“I’m the meanest, roughest, toughest, hombre that’s ever crossed the Rio Grande – and I ain’t no namby-bamby.” Yosemite Sam
Yosemite. That word has captured my imagination ever since I could say the word. It spoke of an iconic place, a special place, a beautiful place and it was a long way away. Yosemite Sam only added to it’s wild and untamed allure. It took me 65 years to finally get there. The picture above is Doris and I crossing Donohue Pass into the Yosemite Wilderness.
This is the itinerary of our final leg of our JMT hike in Sept 2019. See previous posts for the first 2 sections. Continue reading Yosemite
“That’s what was great about him. He tried. Not many do.”
Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild
Perhaps some people think that a couple of 65 year old people hiking the John Muir Trail are out of their mind, and if not successful, would criticize all of the decisions that were made, just like many critics of Chris McCandless in the book Into the Wild.
We were those 65 year old people and while we think we make rational decisions and plan our way carefully you never know all the variables that can confront you when you are all alone in the wilderness.
The first leg of our journey (see previous post) didn’t seem like we were too far removed from civilization and we’ve done lot’s of 5 to 8 day backpack trips before. Plus, our son accompanied us on the first leg so it didn’t seem too out of the ordinary. Heading into the second and third leg of our journey was a lot more sobering … it seemed that we were in fact going “into the wild” … a longer stretch, more remote than anything we had ever done before.
Here’s our itinerary for the second leg.
Continue reading Into The Wild
“I don’t think we’ll ever be back.” Victor Doerksen (age 65), September 26, 2019
We completed our John Muir Trail hike on Sept 26, 2019 at Tuolumne Meadows. We had been on the trail for 19 hiking days and had finished the journey we had set out to accomplish. It all hits when you stop: muscles begin to seize up; you feel dirty, ugly, smelly and unkempt; tiredness gets the best of you; you just want out. We were done … we had done it … we were completely satisfied … we had been on a journey that very few people on earth get to make … we were both 65 … it’s not likely that we will ever do this trail again … there are lots of other places on earth to see.
Never Say Never: It’s now 6 months since we completed our hike and I think I would like to hike the JMT again … crazy eh? It would be especially fun to see it through another first timers eyes and experience it all over again.
In the meantime …. this post, and the next two, are mainly about our itinerary. I found it very helpful to read about other hikers experiences and plans and I studied their itineraries in detail as I planned our own. There are far fewer itinerary’s for those going south to north … so, maybe this will help you.
Our Basic Plan:
- South to North.
- Cottonwood Meadows, via Cottonwood Pass to Tuolumne Meadows.
- Mount Whitney was not in our plans.
- Sept 7, 2019 to Sept 26, 2019.
- 2 Resupply points.
Continue reading Never Say Never