Day 46 – Pacific Crest Trail (30+ miles)
Warning: I’ve had to backtrack because of the excess water!
Leaving camp, I followed the Lyell Creek into Tuolumne. This would conclude the end to the High Sierra.
I was kind of tired from the long day yesterday. I set myself a target of Tuolumne, 11 miles away to have a long break and a nap.
It is a beautiful section of trail, with numerous medows. However, at the moment each medow was flooded and the trail was constantly under water.
Arriving at Tuolumne, I found some shade for my power nap. It lasted for about 30 minutes and I felt great after.
I then headed on down the valley. The Creek that I was following turned into Tuolumne River. It was huge!
This is when I started to really notice how high the water level was. Tuolumne River had burst its bank and the trail that paralleled it was knee deep under water.
Getting through this ‘swamp’, I arrived at the first bridge crossing. The bridge had about 1in of water on it. Not bad at all.
I crossed the bridge fine, but the off ramp had swift mid thigh water to contend. It also had a nasty run out.
I went back the way I had come to look at my map and all the options I had. The trail crossed back to again a few miles down stream below the Tuolumne Falls. I could stay in this side of the river? I was worried about getting past the falls, there must be a reason that the trail changed sides.
I decided to cross.
I went back to the off ramp and got into the water. I started to cross and found it easy until halfway across I took a step and could not get traction on the smooth granite.
My heart started to pound. What do I do? I really did not like my chances if I fell.
Again, I tried – still no traction. I thought about my options. Should I go back? I decided to go forward off the ramp. I got traction on the side of the ramp and got the hell out of there.
I continued along the trail as my heart beat returned to normal. I still had another crossing to go. Hopefully it would be better!
Just before the second bridge I ran into a Thru Hiker. I was a bit supprised as I was not expecting to see anyone.