With the High Sierras done and a nice rest in Mammoth, the Low Sierras were waiting. The section straight out of Mammoth Lakes had seen a big wildfire just last year. While it was still very clear, new vegetation was already taking over the view. The trail passed Devils Postpile National Monument, where beams of rock seem to come out of the earth.
Thanks to a ride of trail angel Rick, I got to Kennedy Meadows without any problems. Kennedy Meadows is the portal to the Sierra Nevada, from there hikers head into the mountains. The last couple of weeks there has been a lot of talk between hikers about the snow situation up there, so we are fully prepared with ice axe and micro spikes before hiking out. We also carry a heavy bear canister, which is mandatory in most of the upcoming sections to keep bears from eating our food.
There I was, back in Wrightwood, the town where I got off trail five weeks earlier. A lot had changed in those weeks. Where the town was buzzing with hikers back in May, now I only see two other hikers. After 38 days, I finally got back on trail. I’ve been looking forward to this moment ever since I left. My friends had continued and are at the beginning, or in, the Sierra Nevada already. The first day on trail started great. In my previous month on trail, I had not seen one rattlesnake. Now just after five minutes one is on trail in front of me. Mount Baden Powell…
For the fourth time in three months I find myself at the check-in desk of KLM, twice more than planned. This time the destination is a bit closer, Lisbon, Portugal. I’ve been to Lisbon before and liked the city, the nature, the people and the weather, so it seemed like a perfect PCT side trip.