Sept 19: Desolation Wilderness Day 1

Sept 19: Desolation Wilderness Day 1

Echo Lake to Gilmore Lake: 11 miles

(NOTE: There was no stable cell signal during the hike, so nothing I wrote got posted. Now that we’re done, I’ll post as I can in chronological order.)

I’m going to include both of these maps each day. The topographical map shows the geography, path the trail takes and the relationship of places. The elevation map gives you a sense of how much energy it takes to get from one place to another.

Get up at 6:30. The rain has ended. The sky is clear. I check out at 7. We get to Echo Lake at 8. When we are within a few miles of the lake, on small roads lined with cottages, Sherman gets excited. Tail wagging. Looking out the front window. Does he remember driving in here last year? We’re headed to the same trailhead parking…

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Sept 18: Change of Plans

Sept 18: Change of Plans

We left Ojai at 4:30am with the intent to drive to the Echo Lake Trailhead and hike about 4 miles into the Desolation Wilderness. The weather forecast was for intermittent drizzle in the area ending around 1pm. When we drove through Sacramento this was the weather. But, at 2pm, as I drove up the mountains that surround Tahoe, the rain got heavier and heavier. As I approached the turnoff to Echo Lake it was pouring. I saw a sign for a Best Western, which I know takes pets, drove in to see about a room. The woman at the counter said it had been raining all day. She said her young daughter had asked at breakfast, “Where are my rain boots?” “Rain boots? It partly sunny…” “Well mom, the weather I just heard is that it’s going to rain pretty hard today.”

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Tahoe Rim Trail Redux

Tahoe Rim Trail Redux

PHOTO: Testing out the tent in Libbey Park. Haven’t used this tent in 5 years. Needed to be sure I remembered how to set it up and that I had all the parts. Success on both.

Sherman and I are heading back to The Tahoe Rim Trail on Wednesday the 18th, picking up the section we didn’t complete because I rolled by ankle.

The ankle and knee are now fine after some wonderful physical therapy support with Joanna at Swanner Physical Therapy.

We’re starting at Echo Lake and going through the Desolation Wilderness up to Tahoe City. It’s 50-60 miles depending on how many mountain lakes we hike down to to camp. It’ll take us 6-7 days.

I’ll be writing and photoing as we go. If I have strong enough cell signal along the way I’ll do some posting from the trail.

If no signal, I’ll do the posting from Tahoe City the night we stay over before driving home.

I’ll be carrying my inReach SE which sends a GPS ping to the map you can find on www.wynmatthews.com. Click the Map link in the Menu. The device also allows me to communitace with Search and Rescue if needed.

Sherman and I didn’t do as much preparation hiking as in past years. I think we’re ready. But we won’t find out until we actually hit the trail and it’s 7500-10,000 ft elevation.

We plan on being back by the 27th if all goes according to plan.

Enjoy! We will…

Much love,

Wyn and Sherman

0923: Day 12

0923: Day 12

September 23: Zero Miles

The featured image is a pastel in the room where we’re staying. Love it!

The ankle…

It’s about the same as last night. Slightly injured. Full mobility in terms of walking and squatting. But strained in terms of rolling outward.

So… we’re done.

It’s been an interesting process over the last 24 hours. The conflicting desires to finish the hike and to honor the fact of the injury.

Being true to what is… the rolled ankle… (more…)

0922 TRT: Day 11

0922 TRT: Day 11

September 22: 14 miles

Watson Lake to Tahoe City

In my mind I want to get up early and be hiking by 8. Such a sucker for ideal plans! We’re hiking at 9:30…

Remember on an earlier day my asking why it’s taking longer to get packed and going on the TRT that it did on The Long Trail? Well, there were Shelters on The Long Trail. We only slept in the tent three times. The tent takes 20 minutes to setup or take down. The gear in the tent is harder to get in and out and has to be organized along the sides. In the shelters there’s no space constraint. Ha… took 10 days to recall and understand that!

Today is going to be a long day. (more…)

0921 TRT: Day 10

0921 TRT: Day 10

September 21: 6 miles

Brockwood Summit Trailhead to Watson Lake

The night time temps are still around 30. The wind has calmed to light breezes, which makes the “feels like” temp much more pleasant not only in the tent but outside.

I keep “wanting” to get up early and get going… But the warmth of the tent, the quilt, Sherman under the quilt with me is a more immediate and present experience of coziness, stillness and peace. So, we doze together until the sun is above the mountains and the air begins to warm.

Sherman’s support while I am outside gathering our Ursak bags, organizing packs, breakfast, etc. (more…)