Day: Saturday, July 9th
Miles: 891 – 906.3
Lake Virginia Remote Camp – Mammoth Lakes Davidson St. Guesthouse
Waking to Levi’s morning perambulations, reminded me that for all my frustrations with my own tardiness lately, some people have much more difficulties than me in the morning. In the time it took me to eat, decamp and hit the road, I think Levi was thinking about what’s for breakfast. I guess we all have our time of the day, he was a lot fresher than me last night so the morning must be my own time to shine!
The trail immediately cut through an area of massive glacial rubble, before descending to the base of a creek valley with meadows and a water crossing. I met some others from the morning crew including MightyMouse and some southbound JMT hikers. The sun was out and I had a half-day on my plate, with around 15 miles to go to Reds Meadow Pack Station. Life was good and progress was going well when unexpectedly I was very excited to meet David and Nelson (whom I said goodbye to, back at Kearsarge Pass trail break-off quite a few days ago). We ended up rolling down the last 10 miles to Mammoth and caught up on events. We planned to all stay at the same place if possible. I had already agreed to stay with Blue, Srocket and Levi hopefully in a motel as we all had a hankering for a hot tub! Well maybe it was just me!
As we came closer to Reds Meadow, some small semblances of life returned, many day hikers now came against us on the trail, and cell phone coverage returned to my palm! Of course, due to my perilously battery level it did little for me but quicken my stride! The trail wound by a huge burn area of mature forest around the same time that Levi caught up to me, an area that burned 25 years ago I later learned – the massive trunks unlike anything we have witnessed so far.
Eventually arriving to Reds Meadow Pack station, I was back to car-parks, bus shuttles and the opportunity to buy whatever junk food my heart desires, in this case a can of Dr.Pepper, something I’ve suddenly built up quite the taste for! We met Srocket and Blue and found they had already secured a room at the Davidson St. Guesthouse/Hostel. Seemingly the motels were all very expensive given it was a weekend in this summer weekender town and the guesthouse accommodated us all in one room. We hopped on the bus down to town, and in no time were checked in, showering and making ourselves ready for reality! The rest of the evening involved food in abundance, some local brews and all of the things you crave for after 10 days on the trail – namely Ben and Jerrys!!