21 JUN 2019 – 07 JUL 2019
From Yosemite we went straight on to Mt Shasta for an attempt at Britt’s second 4000+m peak. Some extra acclimatization was necessary because sleeping would be located at 3000+m elevation.. on the snow.. in a tent! Black Butte delivered a nice hike with views on our goal for a big part of the way. Mt Shasta: One of those mountains you look at and say ‘I want to be on top of that thing!’. During the night some drama took place though and at the start of day 1 Britt was fighting stomach cramps and a blather infection.. Not the best way to start but we had to try anyway!
Day 1: 3,5 hours of pushing through roughly 1200 meters of elevation in the snow and our sleeping spot was attained easily. Unexpectedly, there was quite a crowd around! Who doesn’t love to wake at the sound of puking? Fun fact: The mountain rangers take their job very seriously here. So serious we had to pack out our doodies after shooting into the bulls-eye. Not an easy task I tell ya!
Day 2: Moving on up. The pace was a bit slower this day as the stomach aches didn’t agree with starting at 4 AM, but we still went fast enough to bypass a lot of other groups. A great motivation for sure! 8 AM in the morning and we were standing at the top of a great view. And then the fun part started 😄. Since there were no glaciers on this mountain we got to slide! And when we mean slide, we mean getting a proper ass-freeze from a more than 1 km slide downward!!! WHIIIEEE!
Chasing the sun
WAAUUWIE, these trees are sooo big! Are we having a déjà-vue here? Yes I think so, because these Redwood trees are for sure as impressive as the Giant Sequoias further inland. And a definite bonus: All of the paths are a lot less crowded! As you can imagine we loved the discovery of the Humboldt Redwoods State Park.
It was a really fun change of pace to drive down the California coast, stopping every once and a while and chilling for realsies for the first time in a long time. Some highlights along the way:
- Stopping at random beaches and being delighted that there were harbor seals and sea lions just lying around
- Spotting several humpback whales on a boat tour with a whole lot of donuts (mmmmh)
- Getting dinner and a show from some sea otters splashing about
- Discovering a colony of elephant seals and just enjoying their loud barking
One of our fuller days included visiting San Fransisco and as we would stay there for only 1 day we had to make it count. So here’s what we did: Found ourselves a free parking spot in the city (score!), did a very interesting ‘free’ walking tour, discovered a rooftop garden with a savory burrito in hand, strolled through the mission district to look at the murals and enjoyed a tran feast going on, ate a lot of ice cream and went to a San Fransisco Giants game on the cheap. Oh yes and the next morning we woke up with a view of the Golden Gate Bridge. It was out first city visit in months but for sure one to be remembered.
We couldn’t leave the US so close to the 4th of July and not stay to celebrate. For us it wasn’t a big bombastic event. We chose to go to a small town and go with the flow. Which meant we were treated on some very American events. A patriotic pet contest, a rubber ducky race over the pond, a car show, a parade and fireworks. Now that was exactly what we needed to leave the US behind with the idea that we had truly seen everything..
Now, on to the wall and beyond!