Vermillion Valley Resort (VVR) – Two Full Zero Days!
7900 (+/- 0) – 0.0 miles
Free Maps Online – Day 11 and 12 – Map 10
I am sure I will end up leaving some folks out, but these are the hikers I remember most:
Sye & Alex, Southern & Rubs, Spencer, Bukket, Pappa Joe, Grey Wolf, G-Man, Tank, Hisu, Cheese, William S., and Elena (soon to get a new name).
Jake and I found cribbage and backgammon in the games cabinet and threw some dice and played some crib. Sye taught us how to play Euchre just before he left. Hisu knew how to play also, so Hisu and Jake teamed up and Sye and I teamed up. Sye had to leave mid game, but Bukket was interested and he took Sye’s place. Fun game and some good times.
We talked a lot with Sye, Alex, and Spencer and watched them pack – envious of their lightweight gear and gourmet food collection. Sye and Alex also had some rodent proof stuff sacks they made themselves out of a fabric lined or threaded with Kevlar that they bought from an outdoor fabric/supply store near Seattle. Spencer kindly said that we would meet again as he was meeting other friends and going out Kearsarge as well. It was nice, but we knew, we ain’t catching up to nobody. We couldn’t catch the cold if it walked any faster.
Southern and Rubs were only there a short time, but they were both highly entertaining and seemed like nice guys. Southern had this thing – he just seemed indomitable and like he would have to lose a leg or something to take the smile off his face. Great attitudes on these guys.
Grey Wolf seemed to be hiking alone, drifting in and out of other groups as chance would have it, but utterly content with his hike and his own company. We did not talk a lot, but we did chat about the trail and hiking and how privileged we were to be out there doing it. And we had that whole Milk bond going for us 😉
I did not get to talk too long with Tank or Cheese either, but we did share some nice time around the fire and the eatin’ hall. Tank was unflappable. Cheese was filled with fun and joy.
William S. was another cool and surprising fellow. We talked about his past experiences on the PCT, JMT, and other hikes. We chatted about hiking with dogs. After reviewing our schedules a little, he told us that we should call him once we hit Kearsarge and he might be there and would happily give a shuttle to town and back. Later he said he should still be in the area and if we did not have anything else worked out, we should call him and he would pick us up at Mt. Whitney and drive us back to our car in Yosemite!!
G-Man was another happy happy guy. We also talked about how lucky and grateful we were to be allowed the privilege of distance hiking in the Sierras. We talked about many things, and he became a part of our group the last day and evening. A few more adventures with G-Man pending…
I did not talk with Elena much at VVR. But I did lend her my charger for her phone, and we looked at maps and talked schedule a bit together. It seemed that we had a similar schedule in mind and she decided to join us for a while to see how walking together worked out.
And then there is Pappa Joe. We sort of met over the Stanley Cup finals. Joe lives near LA and was rooting for the Kings. Jake is a big fan of the Phoenix Coyotes. Every time the Kings scored (which was about 37 times that game) Joe gave out a cheers. It was fun. The next morning Floyd was talking with Joe as Joe was just easing into his first zero and it took about 3 minutes for Floyd to decide that another zero was called for. We had not planned to leave until the 4:00 pm shuttle and then only walk about 1.5 miles and camp, so it did not take too long to get me on Team Zero as well. We hung out with Joe most of that day and since there were three beds anyhow, invited Joe to tent with us that eve.
Who knew that we would only spend about 4 days apart over the next month!
Stay Tuned as Fox Force Five is Born and Elena gets a trail name…