Preparing to re-enter the Sierra wilderness

I’m on my fifth cup of coffee for the day and buzzing like frantic mosquito, trying to squeeze 10 days of food into my pack alongside my other necessities. It’s over 180 miles to South Lake Tahoe and it’s going to be my longest section by far flying solo!

I slept until 9am this morning and could barely get out of bed as I’d literally sunk into the mattress and was tangled in all the sheets and blankets. My first stop was the kitchen where my heart leapt out of my chest when I saw a fresh bag of bagels and the biggest tub of peanut butter on the planet! Not to mention a fresh pot of coffee sitting on the bench. I must have died and gone to trail heaven!

After breakfast it was time to open my resupply box and lay out my rations. I seem to have a perfect amount of dinners, breakfast is on the light side but thanks to my trail angel Chris, the Carnation Breakfast shakes should get me through. My granola was super heavy so I tried to lighten the load, feeding half of it to the carpet (sorry Megan), but the rest was spot on. Then I packaged half in my bear canister and half in my OP sack (which apparently hides the smell of food). Having heard from UB that a bear already ate all his food I’m going to be extra vigilant on protecting mine!


With all of the additional food I decided it was going to be too heavy to carry my tent, so I’ve picked up a bivvy sack instead and will ship the tent ahead to South Lake Tahoe when it arrives this afternoon. I’ll get my SPOT device back too and will soon be able to check in and update my ‘Where am I’ page again.

My pack weighs 45 pounds (20kg) and is bursting at the seams, giving Cheryl Strayed a real run for her money. I’ve also lost 10 pounds since my first weigh in on Day 1. I’m now 121 pounds (about 55 kgs), so it’s going to be slow moving for the first few days back on the trail.

Megan just got home so she’s going to take me to the post office and then back up to the ski resort where I’ll catch the shuttle back to Red’s Meadows. I’ve got re-entry nerves running in my belly, this happens every time I’m about to hit the trail again. The longer you spend in town the harder it is to get back out there. With three bagels, half a tub of peanut butter and five coffees in me, I’m confident I got this!


9 thoughts on “Preparing to re-enter the Sierra wilderness

  1. 10 days without bagels and coffee in the morning – nearly impossible. Who volunteered to be your pack bearer? How you crammed all that stuff in there is a miracle. Go safe and take the bears seriously on this stretch. Seems like they know hikers are coming. Keep in touch and keep alert.

  2. love watching this adventure!! when you get a chance to look up, take some pix of any weird cloud formations or trails… i produced/edited a documentary and now working another on the subject of geoengineering/chemtrails called “Why in the World are They Spraying?”:

  3. Don’t know if you’ll get this before you leave, but try to camp at the bear boxes. That way your food will be secure. Although I am not sure how many are between Red Meadows and all points north. Keep safe and pound out those miles, your eat your food faster and that pack will soon be much lighter! 🙂

    • There ain’t many boxes between here and Sth Lake Tahoe but I’ll be sure to eat as much food as possible to lighten the load! 🙂

  4. I’ve carried 38lbs a few times, I can’t even imagine 45lbs. Especially without a tent 😦 I hope you don’t have any dry stretches, at least until you drop a few of those food pounds. Best of luck and I hope to meet you when you get further north. I’ll be providing some trail love somewhere between Lassen & Etna.

    • Yeah it’s heavy!!!!! I can’t go more than 2 mph on flat 😦 Hope to see you up near Etna… I’ve missed trail magic since Walker Pass!

  5. Hi darling, hard to believe that all that food fits in your pack. 10 days….must be the longest part of the trail and also challenging to avoid any contact with bears. Watch out for shooting videos of cute baby bears. Prick your senses up and be alert. Have a safe trip and solo, you are brave. Thinking of you, love Mutti xxoo

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