Yosemite: America's nature themed theme park
Mile 1017 / KM 1636
Mammoth Lakes to Tuolumne to Yosemite to Bridgepost
Song of my day: "I have to quit you" by The Solutions
I miss: A white T-Shirt
Loneliness is a scary thing at first. A month ago, a night alone in the woods was still freaking me out, whereas today it's something I really enjoy. These days I prefer hiking through the woods all by myself rather than in a big group. You see much more of the wildlife around you when you're alone and your mind wanders to memories ans places that you had completely forgotten about. Knowing that you can handle yourself and whatever obstacle comes along gives you a great feeling of confidence. But this is still the PCT so there are usually some people in within 2 miles from you and you tend to run into each other all day long which is a great thing. It really does start to feel like a little trail family out here. You have lunch together, watch each other fall into rivers and since everyone walkes about the same mileage a day you tend to end up on the same tent sites anyways.
I got a trail name a long time ago but I forgot to tell the world. It's; Quick Change. I tend to change my outfit a lot (especially my west haha) so Sarah (aka Signs) and Katie (aka Tape Boss) started calling me that whenever I put my pack down to make quick adjustments. Trail names are funny and weird at first, but they work and it's much easier to remember trail names than normal names when there's like 5 Brians hiking around.
One of the highlight of the past week was definitely Yosemite (and the Brewery in Mammoth Lakes), even though we got there on 4th of July weekend, which I guess isn't the best day to visit a National Park. I have been away from civilisation for 2 months though so I really didn't care about the hoards of tourists in the park. It made for great people watching! Crazy Squirrel and I rented bikes in the valley and hiked up Vernon Falls accompanied by about 1000 tourists. It was weird hiking with people knowing that they would return home or to their trailers after the hike and you just wouldn't. You would keep on hiking for another 3 months. On trail you can usually smell a day hiker from far away (I'm not kiddin') and when they pass you, you can smell their detergent. The good thing about touristy places is, that there's usually a hotel bar that serves fancy drinks and indeed there was. Squirrel and I ended up splurging at the Majestic and if I had had my pack with me that evening I would have totally gotten a hotel room there. I hadn't slept in a room all by myself for 2 months up until tonight. After I had made it over Sonora Pass I got a ride with Aaron. A bug and plant loving math teacher dressed in all beige. He drove me to Bridgeport, CA and pointed out every single tree we passed on the way here. Bridgeport is a cute little town way out of the way. The only room the Hotel had available was a room with 3 beds. Fine with me! I took it and I made sure I slept in all of them to get the most of the white sheets. You got to treat yourself every now and then :)
Another thing that kicked in this week is the famous Hiker Hunger. I'm serious! I could eat all day and I'd still feel hungry. While hiking, I burn around 6000 calories a day. There is no way in hell I could eat the same amount of calories out on the trail, since I have to carry all my food and food is super heavy. I guess the cool thing about hiking long distances is that you can literally eat whatever you want and not worry about weight for a second. If anything it's the other way around, and I never thought I would ever say this, but I am loosing weight too quickly. Since I'm on the trail which is about 2 months, I've lost 10 kilos and I still got 3 more months to go. I need to find more calorie dense food. Any suggestions? I might be the only person on planet earth that doesn't like Peanut Butter so you got to come up with something other than that.