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#33179 - 09/10/13 11:07 AM TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29
Krishna Offline


Registered: 04/15/11
Posts: 101
Loc: Woodridge, IL, USA
Finished JMT this time in one shot mainly due to support from my family and lots of friends on this chat as well as on JMT@yahoogroups.com. Here is the schedule I originally planned and pretty much stuck to it. Planning and prep were the most important steps in this successful trip.

Training is mostly walking with my back pack (with 8days of food, the most I planned to carry) along with everything else including 1.5 liters of water. Luckily I found a 10 mile hiking trail around Argonne Labs near by and sincerely followed the 2 or 3 times a week. 4 days a week is fitness training (2 upper and 2 lower) and my training adviser focused a lot on balancing and strength training along with a 15 min stationary bike. I am a fair weather biker and whenever it allowed I enjoyed 25-30miles of road biking. All strength training is with 45lbs max.

My backpack weight varied between 28 lbs to 40 lbs atmost. So it was very comfortable from day 1. Here is the resupply and backpack weight. The food weight is around 1.5 to 2 lbs per day.

- HI to TM: 3days of food (TM picked up 4 days of food)
- TM to Reds: 4 days of food (Reds picked 5 days of food)
- Reds to Muir Trail Ranch: 5 days of food (MTR picked 8 days of food)
- MTR to Kearsarge: : 8 days of food (Kearsarge - Dave & Vikas brought 5 days of food)
- Kearsarge to WP: 5 days of food

My food planning did include one protein bar at 9 am and one protein and high cal bar for afternoon lunch. I followed the recommendation of 0.3gms of protein per pound of body weight (150lbs and hence around 40 gms per day). Actually it was a little less and I did loose some muscle mass at the end. Came down to 140 lbs currently. Started my exercise routing today and getting back to normalcy.

Actually at every section I was carrying one day extra food for just in case stuff.

I clearly indicated to my family that I have several exit options if the hike becomes a chore and not fun any more. Also promised to send 2 spot message every day, one around 9a and one at the end of the day. This got screwed up for Aug 23 thru 25th when there were issues with spot messages.

Here are the logistics: I rented a car in Burbank airport and started on 395 on 8/5. Dropped my first 5 day food pkg at WP Hostel at Lone Pine to be picked up by my friends around 8/23. Hostel is very generous and did not charge. Then drove to Mammoth, took the shuttle and dropped my second 5 day food pkg at Reds General store, $1/- per day charge till I pick up. I already mailed my 8day supply bucket to MTR and 4 day supply pkg to TM post ofice. So ended up at 3am at the permit office on 8/6 and there were 3 persons sleeping at the door! My goal was to get a HI to WP permit for 8/7. At 7:30a the Ranger told us that there are 3 permits open for 8/6 and I got the last one. So returned the rental at Oakhurst enterprise car rental and the girl dropped me off at HI! I gave her a generous tip and started on my hike around 2p.

Here is the actual traverse (mileage per JMT Atlas by Erik):

8/6: HI to Little Yosemite valley 4.3 miles
8/7: LYV to Clouds Rest by error then to Sunrise lakes camp: Long day: 11.7 m
8/8: Sunrise to TM: 5m Camp - TM Backpacker's CG
8/9: TM to Lyle Forks bridge: 12 m,
8/10: LFB to Ruby Lake: 10.9 m
8/11: Ruby Lake to Gladys Lake: 6.7 m
8/12: Gladys Lake to Reds Meadow: 5 m (rest on shuttle to Reds), camp: Reds Cabin
8/13: RM to Purple Lk, 12.8m
8/14: Purple Lk to Squaw Lk, 7.4 m
8/15: Squaw Lk to Quail meadows (Mono ck bridge): 6.9 miles
8/16: Mono ck bridge to Marie Lake: 11.5 miles
8/17: Marie Lake to Muir Trail Ranch: 8.6 m Stayed in cabin
8/18: MTR to Mc Clure Meadow: 11.4 m
8/19: McClure meadow to Muir Pass, 11 m, camped in Muir hut
8/20: Muir Pass to Grouse Meadow: 10.8 m
8/21: Grouse Meadow to Upper Palisades Lake: 9.6 m
8/22: Upper Palisades Lake to Lake Marjorie: 12.7 m
8/23: Lake Marjorie to Packer CG one mile below Baxter pass tr Jn:10.4 m
8/24: Packer CG to Kearsarge first lake: 12.8 m
8/25: Kearsarge first lake: 0 m, waiting for resupply. Dave, Vikas brought resupply around 3p and psyche back on JMT track
8/26: Kearsarge first lake to Bubbs ck east bend CG: 9.8 m
8/27: Bubbs ck east bend CG to Tyndel/Shepherd pass tr. Jn CG: 6.8 m
8/28: Tyndel ck CG to Guitar Lake: 10.3 m
8/29: Guitar Lake to MW and to WP: 14.8 m

The spot msgs that were actually delivered are:

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B7FjzdNfBHRaejJxaHVxMXJNTVU/edit?usp=sharing

The JMT trail profile:
http://images.summitpost.org/original/538195.jpg

My flickr uploaded photos:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/25552148@N02/9676398490/in/set-72157635387294300/

Made lots of friends on the way! Without realizing it, met long time chat friend, Salty at Woods Creek Bridge!

Each photo got a small description and the timings shown on the photo are CDT! Let me know if you have trouble with any of the 3 files I referred.

Lots of Love & Gratitude for this beautiful experience!
Krishna

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#33339 - 09/19/13 10:46 PM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: Krishna]
Bee Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1261
Loc: Northern California
Krishna,

Do I read correctly that you did this alone? I am always impressed by folks -- ladies & men, both -- who do the JMT alone, because you must beeee your own best buddy and reinforcement.

Do you do weekenders by yourself?

All of my training is done alone (hikes, bikes, skiing) so I am not totally unfamiliar with being alone, but the JMT is quite a commitment!
_________________________
The body betrays and the weather conspires, hopefully, not on the same day.

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#33343 - 09/20/13 06:48 AM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: Bee]
Fishmonger Offline


Registered: 01/07/10
Posts: 1030
Loc: Madison, WI
Originally Posted By: Bee

All of my training is done alone (hikes, bikes, skiing) so I am not totally unfamiliar with being alone, but the JMT is quite a commitment!


You won't be "alone" on the JMT:

When we hiked the trail this summer, one of the things to keep my mind from going numb was to count how many hikers we met on the trial. Heading south, with the main flow, we saw between 20 and 40 hikers each day, not counting people along the trail in camps or at public places like Reds. On Mt. Whitney alone last day we saw 220 people.

We had to go out of our way to find private camp sites, but still spent 7 out of 13 nights with other hikers camped very close to us. August at least is a time of year the JMT becomes a very busy place. Not a bad thing - most people you meet are like-minded and fun to be with. It's the handful of rednecks along the side trails we took that were less than fun to be around (insert mental image here: camo pants, huge campfire blazing pointlessly in the morning, large rambo knives in holsters, and an attitude that we somehow disturbed "their valley" and rangers are jerks and they didn't tell them about the fire rules anyway, so screw you).

October is the time for a JMT hike in solitude. If you can manage the resupply logistics without the regular sites, it's the time to be up there "alone"

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#33351 - 09/20/13 05:30 PM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: Fishmonger]
saltydog Offline


Registered: 02/03/11
Posts: 1559
Loc: Valley Ford CA!!!!
Funny thing, going solo. Seems to be a matter of degree.

I didn't count, but my impression is that there are about the same number of folks going solo as with groups. Even some of the groups were very loose associations of individuals spending much of the time solo on the trail, miles separating them from the rest of their group, and maybe camping together at night, maybe not. On the other hand, I rean across a couple of solos who joined up during the hike. A very few groups were very tight, always in direct contact, conversing as they hiked, but these were the minority. And even among the tightest groups, I saw almost no one except couples sharing tents, cooking, stoves etc.

I think this is the biggest cultural difference I noticed on this trip (August JMT solo) from when I began hiking at camp, in Scouts, with family, etc. a hundred or so years ago. When I took my family on the HST two years ago, I packed all meals for 5, took a big pot/cookset and we all ate family style, siblings shared tents, etc. Probably a vestige of when gear was much heavier, and there was a real economy in packing only one stove for five people, tents for 2-4 etc. Now everything is so light even the less efficient way of doing things is far lighter than the most efficient way years ago, and we can afford the luxury of more privacy, individual choice about meals, etc.

In the old style, if 8 or ten people were sitting around the fire at dinner time chances are one big pot was on the fire, and someone designated camp cook was doling out portions into Sierra cups all around. On this trip, when there were 10 or 12 of us sitting in a circle at the Tyndall Frog ponds, there were 10 or 12 stoves, 10 or 12 different concoctions brewing in 10 or 12 different titanium pans, Jet-Boils, mylar pouches, Sigg pots (me) or even just cold-mixed in ziploc bags.

Different strokes.
_________________________
Wherever you go, there you are.
SPOTMe!

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#33352 - 09/20/13 05:41 PM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: saltydog]
Bee Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1261
Loc: Northern California
Thanks for the birds-eye view on hitting the trail long-term solo. I have at times wanted to ask what the 'culture' for a solo trekker was (did he feel left out in the evenings, etc) I come from a very communal society, so the idea of solo trekking has been an alien notion to me. I applaud the folks to go forth solo even when there is no guarantee of trail buddy hook-ups.
_________________________
The body betrays and the weather conspires, hopefully, not on the same day.

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#33353 - 09/20/13 11:10 PM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: Bee]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7596
Loc: Fresno, CA
I'd like to read more from Krishna, too, on how many nights he camped alone, vs nights where there were others close by.

Do you think people are looking more for solitude, or do they just pick a site because it's the end of the day with water nearby? From Saltydog's description, it sounds like solitude isn't sought after by many.

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#33356 - 09/21/13 06:07 AM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: Bee]
Krishna Offline


Registered: 04/15/11
Posts: 101
Loc: Woodridge, IL, USA
Bee, Steve et al:

Thanks! yes, I did it solo but was never alone! out of 23 days of camping, I camped alone only 2 nights, one at Gladys Lake (it was too close to Reds - so many hikers passed by and waved to me). The second one was at the Packers camp one mile below Baxter pass in the Rey Lakes canyon. The rest of the days either I had the same camp mates (Ken and Aaron) or made brand new friends. Some showed where good camp sites are and some showed where to get water!

When one is old and slow they make quick friends I guess smile

Yes, I also trained solo and occasionally met people who are in training! Once I met this tall lady with a backpack near Herrick lake who stopped by and said "you are Krishna training for JMT! The Ranger told me!". She was training for her Norway trip. I was quite notorious on the trails in Chicago area, looks like!



Edited by Krishna (09/21/13 06:12 AM)
Edit Reason: spell check

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#33363 - 09/21/13 11:22 AM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: Steve C]
saltydog Offline


Registered: 02/03/11
Posts: 1559
Loc: Valley Ford CA!!!!
Originally Posted By: Steve C

Do you think people are looking more for solitude, or do they just pick a site because it's the end of the day with water nearby? From Saltydog's description, it sounds like solitude isn't sought after by many.


Another impression is the number of people you meet solo on the trail that you never see again, or do not see for days at a time. I was actually one of those, as I spent about half my nights not in sight or contact with anyone else. OF the other half, I was only actually with company, such as during meal time, once outside of resupply stops. That was at Tyndall Frog Ponds, where a bunch of us were conferring on strategy for getting over the Crest with a weather system moving in. I had complete solitude whenever I wanted it, and I think many others did too.

I had some amazing places all to myself: south shore of Garnet Lake, middle of Lake Edison, Upper Bear Creek Meadow, Evo Meadow, Little Pete Meadow, Palisade Lake, below Dollar Lake, 60 Lakes Basin Trail Jct, Center Basin Tr Jct, and virtual solitude at several others.

Also keep in mind that those seeking solitude are the ones you don't see.
_________________________
Wherever you go, there you are.
SPOTMe!

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#33365 - 09/21/13 03:44 PM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: saltydog]
Fishmonger Offline


Registered: 01/07/10
Posts: 1030
Loc: Madison, WI
Originally Posted By: saltydog


Another impression is the number of people you meet solo on the trail that you never see again, or do not see for days at a time.


how about do not see them for years at a time? I've now met the same person on three consecutive JMT hikes, each time about in the same area (first time Silver Pass in 2009, in 2010 at the water crossing just below Silver Pass, and this year at Bear Creek Crossing). Her name is Connie, and she's the grandmother of Sierra, who is quite well known for her PCT and JMT hikes at an early age. She also didn't hike the JMT between 2010 and 2013, so this is the same experience for her - each time she is on the trail, she runs into us grin

in 2008 and 2009 we ran into the same PCT hiker as well, once at Reds, the next year on top of Forester. It's a small world up there...

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#33367 - 09/21/13 04:25 PM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: Krishna]
lynn-a-roo Offline


Registered: 08/14/10
Posts: 627
Loc: OrangeCounty

Hey Krishna,

I love your name. May I ask if you are male or female, not that it matters but only because I am female and I don't think I would hike the JMT alone. It even amazes me when I see Steve C. do long hikes alone. Laura, Moose Tracks, also does a lot of hikes by herself, she amazes me too. Guess I'm a Scaredy Cat about going by myself without a friend.

I love the way you told us how much food you carried and how you shipped your food to different destinations to pick up. Someday I want to hike the JMT (not alone) and I will use your Trip Report as a guide.

I like how you told your family about all the trail exit options you had and how you gave them a spot message at scheduled times each day. You are a very responsible hiker, you did your homework first before you set off on your trek, you kept yourself safe while having fun and you didn't put anyone else's life in jeopardy because you didn't make any mistakes or take foolish risks.

When I hear or read the name Krishna I think of the Hare Krishna Temple in Laguna Beach, CA. I use to eat there once in a while, they serve a wonderful vegetarian buffet, the aroma in the temple is delightful, lots of curry and earth smells. I always think of the chant; Krishna, Krishna, Hare Hare.

Thank you for sharing. I have not checked out the links you posted yet, I hope there are pictures in them.

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#33382 - 09/22/13 09:53 AM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: lynn-a-roo]
Krishna Offline


Registered: 04/15/11
Posts: 101
Loc: Woodridge, IL, USA
Lynn:

Yes, Krishna is like Terry or Pat, sort of gender neutral ! Krishna in Sanskrit means black! Yes, I do know one of my sister's friends name is Krishna! Doug knows me, sort of, just like he knows a million other hikers who pass by him and feel happy to be part of his family for that moment! Sometimes I feel very envious of all of you, part of his circle, a circle with a background of water falls, bluish green lakes and these vast mountain-scapes, to which I plan and make my pilgrimage once a year and again feel part of his crowd, even just for an evening!

Some of the photos, I did share on the flickr. Please check them out!

Again thanks for the kind remembrances! Yes, I did visit the Laguna Beach temple and had fantastic egg plant curry, rice with sambar (a spicy soup they serve) and met a tall blond haired gentleman with blue California eyes, who saw me and my wife in a saree (obviously heard us talking in Telugu, our native south Indian language) and accosted us with "Bagunnara!!!" - a typical greeting in my language equivalent to how-are-you and started laughing at the surprise look on our faces!!! He was in peace corps and lived in South India and knows Telugu very well!!!

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#33384 - 09/22/13 10:41 AM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: Krishna]
Bee Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1261
Loc: Northern California
Now I am really sorry that I almost missed this thread altogether! I have a lot of experience with East Indian culture because one of my good friends is from Mumbai (knowing, of cours, that Mumbai is a world away from South India) I have many clothing items from India that I love to wear, as there is no culture that mixes beauty with function quite like East Indians.

The food! I could go on and on about how fantastic Indian food is in both nutrition and flavour. Were you able to take any interesting foods along on the trip, or did you stick with hiking basics?
_________________________
The body betrays and the weather conspires, hopefully, not on the same day.

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#33410 - 09/23/13 09:06 PM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: Bee]
Krishna Offline


Registered: 04/15/11
Posts: 101
Loc: Woodridge, IL, USA
Bee:
My daily food (roughly less than 2 lbs per day) consisted of the following:

5:30a: Oatmeal, granola, milk powder (premix in a ziploc bag) with boiling water
Coffee, milk powder, sugar (premix) with boiling water
9 a: One 160g protein wafer bar
10 a: one granola bar 160 g
12 noon: 450 g protein and high cal bar (for lunch)
3p: one granola bar 160 g

In between self made trail mix (lots of raisins, cashew, dried fruit, lots of dry pine apple pieces).

I bought a 4 plate dehydrator (from bed bath) last year and discovered Trader Joe ready made Indian curries and snacks, dried each dinner portion and mixed with dehydrated chapati (like thick tortilla) or pre-cooked & dried rice. I have lots of Indian soups (again dried into powder). So dinner is a lavish affair (always looked forward at the end of the day), one entrée and soup (mostly south Indian). For some dinners I carried spiced upma (ready made wheat flower, onions and other spices premixed - available in Indian grocery stores). So this time I was eating real good and did not loose any muscle at the end of 24 days. I lost about 12 pounds (153 to 141) and dont feel bad at all! So food planning was a 6 month affair and I did not take any item for the trail which I have not cooked and tasted at home. That helped a lot.


Edited by Krishna (09/23/13 09:07 PM)
Edit Reason: grammer

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#33412 - 09/23/13 09:42 PM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: Krishna]
Bee Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1261
Loc: Northern California
How very wise of you to "test" out each meal before taking it to the trail! I have seen many unhappy dinnertime folks because they hated their Mountain House entree.

I cannot live without my spices, so a simple rice and bean dish can take on a whole new character just by changing out the spices (usually Greek, Indian, or Cajun) This allows for many repeat ingredients with the outcome changed by spice selection.

Thank you for taking the time to discuss menu, as under-eating can add up to an anemic hike and deteriorated health on the trail.

I think that everyone loses weight on the JMT, as the constant movement is such a departure from daily lifestyle in North America (I used to walk 10mi a day living outside of the States, now I have to go on "walks" to keep up the metabolism)
_________________________
The body betrays and the weather conspires, hopefully, not on the same day.

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#33413 - 09/23/13 09:45 PM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: Krishna]
lynn-a-roo Offline


Registered: 08/14/10
Posts: 627
Loc: OrangeCounty
Hi Krishna, It sure helps to look at the photos to know who I'm talking with. You are a happy soul, your face shows how much you love adventure and hiking through nature. What made you choose the JMT? You live in a beautiful area of this great country yet you chose the JMT. And, you have eaten at the Laguna Beach Temple. Wow, both of these places are so far from Illinois.

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#33438 - 09/24/13 07:27 PM Re: TR: JMT Aug 6 - Aug 29 [Re: lynn-a-roo]
Krishna Offline


Registered: 04/15/11
Posts: 101
Loc: Woodridge, IL, USA
Hi Lynn:

Why did I choose JMT? Lots of reasons!
- Sierras are the second best mountains in the world! First come Himalayas though! I like the people I meet on these hikes & chats, as though I have known them already!
- Been hiking in Sierras from the past 20 yrs and love the mountains. I keep one goal each year and plan, prepare and train for it. It helps my mind, body and soul.
- The 210 "was" a simple multiple of my age! Remember Laura did a TM to Reds one day hike for her birthday?

Yes, as you said Chicago is a beautiful place and the best I like here are the four seasons! They are so clear, its almost like a line drawn between yesterday and today! It was summer and today its fall! Incidentally, graduated in the land of eternal spring (HI), taught in the land of winter (AK), and worked in CA, 30 yrs back and hence love Chicago! To be interested in changing seasons is far better than to be hopelessly in love with spring!

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