Yosemite Falls?September 18 in the United States
Slept in this morning and got up around 7am. Today will be a light day so we take our time. We have breakfast and coffee. We fill water to the maximum in our packs; It's going to be a warm day and we will be in the sun for the whole ascent and most of the descent.
Today we choose to go to Yosemite falls and then head to Yosmite point. Ben had originally planned this as a longer trek as there is another peak we could have also added to this day. We will have a 14km hike instead of another 24km like yesterday. Should be easier...
We decide to take the SUV to Yosemite village and take the bus from there. It's free and the buses have hidden routes that cars cannot take. It would have been a long detour to the trailhead if we would not have taken the bus. We get a nice bus driver who provides information as we ride. At some point she talks about the Yosemite Falls and explains that the falls only flow from the melting snow from winter. This time of year it's dry and they call it the Yosemite Wall... Something that we did not see anywhere in looking at this trek. Oh well we had planned this trek, let's go up.
The mornings are cold, it went down to about 7°C last night. You gotta wear layers but once you start the ascent it does not take long for the layers to come off. The elevation gain for this trail is about 1300m, it was a lot harder than what I would have thought. At the start of the trek my body was already aching from the trek we did just yesterday. I decide to go down a couple of gears and decide to climb using the first gear. Slow but strong. I am again thankful for poles as they really help with the way my body is reacting this morning. I tell myself that this is a short day and we should make it to the top quickly.
The steep ascent is really tough and I feel noxious. I'm not sure if it's from the altitude our from something else. Also my sinuses were feeling pretty stuffed up, I wonder if I caught something. I hope I feel better soon. Going up on this trek is like climbing stairs non stop the whole way up. I keep telling myself to go slow but steady. We make it to the a couple nice views before we make it to the Yosemite point. At the top we see the distance that we had to make for our trek yesterday. It is quite the ride that we completed.
At the top we, as usual, have a bite to eat. I am still feeling weird but I am still able to go. They say that over 2km in altitude is when you can start feeling the effects of less oxygen. Maybe this is also the reason I'm not feeling great.
Going down we meet lots of people, more than yesterday. They also are more curious on how much longer it will take them to the top. We see lots of people who do not seem pepared for this hike. Some with only one small bottle of water, some in sandals. Sandals.... I'm wearing boots and so glad as you are walking on large rocks almost the whole trek. I guess some are okay with this type of shoe for hiking.
As we head down my right knee start to hurt a lot. I am almost not able to bend it. I try different things to ease the pain but it's brutal going down. I find a hop movement that I make instead of bending the knee. This "lighter easier" trek is not as light as I thought. I tough it out and continue going down. We continually see people going up with nothing but a bottle in their hands. We tell them how long it will take to make it to the top and some take our advice seriously and decide not to go to the top. I finished my 3.25 litres on this trek, the sun was really cooking us.
Finally we reach the bottom. My legs are happy. We take the bus back to the village. We stop at the store for a well deserved ice cream. As we go to pay for our stuff the employee tells us that the price is 47$. My mind does not see how our stuff could add up to this amount. We have a couple beers, Gatorade, the ice cream and nacho chips. I look at the bill and see a 23$ amount that I do not recognize. The guy somehow charged us for a T-shirt. We thankfully get a reimbursement and head out to enjoy our ice cream. End of trek. I really need to reajust the meaning of light and try to find something flat for tomorrow... I hope a good night of rest with help my knee.
Today I learned that I do not need to tie my boots extremely tight. My internal logic told me that having the boots tight would minimize movement to reduce blisters. However I would always feel hot spots, feel uncomfortable due to the boots being so tight and still get blisters. To my great surprise it was better to use less force, my feet were fine for the whole trek and almos no hot spots 😎.Read more