Friday June 8, 2001
We got to Yosemite
Yosemite on Friday at around 6:00pm and ate a wonderful meal close to Lower Yosemite Falls
Lower Yosemite Falls. Wow!
Stayed in Curry Village at the tent cabins with the paper-thin walls and didn't sleep all night due to some kid with a whooping cough and the Indians who went hiking at 4:30am. Most of the nine guys didn't sleep due to noise as well.
Saturday June 9, 2001
Started off on the trail
Started off on the trail at 8:00am with 5 liters of water, lots of dried apricots, some dried figs, some proshuto, various nuts and the infamous 'Fierce Melon' Gatorade. My backpack
backpack weighted quite a lot with all of that water.
We ate about every 90 minutes on the way up. The first section was the Misty Trail
Misty Trail that went straight up (mostly on granite stairs) to a huge waterfall
huge waterfall. Very wet, but stunning. We got to the top
got to the top and we were tired, but that was only a small section of the hike. Almost all of the way up is straight up through switch-backs (zig-zags up the mountain), so you end up going up 4500 feet
4500 feet over 7 miles.
Half way up
Half way up I got ill and started having severe stomach pains that forced me to stop every ten feet. Everyone eventually left me since I was dragging everyone down. I eventually 'purged' the pains an hour later but that is a whole other story in itself, that I'm sure you don't want to hear. It turns out that I had a small case of altitude sickness and that "Fierce Mellon" Gatorade REALLY didn't agree with me.
I went up by myself after that feeling better, but feeling tired and having my muscle cramp up every once in a while. Advil helped tremendously so I just kept going. I made it to the edge of the last section
edge of the last section, the cables
cables, feeling incredibly tired. I would not turn around nor quit and I forgot about pain, the return trip, and any injury that I may have done or will do to my body. I just wanted to get to the top. I got to the cables and almost lost it. The cables go up solid granite
cables go up solid granite to the top of Half-Dome. There are two cables about two feet apart and they are loosely anchored into the granite every six feet. The inclination goes from 45 degrees to almost 90 degrees (straight up). You basically go up by pulling yourself up with gloves on ... holding on to the cables for dear life since the drop is tremendous. Going up are hundreds of other people with you, since this is a very popular hike and there are quite a lot of (mostly) women who get scared shitless and freeze up. That means that you just hang there holding on to the cables waiting for the people in front of you to move. VERY SCARY, since this is after nearly 7 hours of hiking and your muscles are completely exhausted. 10 meters from the top, my muscles cramped up completely to the point where I couldn't move anything and I had to 'hang out' on a 30 degree flat spot for awhile. After 10 minutes, I said fuck it I don't care if my legs drop off and I physically forced myself to move my legs by pushing on them with my arms. I made it to the top
top where I found the rest of the guys and laid down for a much needed rest. I got a wondrous applause since everyone had written me off since I was felling so sick.
I was incredibly tired and I felt that I just went through a few hells. The views
views were unbelievable
unbelievable. There were tons of people up there all walking around
walking around or sleeping
sleeping or eating. Very joyous. I took two Pepto Bismols, ate some apricots and took off down.
Going down the cables was fun. We raced down going front wards, basically falling, just barely holding on to the cables and passing other people going down. The rest of the way was just painful on the knees, but enjoyable since we had all made it up and it was done. Ran out of water with 3 miles to go...couldn't eat anymore #$#%# apricots...got real bored with walking. Got to the camp, ate some pizza, had a shower, plugged up my ears with ear plugs and passed out.
Wow that was fun!
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Wow that was fun!