Ferdinand, Maid of Mist, and 3B+FT
Beginning Elevation = 5,550
Ending Elevation = 4,450
Elevation Range = 3,200 – 6,000
Weather: Washington foggy cloud, turned mostly sunny with a high of 75°F
When I awoke early in the morning having to use the big green bathroom, I discovered that we’d been enveloped in a sea of clouds. It was lightly misting rain too. Upon learning of this, I retreated back into the warmth of my sleeping bag deciding that an early start was not in the cards for me today. The others must have been thinking the same thing because nobody was stirring. I would’ve known too if that was the case, our tents were super close to each other.
I ended up eventually making my oatmeal and coffee inside my tent vestibule. Here’s sleepy Steve, not very excited about the weather outside…
And luckily, the rain stopped. When we finally did pack up, the clouds were still pretty thick though. TW and I were the first to hit the trail at 8:00am. Calzone was next and then Cheer, both close behind. For the first 45 minutes we had a sliver of viewage between a top thick looking layer of clouds above and one down below. The trail went up right away and we were able to look back at our campsite where Cheer was finishing packing up.
It was all very mystical feeling. Clouds wisping Around the mountains and such.
Our camp last night was set up on a saddle in the middle of a climb up to a high point. We had less than a mile to get up there this morning and as we approached, we came across another northbound hiker stopping to eat some berries. As I passed, we recognized eachother. It was Jan from the Czech aka Skyrider. TW went ahead while I chatted with him a bit. I think the last time I’d seen him was the day we decided we were going to pull out of the Sierra. He’d ended up continuing through and made it! He must have been cruising because here we were together and I’d skipped 500 miles!
Very soon after I left Skyrider, I was walking down a section of loose rock, my head down focusing on my footsteps, and when I glanced up my gaze met that of a mountain goat staring me down! I didn’t really even have time to react though. He was maybe 15 feet away right on the trail and then jumped down, went by me, and then jumped back on. I then watched as he continued up the trail to where Skyrider was and after passing him by watched as he met Calzone too. It was funny because both of them saw the goat coming and weren’t sure what to do and both started talking to it.
Here’s Ferdinand the goat, so named by Cheer, who also got to experience the head to head goat encounter…
Soon after our goat run in, Calzone caught up, and the clouds swallowed us up whole. It was still pretty neat despite not being able to see what I’m sure would be an amazing view looking out.
I finally captured one of these little dudes on camera too…I think they’re called Pika’s and they love these loose rocky slopes.
Mr. Skyrider ended up passing me by probably not to be seen again by us. But our crew of four gathered together at the point where the trail popped over a ridge into the non cloud covered area. It offered up a nice view.
From here, we went down again. I found the best blueberries yet, big juicy ones! Delicious.
TW and I had another tea time as well, whereas the girls continued on ahead. I am a big fan of the tea breaks and of the lemon ginger variety he’s been sharing with me. After our super health power drink, we pressed onward and soon made our way to the truly amazing spectacle of looking down upon Spectacle Lake!
And then we started going down again, switch-backing until we found Delate Creek. It was beautiful and there was mist in the air, and thus we filmed our final episode of the Maid of the Mist series. And lucky for you, here is an early release, exclusive only to the Stevie Wonder Unexpected Journey viewers, all 7 total episodes in chronological order of the soon to be viral, Maid of the Mist mini documentary series!
Yep folks, we’re waiting for our call from. Netflix for our official invite to collaborate. But we’re not stopping now, get ready for more to come 😉
Until we get that call, we decided to hike on…for another three miles or so…until we stopped for our late lunch break at a lovely location that TW found for us. We did some serious spreading out of our tents and such to dry in the sun.
It was later in the day than normal for our lunch and we had made it about half way to our intended goal, which was about 10 miles further and a big uphill section still to go. Just so dang pretty though!
And then, after a mile past our lunch spot, we got our second on-trail passerby meeting with our dear friends 3 Bean and Foxtail!
Hooray! Good times were had by all. Unfortunately another short visit, but apparently there’s hope that we’ll meet again going opposite directions through the Sierra!
The rest of the evening was a long haul into camp. Each of us went at our own speeds. Here’s some photos from the evening hike.
Had to fill up with some froggy water….
We got in to camp late and there were limited spots. TW and I had gotten there first and so went a little ahead (0.4 miles) of Cheer and Calzone. Apparently we had a great view, but it was too dark to see it by the time we’d set up. As TW AND I were chatting back and forth inside our tents, we heard from up above on the mountain, surprisingly close, someone singing, “Do you want to build a snowman?”. Apparently, the girls were closer than we thought. This jingle from Frozen has somewhat become our method of greeting to one another for some reason.
Rush – 2112
Yellowcard – Ocean Avenue
Hyperion by Dan Simmons (started today, recommended by TW)