Hi everyone! This post is part of my series the Mt. Whitney chronicles, which is comprised of journal entries from when I climbed Mt. Whitney, the tallest mountain in the contiguous United States, ten years ago. If you missed the earlier post in the series, you can read them here.
Sunday, June 22, 2003
We went on an eight-mile hike today, our longest thus far. And — guess what? — I actually felt pretty good! There was a lot of steep uphill, and I was breathing hard, but I was able to keep going at a fairly fast pace and my legs weren’t as sore as they usually are. I can feel myself getting stronger. Plus the wildflowers were in bloom and the sky was a gorgeous, clear blue, and I felt truly in touch with nature. There is something about hiking up to a deserted clearing, and looking out at the greens and browns and blues of the world below you, and breathing in the crisp, cold mountain air that just makes you feel so alive.
Saturday, July 5
It’s still three weeks until our summit attempt of Mt. Whitney, but Mom is already starting to get all our supplies ready. We are taking two medium-sized backpacks, each filled with enough food and water to feed a family of five! But I guess it’s good to be prepared. As Mom always says, “Better safe than sorry — or thirsty!” The last thing we need is to be stuck on Whitney without enough provisions.
However, as I learned firsthand, water is heavy. Today I loaded up my backpack and put it on to test the weight … and I nearly fell over backwards! How am I ever going to carry that thing twenty-two miles?? At least it will gradually get lighter as I eat and drink during the journey.
Saturday, July 19
Today we went on our last real training hike. We will taper off this week to allow our bodies to recover and build up energy for the real thing. It’s crazy to think that at this very time next week, we’ll be climbing Mt. Whitney! We’ve been preparing for so long, yet I can’t believe The Big Day is almost here.