Trailmelancholy

Three days ago I suffered from an acute case of trailmelancholy and trailfamily longing. It just came over me when I started preparing my PCT journal, drawing the route of the PCT on to the cover page. I had done the same thing with my JMT journal two years ago.
So three days ago I took out my JMT journal to compare and then…. BAMN… DAMN…I made a mistake. I opened my journal and I started reading. From beginning to end. I was laughing and fighting back my tears at the same time.
I came to the last page of my journal and found an entry I couldn’t recall publishing here on my blog. First I didn’t understand why I hadn’t published it, but then I read it through and I understood. By the time I published my last traildays here on my blog it was december 2013. 3 months after finishing my JMT thruhike. I was still hurting like shit. Missing my people like shit. And trying to build a new life here in Germany.
We’re one year later now. Time o time it doesn’t heal but it makes the feelings less intense.
So this was my last entry in my JMT journal:

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JMT Journaling

During my JMT Thru-hike I did a bit of water colors in my journal… Nothing fancy, but just for the fun of it. I am no Kolby Kirk (check his journals, he is absolutely AMAZING!), that’s for sure… But I enjoyed painting so much (even when I’m not too good at it… who cares ;c) when I had a longer lunchbreak or I got to camp early… That wasn’t all too often, but still…. When I’m hiking the PCT I’m definitely taking my mini water color set along!

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DAY 25: Sunrise on MOUNT WHITNEY!!!

Monday 16th September 2013: Guitar Lake – Mount Whitney – Trail Crest – Whitney Portal

The last day on trail… NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!! My heart is crying and big tears drip down from my cheeks before I am ready to get out of my sleeping bag. I don’t want this to end. This is perfect. This is what life should be ALL the time!!!
I force myself to get up shortly after Joe’s alarm plays “The final countdown”… It’s a bittersweet wake-up call at midnight. We have breakfast and coffee in the dark, though isn’t all that dark as the moon is almost full and lightens Mount Whitney and the mountains and rocks around it. OMG! In a few hours I’ll be up there!!!
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Day 24: Playing my ukulele at Guitar Lake :c)

Sunday 15th September 2013: Tyndall Frog Ponds – Bighorn Plateau – Crabtree Meadow – Guitar Lake

Today should have been an easy day. Only 10 miles, no passes… Still we had to descend and climb quite a bit. Soon after we left camp, we reached the Bighorn Plateau, which I’ve been curious for since I hit the trail. Kind of a surreal landscape!!! Descending through a pine forest (and again a forest that had a totally diferent “character” than the forests I crossed before) we ate lunch shortely before the crabtree junction…. After that we only had a few miles to go but DAMN that felt hard. As I was passing Timberline Lake I was like: “Now where is that fuckin’ guitar????” Haha! Yet we saw Mount Whitney rising up in front of us!!!

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Day 23: Dance on Forester Pass!!! My first 4000m pass!!! YEAH!

Saturday 14th September 2013: Campsite next to Bubbs Creek (close to Center Peak) – Forester Pass – Tyndall Frog Ponds

Oh Fiiiiiinally… I slept WELL! Thank you lord! Left camp at 8am. Slow but steady. 3,5h to Forester. What a smooth and breathtaking climb! Stairway to heaven! I was like “AUS’M HÄUSCHEN” when I hit the pass. MY FIRST 4000M PASS! So exciting! Took a hell lot of pics and I DANCED ON FORESTER while the boys were singing that silly milkshake song HAHAHA! Party for my first 4000m!

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Day 22: TRAIL MAGIC on friday the 13th!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday 13th!!!! (from now on that’s a LUCKY day) September 2013: Dollar Lake – Rae Lakes – Glen Pass – Bubbs Creek (close to Center Peak)

Jee I slept so bad I had a hard time leaving camp this morning. Still I managed to do some laundry and hit the trail by 8:15am. At breakfast we saw a bunch of deer hanging around camp. Maybe they made the noises I so freaked out about at night. Hm that mountain lion night might have caused a bit of a trauma I’m afraid…

http://walkingwomad.blogspot.de/2013/09/day-2-and-3-half-dome-and-mountain-lion.html
Anyway I left camp together with Stephan and Tilt, though hiked a bit on my own for the first few miles. Oh I love those first few hours of hiking in the morning where the air isn’t too hot yet and my legs and mind are fresh and happy.

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Day 21: The long way down from Pinchot Pass

Thursday 12th September 2013: Marjorie Lake – Pinchot Pass – Dollar Lake

Left early at 7:30am. Enjoyed the climb up to Pinchot Pass. Played the ukulele on top. Long long long way down. Meeting Pat with his Z-Packs Backpack (told me he gave the boys a cliff bar for me… hahaha they met him before and told him they have a skinny person in their group who could use some extra calories…. eh yeah… that’d be me…. Ain’t that sweet?) BEAUTIFUL RED ROCKMOUNTAIN (no idea how to describe it) along the trail. Hard afternoon down a valley which gave my eyes a break from the majesty and beauty of the mountains we saw before.

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Day 20: Kiss the ground girl! Kiss the ground!

Wednesday 11th September 2013: Upper Pallisade Lake – Mather Pass – Marjorie Lake

Fiiiinally I had a good nights sleep and woke up early to hit Mather Pass. What a great and amazing climb. Beautiful views of the Pallisade Lakes. I did feel that I was getting up high. Wow the hightest my own feet ever took me. THANK YOU FEET! 3688m! And I’m gonna break that record again tomorrow. Wuhuuu!
Up on Mather Pass we met a woman doing the High Sierra Route on her own, being  a professional backcountry photographer! Pretty cool!
The switchbakcs down were nice and smooth… Though somehow the ground wanted to kiss me! As I was making a little video I twisted my ankle which made me tumble… AND O YEAH!

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Day 19: A tortuce on the golden staircase

Tuesday 10th September 2013: Middle Fork – Golden Staircase – Upper Palisade Lake

Though I didn’t sleep too much tonight, my knee felt better and after a great breakfast (have to remember: I like MH Granola with blueberries) We left camp at 8am. First going gently uphill through a beautiful green forest with ferns. The sun became hot very quickly and in the heath of the day we started climbing the golden staircase.
DAMN THAT WAS GREAT! I kinda loved that climb. SLOW BUT STEADY LIKE A TORTUCE. The views were just stunning, breathtaking, amazing.

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Day 18: Beauty overload!

Monday 9th September 2013: Wanda Lake – Muir Pass – Le Conte Canyon

Bad night’s sleep. Rain. Early wake up. Sunrise over Wanda Lake. 2 Coffees. Early leave. 1 hour to Muir Hut. 30 minutes Muir Hut loneliness. Ukulele playing on the doorsteps. HELEN LAKE. Loooong way down. Dizzy. Tired. Need water. Toooo much nature beauty to take in. Give me a break nature. Give me a boring forest. NOT. Aua my heart. GREATNESS OF NATURE! HUMBLE ME. Heart spilling over. Impressive huge rocky mountains, waterfalls, meadows. Me. Dead. Tired. Stumbling down 4000 feet. Knee hurt. Tired. OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOH ROCK MONSTER!!!!!! Energy boost. Funny family pics. 5 more miles to go. WHAT???? O damn. Look down. No. Look those mountains. Sun hiding behind. Rainclouds can’t get over. Dust thrown up. Mystical atmosphere. Knee Auaaaaa… How much longer? Fight! I wanted to do this. Keep going. Thank you trees for the shade. Sooo much beauty! Finally! Camp! Food! Eat! Pee! Poo! Bed! GRATEFUL!!!!

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