A Backpacking Trip

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Foot SoakFoot Patch

Foot Repair in the High Sierras.



This is like being subjected to boring vacation slides except that you also have to mix your own drinks.



The trail head in Sequoia National Park where my hike began. There is sort of a little "town" here, Mineral King, CA, reached by about fifty miles of winding dirt road.

Trailhead

Looking East to the Great Western Divide behind me. My elevation here is about 7800 feet. Sawtooth Peak, in the background, scrapes the sky at 12,343 feet.



Most of the biggest Sequoia trees in this particular area were logged long ago- for vineyard trellises of all things. There are quite a few young "saplings" like this one about however.

Sequoia Sapling



The view from my base camp at Hockett Meadow. From here I set out on day hikes without having to lug my whole pack around- once my food was secured from bears!

Meadow

In the evenings, as I ate dinner, coyote pups played in the meadow. Their yipping cries echoed from the surrounding mountains seemingly forever.

DinnerRanger Lorenzo

The only other human I saw on the trip was Ranger Lorenzo who was stationed here. I ran into him on his day off which is why he was out of uniform.



The highest altitude I reached was 9,278 feet on the summit of Cahoon’s Rock. I had hoped to climb higher than 10,000 feet but as an East Coast kid (read sea slug) I was unprepared for the physiological impact of altitude.

Altitude

This view is looking West into the Central Valley. In addition to the usual smog there was a pretty good wild fire going on in a valley to the North. There had been a lot of dry lightning setting off fires during the previous week.



These skinny red Pinedrops (Pyrolaceae Pterospora andromedea Nutt.) are a bizarre California native plant. They have no leaves and probably no chlorophyll either since they do not engage in photosynthesis.

Pinedrops

They could be found readily growing under the trees around Evelyn Lake.

Lake

But for some reason I lost all interest in exotic plants here.

Swimmin’

Perhaps I hoped to become another happy trout.


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