There is a triumphant feeling to reaching a goal point, especially when it has taken several days, especially when you’ve walked, carrying 30 pounds on your back to get there. This leg of our backpacking trip was relatively easy, and we planned in several options for the rest of the day that could be challenging or more leisurely. When we reached Glacier point just after lunch time, we could have done little walking for the rest of the day. We could have walked a nice distance to the valley, but taken our time. But, we were ready to set new goals. We wanted a bed.
To explain why we did what we did would be complicated and boring, so just understand that to sleep in a bed that night, we needed to catch a bus that we could only catch at 3:30. To do this, we had to leave Glacier Point, where we had just marched in victoriously and begin a new adventure. We’d take the 4 mile trail to the valley, then hike 2 more miles to the bus stop. So, we took off down a trail that dropped about 1000 feet every mile in hopes that we could find our way to the bus before it left us, stranding us in the valley for another night sleeping on the ground.
We saw fantastic views and made our legs fantastically sore. Booking it downhill for 4 solid miles with 30 pound packs is painful in a different way from climbing, but you can be sure it’s still very painful. We wanted to sleep in a bed that night, because our bodies were sore from the trip. To accomplish this, we put our bodies through even more pain, hiking 6 miles in about an hour and a half. Our legs did as they were asked to do, but the next day, they would declare, “No More!”
Still, on this day our eyes were rewarded for our bodies’ work. The soreness is only a memory now that comes up when I want to impress people. The way it changed me is something I remember much more deeply.
Here is part 4:
Next is the final installment of our 5 part series. We see Sequoias and go to Lake Tahoe.