8/23/18 and 8/24/18
Miles – 17.26
Total miles – 175.25
Last night was cold. Since our camp was in a deep valley near a river we had a cold breeze blowing across the tents all night. We packed quickly and started hiking toward the sun. There was frost on the ground as we went up the valley. It did not take long to reach Tolly’s Hole, a very nice meadow in a hanging valley. At this point the trail climbs the valley wall. Climbing, we soon crossed into the sunshine. About mid way up the valley wall, we had to stop and pull off our coats and long sleeve shirts. Soon we reached the top and the hiking got easier. We continued on and came to the shore of Lake Virginia. There was no wind and the lake was mirror like, reflecting the mountains to the South. We crossed it’s inlet and hiked over a small ridge and then dropped down to Purple Lake. Here we filtered water and ate before continuing on. The trail sweeps out onto the side of the mountain, traversing North, and then into the next drainage. Soon we came to the cut off to Duck Lake. Here we had to make a decision, do we follow the trail we know, or do we go over Duck Lake Pass to Lake Mary and then into Mammoth. We had never heard of this route into Mammoth and we did not know if there was any transportation into Mammoth. We did not want to get stuck at a trail head so we followed what we knew. Our trail contoured around an edge and followed the ridge down. We stopped once to eat the last of our food, then we hiked on. The terrain changed from granite to volcanic as we dropped towards Reds Meadow. At the last stream crossing, before Reds, we stopped to soak our feet, then it was on to town. We hiked up to the store at Reds Meadow and got food and drinks. Then boarded the bus for Mammoth. We needed to change buses at Mammoth Mountain. I called a hotel and got a room for two nights. As we were waiting for the bus a man asked if we wanted a ride to town so the four of us and one other hiker piled into his old van and off we went. A short time later we were in Mammoth Lakes and in our room. And now we’re off for real food and rest.
There are only a few things we needed to do today. First was to get our small package from the post office. This was a little difficult. It took two trips. First Whisper and I went, but they could not find out package and I had not brought the tracking number. Back to the room we went, then I got there number and headed back. Their system showed that the package was there, but they could not find it. In the end, we discovered that it was filled under Mama Ravens name not mine.
Since breakfast my stomach had been hurting. As the morning went on, the pain became sharper. We went out to get sandwiches and I just felt like laying in bed. We returned to the room and I went to bed. Mid-afternoon Mama Raven went to the post office to mail home a few things and she purchased new shorts. Over the last four days the seat of her old ones had torn out. She sewed them up twice. While she was gone, I ate a little and started to feel better. Around 5:00 I was feeling well enough to walk to the store, with Mama Raven, to buy food for our next section. When we returned to the room we collected up the kids and went to dinner. We went to The Village. As we walked through the plaza there were people everywhere and a band was playing. As I lessened to the music I thought that this group was doing a great job of covering a Journey song, then I realized that it was Journey. We went a place called Burgers for dinner. There was way too much food. None of us could finish our plates. So far my stomach is feeling better so we will be hiking it tomorrow.