 miles, +2,500/-2,500 feet). Half Cookie got cold last night so we closed the storm flaps on the tent.  While that did warm things up a few degrees, it also exacerbated condensation and we awoke to a very wet tent!  Not to worry though — out here it is pretty…

French Lake

Pine Creek Pass Trailhead to French Lake (9 miles, +4,300/-500 feet). Well, it’s time once again for my biannual trip with Half Cookie!  The grandparents always come down for our kids’ birthdays, and since that means we have built-in childcare we usually organize a trip before or after (thanks mom and dad!). Half Cookie really…

Spectacular Summit Peak

Guthook CDT mile 854.4 to Elwood Pass (mile 863.3) (8.9 miles, +1,300/-1,700 feet). Okay, I know I have said this before, but the scenery today might just have been the most spectacular I have ever seen. Now that I have built up your expectations, let me begin at the beginning! The altitude, sleep deprivation, and…

Rain, Rain, Go Away

Guthook CDT mile 844.6 to mile 854.4 (9.8 miles, +2,500/-1,800 feet). So I learned something last night: sometimes a site can be too slope-y! My sleeping pad kept sliding down the floor of my tent, and I kept sliding down my sleeping pad.  At one point I tied my pad to the tent, which helped a little,…

Surviving the Storm

Guthook CDT mile 829.4 to mile 844.6 (15.2 miles, +1,700/-2,300 feet). I slept surprisingly well last night.  In the past I have always looked for dead flat places to camp, but in a wet environment like this good drainage is key, and good drainage usually means a bit of a slope. Around 6am I jumped…

Welcome to the CDT!

Cumbres Pass (Guthook CDT mile 811.7) to mile 829.4 (17.7 miles, +3,800/-1,700 feet). I was very fortunate to learn recently that one of the people I work with (trailname: Vogue) is a thru-hiking machine!  He has done the AT, the CDT, the PCT (twice!), the CT, and even the GHT (Grand Himalayan Trail). So when…

Indian Creek Loop

Penny Pines to PCT to Pine Mountain Trail to Indian Creek Trail to Noble Canyon Trail to Penny Pines (11 miles, +1,500/-1,500 feet). Half Cookie and I are getting ready for an August trip to the Sierra and she has been struggling to find a pair of shoes that work for her on longer hikes….

A Change of Heart

Moose Lake to Wolverton Trailhead via Emerald Lake (12 miles, +1,000/-4,200 feet). Yesterday I had a bit of a meltdown. When I got back to camp I was so tired of walking in the slushy suncups and so anxious about doing icy traverses that I suggested to MixMaster that we just leave Moose Lake the…

The Tablelands

Moose Lake to Kings-Kaweah Divide near Big Bird Peak and back (8 miles, +1,500/-1,500 feet). Today was exhausting. I mean really, really exhausting. But crazy beautiful. I guess the best things in life are not free. We had originally planned to pack up and head over Pterodactyl Pass to Lonely Lake, but the ranger at…

Moose Lake

Wolverton Trailhead to Moose Lake (10 miles, +3,900/-500 feet). Ever since I hiked the Watchtower Trail to Heather Lake with ZoZoZoom I have wanted to do a cross-country trip in the Tablelands.  They looked so beautiful from a distance, with their gentle granite slopes above the tree line. And what better time to go?  I…

Mount Baldy

Manker Flats trailhead loop to Baldy Summit then Devil’s Backbone (12 miles, +4,000/-4,000 feet). Time for another hike! I was supposed to go back to the Sierra today but I have been fighting a minor cold and my buddy MixMaster has been having some minor knee issues. We have another trip to the Sierra coming…

Kearsarge Pass

Bullfrog Lake to Onion Valley (7 miles, +1,000/-2,700 feet). So, last night was my worst night ever in a tent. All night long I was tortured by the fear that Kearsarge Pass was wrapped in a wall of ice just like Forester. The words of the thru-hiker I met before my trip rang in my ears:…