Nov 8, 2011 at 1:37 pm #1281706
Companion forum thread to:Nov 8, 2011 at 2:02 pm #1799823
@cameronLocale: Idaho Falls
Absulutely awesome article Balls! Very inspiring!
My favorite lines
"I'm not flip flopping Dad!" Sounds like she should run for office next.. just kidding. Did she even know the double meaning there when she said that?
"two starburst injuries"
Love how you captured the "family humor" of fun things kids say.Nov 8, 2011 at 4:19 pm #1799861
@hikinggrannyLocale: Gateway to Columbia River Gorge
I really enjoyed the article even though I followed your journal!
Just for the record–I was privileged to meet these two intrepid hikers at the end of their journey. They are both wonderful people!Nov 9, 2011 at 9:33 am #1800054
I have enjoyed your articles here as well as your journal. I also enjoyed meeting up with you just north of Olallie Resort in Oregon.Nov 9, 2011 at 9:42 am #1800056
@basecampboundLocale: Foothills of San Gabriel Mtns.
Really appreciate the posts. Very good read. Sunshine, because of her adventure, will be one young lady who will be prepared for anything in life!Nov 9, 2011 at 10:16 am #1800072
Mountain Education trains hikers to safely anticipate and deal with all these extremes of hiking. We have been doing this for PCT/CDT hikers and general wilderness users since 1982 and have read many trail journals about thier joys and trials. This account is one of the best we have ever read!
For all who desire to enter the high country before the snowpack melts, what you read and saw, here, is what you will need to prepare for. This is typical of the conditions at that time of year and shows what we like to call, "The Reality of the Trail." It is not easy. You will eat twice the usual amount of food while only covering half your desired trail miles per day. The creeks are bad. The climbs can be dangerous. The glissades are glorious, but you've got to know what you're doing.
Learning what these conditions are really like the year before you do the trail will show you what to prepare for, what skills you need to learn to get through it, and help keep you safe and happy once you start your dream hike. Take it seriously. We teach in the snow from January through July and these videos included in this article show conditions and skills typical of what you will have to do on a daily basis on the PCT north of Kennedy Meadows and all the way to Donner Pass (after winters like the last two…and this one coming up).
It doesn't matter where you get your experience and skills practice, just get it! Local Junior Colleges, Community Colleges, State Colleges, Universities, and Mountain Shops may have courses which will teach you how to do the requisite skills to be safe. The Sierra has a stable, spring snowpack that is consolidated and firm, especially in the morning, but it has its dangers like post-holing, slip-and-falls, steep traverses, tree navigation, and much more. From our perspective, teaching along the PCT from Tahoe south, you should get a taste of these spring conditions in the high sierra along the John Muir/Pacific Crest Trails the year before your thru hike so you will know how to prepare for it.
Great documentation, guys! Now, post to the pct-l to help others know what you had to do and what the next class of thrus needs to prepare for. See you at the Kickoff!Nov 9, 2011 at 1:50 pm #1800144
What a wonderful account ! Thanks so much for sharing. God bless you both. Charlie.Nov 9, 2011 at 2:35 pm #1800153
Thanks for sharing, it was enjoyable read. One note though, The California/Oregon border is actually a state line not a border. No Fences or Guards.Nov 9, 2011 at 7:57 pm #1800269
Enjoyed the read. And reading and seeing Wired. I followed her journal and it was awesome.
Balls and Sunshine. Great going. Can't wait to start reading about your 2012 journey.Nov 9, 2011 at 10:02 pm #1800313
Skippy would be so proud of you guys!Nov 9, 2011 at 10:02 pm #1800314
Seriously, you guys are amazing, and I'm so proud to have shared the trail with you this summer :) Bunches of sweet memories tied in with your entire family.Nov 12, 2011 at 8:44 am #1801029
@ktennessLocale: Bay Area
Great story, great photos!Nov 12, 2011 at 9:07 pm #1801200
I was impressed by your article, I found it had a good balance of quantitative information such what gear you used, the miles that you hiked each day, and information about the Sierra; and the qualitative information too, such as the people that you met on the trail, and the events that transpired. The photos are interesting too, I'm sure that Skippy is looking down on us right now with a grin on its face.
-JesseNov 13, 2011 at 7:38 am #1801241
drowning in spamMember
I love the article. I've been hoping to see this for a while. I met these two a few times. One of those times was at a trail angel's house next to the trail. There were lots of people there, but Sunshine was the only one with the energy to get up and play horseshoes. Everyone else either sat the whole time or getting up to use the bathroom or get water.Nov 15, 2011 at 12:18 pm #1802064
@cuzzettjLocale: NorCal - South Bay
I am going to show this to my daughter tonight. I would love to do this with my daughter. Your daughter is so skilled now! It is amazing. I know those peaks would have scared me some, especially with all of the snow. One more word… WOW!Nov 15, 2011 at 1:44 pm #1802096
@fartherLocale: State of Jefferson
Wow, what a great story. I had the privilage of hiking the AT in '98 with my youngest daugher who was 19 at the time. You will alway cherish the memory.Nov 15, 2011 at 6:00 pm #1802192
What a great story. You are an inspiration on how to raise a family and enjoy life. Thanks for sharing.Dec 9, 2011 at 9:02 pm #1810614
@marti124Locale: Moderator-JohnMuirTrail Yahoo Group
Fantastic journal and photography! Can you please provide the dates you did the JMT portion of the hike?
p.s. I see the link to your Journal, I see the dates are June 16-July 6, 2011.Apr 15, 2012 at 5:07 pm #1867555
I was out in the Sierra in 2010 and 2011… I can relate to your good memories there. I was more concerned by the countless stream crossings than all of the snow. There were several fatalities (mostly in Yosemite) when folks underestimated the currents. I'm thinking about a safety line with a grab-hook next time I go out there under the same conditions.
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