Thanks to ...
- Tim living & working in
Switzerland for the time being, with limited
- Emily spending two summer
months traveling in Uzbekistan, Tajikistan,
Kyrgyzstan, and Kazakhstan (on her own, as usual),
before starting her PhD at UC Berkeley
... there was,
unfortunately, no major family trip this summer.
Jennifer, and Emily did find time for a 9-day
backpacking trip in the Sierras: a one-way hike from
just north of Yosemite to just south of Lake Tahoe,
mostly along the Pacific Crest Trail. The first few
days were quite challenging, with the densest
mosquitoes we've ever seen (enough to drive one nutty;
think 20-30 bites in an unfortunate location each time
one used the proverbial commode), and swollen rivers
and snowfields to cross. All were thanks to a late and
unusually wet winter. On the benefit side, the
wildflowers were gorgeous!
also made the mistake of starting the trip with big
climbs and long days while our packs were at their
heaviest and we weren't yet acclimatized (Emily
excluded, who was in terrific high-altitude trekking
shape from her time in the 'stans). Due to the various
challenges, though primarily the mosquitoes, for the
first time ever we seriously considered an early exit.
But by day 4 we entered drier country, the problems
faded away, we made up the miles we'd lost, and
finished the trip as planned.