The Hike to Yosemite Falls
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Where: Starting from a trail head () off of Rt. 120, and finishing at the top of Yosemite falls ().
When: This is day one of the trek.  Monday, August 7, 2006
Who: The Red Team, of course!

After months of planning, the day was upon us for the big hike through Yosemite.  We'd spent the morning and day prior getting ready, with John Koslosky leading the way at every level, from helping us load the back-packs properly to setting the pace of the hiking.

We were able to bring a GPS along with us, and it did it's best to record the path we took every step of the way.  If you have Google Earth on your system, you can download this file () to see the full trek.  There are some spots where it was hard to get a signal, but you'll get the general idea.

LCWC sent along one of their counselors to join us, but it turned out that this was the first time he'd done this particular route as well.  The more, the merrier.

It all started easily enough.  The many preparatory hikes we'd done as a troop in the preceding months paid off in spades.  I'd hate to think what would have happened if we'd not gotten in shape.

Early parts of the hike took us through the woods and over a small stream.  No problem.  Following the trail there was pretty straight forward.  Later on though, there were long stretches where we'd be over bare rock.  This made things a bit more interesting.

There would be the occasional cairn to help guide us, but even they would be tricky to spot.  Despite maps and compasses and GPS, we ended up off the trail.

Some may argue this point, but we were not lost!  We knew exactly where we were and where we needed to be.  We just had no idea where the trail was. 

So, we improvised.  We could see the stream we wanted from our vantage point (the same stream that later cascades over the edge of Yosemite Falls).  After a little wrestling with our options and attempts to find the best path, we went over the edge of a pretty steep area, passing things from man to man and using ropes as necessary to get down to the stream below. ()

If anything, this helped prove our skills and teamwork better than if we'd stayed on the trail.

We took the opportunity of shade and a nice fishing spot (no bites) to rest a bit before marching forward.  We'd only gone about 4 miles from the trailhead, but the extra effort of managing the cliff made it so we didn't feel guilty about relaxing a bit.

All we had to do now was follow the creek (river?), which was pretty easy.  We eventually came across a long stretch of eroded rock that the water flowed through.  This gave us our second chance of the day to relax, swim, and fish (still no bites).  ()

We made it.
We were at the top of
Yosemite Falls!


Bare rock never felt so good, as it did when resting here.

The photo on the left is a nice zoom back into Yosemite village, where we were only a couple days prior, and now was a few thousand feet below us.

Time to call it a day ()

After drinking our fill of the view from the top of Yosemite Falls, it was time to scout for a place to spend the night and cook up a meal.  It was the first time many of us had ever used this type of camp stove before, and was also the first time trying some of the dehydrated food they supplied us with.

The general consensus was that it tasted great, but there wasn't nearly enough.  But then again, would we have wanted to carry an extra few pounds of food on our backs?  Probably not.

Something again worth noticing is our change of clothing as the day wore on.  We started with shorts and t-shirts, but as the sun set (and fatigue settled in) we got cold.  Notice the wool hats, sweatshirts, and gloves!