Though I initially doubted the wisdom of adding 4 non-trail miles to my day I did go to visit the Blayney Hot Springs just across the San Joaquin River from the Muir Trail Ranch, and it did wonders for my feet. Fording the river was a simple, but freezing cold affair, then follow the path and the barbed-wire fence out into the middle of a meadow to a hole full of warm water. My feet really did feel good so I tackled the big climb of the day, up to Selden Pass, without trouble and arrived in time to see Wounded Face before he hobbled down the north side. Poor guy has to get to VVR for a rest and some foot care.
On the way down Lucky Joe and I had to cross the other much-hyped creek of the Sierras, Bear Creek. The water was swift but with my shorts rolled up they hardly got wet. We had more trouble with insects than water. The mosquitoes were swarming like nothing I’ve seen before so it was a rush to put shoes and socks back on before heading to the hills. We actually managed to run short on water today, not an easy task in these stream-laden hills. But there wasn’t one where the data book said so we had to do 3 more miles than we expected and consequently we’ve racked up 28 miles today, a big number for this part of the trail and great for how bad my feet were last night.
P.S. I think I spent too long without a shirt yesterday, my shoulders are a little crispy. No fun when you have to lug a backpack all day.
More photos of this day’s journey can be found at Muir Pass to Reds MeadowDistance today: 24.1 miles. Total distance: 875 miles