Ml. 681 – 702: 21ml / 33,8km
Chimney creek campground till Kennedy Meadows
The alarm rings at 5 am. I’m awake already. Here we go again. Time to beat the heat and rock the trail. We leave camp around 6, wave goodbye to Dunedin, and by the time it’s 9 we’re done with the climb of the day. Bammm. It’s all downhill from here. We sit on a treelog to eat a clifbar and there is that noise that I love but still suprises me, like “What the hell was that?”
It sounds like a huuuge bumblebee and it vibrates in my ear. A tiny tiny grey wonderful hummingbird comes to sit on an armlength distance from us on a branch. He looks at us, turns hiis little head, checking us out from top to toe. He is sooo curious. He stays there for like half a minute. Half a minute of wonder and magic!!! Hummingbird magic!
We hike 7 miles down (I can see Sierra now, omg!!!!), it’s getting hot, so damn hot. No wonder this whole area burned down. It’s too hot. My head will explode at some point. I am sure. Thank god there are a few patches where the trees are still standing. Time for lunch in the heavenly shade. My foodbag is getting empty. The cool thing is my pack is lighter, the not so cool thing is all the good food is gone. I have to eat leftovers, boring leftovers. At least I have mayo to put on top.
4 miles till South Fork River. It’s scorching hot. 1,5 miles before the river we find Urs sitting at the side of the trail, an empty nalgene bottle in his hands. He ran outta water and he looks kinda done. We share our water with him, enough to make sure he makes it to the river. Some says it’s each to its own out here, but in a situation like that we’d also be happy to get help. What goes around comes around. Right?!
I hardly can believe my eyes when I indeed see a river flowing through the landscape. We haven’t seen a river like that in 700 miles. We find our way down, put our feet in, it’s heaven. Before leaving I dip in my shirt but after only 10 minutes of hiking it’s dry again! Wtf?!?
It’s 3 pm. 4,8 miles till the Kennedy Meadows General store. Can we make it till closing time? Hell yes, let’s go for it!!! It’s hot, I’m tired, my body hurts but the thought of icecream, coke, chips and candy keep me going. Go go go. Don’t care about the heat. Just go! We reach the road and start walking towards the store. A truck stops and lets us hop in the back. Awesome. It’s been since my travel through Guatemala that I got a ride in the back of a truck.
We get dropped off at the store, everyone is there. Ninja and her friends, Snowhite and Wallstreet, Aquanaut and Little Bear. They all applaud. That’s tradition here. When new hikers arrive, everyone applauds. Hell yeaaaah I made it to Kennedy Meadows. The Sierra the sierra the sierra. My beloved Sierra, I AM BACK!!!! We arrive at happy hour and get free food. O boy, life is good. We’re happy, have full bellies, good company and a zero day awaiting us. Yes, life is good.
Day 40: Ml. 700!!! O god it’s hot!!!
Ml. 681 – 702: 21ml / 33,8km