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TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

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Re: TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby SweetSierra » Sun Feb 03, 2013 4:34 pm

Thanks for the great trip report and beautiful photos! I did my first 8-day solo trip last year, so reading your report made me think about the emotions that arise hiking alone for that long of a time for the first time.

I've often gone up to altitude without being acclimated and often, I've been okay, with perhaps a slight headache. I appreciate the need to drink even when I'm not thirsty the first day in. On one trip, after coming up from Owens Valley and hiking to the Mammoth crest with a destination of Deer Lakes on the first day of a 9-day trip, I knew I should be drinking but, as is too often the case, I didn't.

We had another two miles and 1,000 feet or so to the lakes, and I was so nauseated, I had to stop and felt I would pass out. I felt fine (tired but okay) just before that. It was the worst I'd ever felt. As soon as I sat down and drank as much as I could (and had some raisins and nuts), I felt much better. I knew to drink even though I'd hydrated at the trailhead, but because I'm somewhat of a camel, I didn't. Lesson learned. I've also had some alcohol the first night of a trip, mixed with crystal light, and it's usually not a problem.
Last edited by SweetSierra on Sat Feb 09, 2013 8:44 am, edited 2 times in total.



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Re: TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby sparky » Sun Feb 03, 2013 6:19 pm

I enjoyed your report and pictures! Thanks!
There is a million ways to be human, all are worthwhile.

True happiness is the absence of striving for happiness.
-Chuang Tzu.
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Re: TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby AaronRDavis » Mon Feb 04, 2013 9:56 am

Awesome trip, epic scenery, great pictures.
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Re: TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby mello » Mon Feb 04, 2013 1:52 pm

Thanks so much for posting this. I can sense you had a great time even with all the things gone wrong (how could you not?). I especially love this quote:

"Occasionally, I’d snap a photo when I remembered that I wasn’t dreaming."

Great pictures too, thanks again!
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Re: TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby TehipiteTom » Mon Feb 04, 2013 1:53 pm

schmalz wrote:In general it's not ideal to drive from sea level and immediately hike to 12k feet. I'll probably be putting an increased emphasis on building in more acclimation time for my next big trip.

I'll second that. Every time I've done a strenuous hike after starting at sea level that day I've lived to regret it. I'm planning a trip over Kearsarge Pass this summer, and just to be safe I reserved a site at Onion Valley for the night before.
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Re: TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby schmalz » Mon Feb 04, 2013 3:20 pm

TehipiteTom wrote:
schmalz wrote:In general it's not ideal to drive from sea level and immediately hike to 12k feet. I'll probably be putting an increased emphasis on building in more acclimation time for my next big trip.

I'll second that. Every time I've done a strenuous hike after starting at sea level that day I've lived to regret it. I'm planning a trip over Kearsarge Pass this summer, and just to be safe I reserved a site at Onion Valley for the night before.


I think that the biggest contributor to getting AMS was pushing myself past my comfort zone. On the day 2 ascent when I dry heaved, I was pushing very hard to get to Lake Reflection as soon as I could.

The following day, I pushed myself as hard as possible to get up to my campsite before dark. I think that is probably the most tired I've ever been. I'm probably always suffering slightly from elevation on my trips, but I keep things in check enough where it doesn't become an issue. Pushing myself to my limit was probably my downfall.

I definitely learned to be more flexible and to listen to my body a bit more out there.
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Re: TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby kpeter » Tue Feb 05, 2013 12:53 am

Magnificent photography; you may inspire me to put this loop on my list.

I thought I recognized a scene or two and so I dug around through the photographs of a trip I took to Reflection 10 years ago. This is not nearly as beautifully composed or photographed as your version (I love the color and water motion in your shot, not to mention the superior framing), but I thought you might smile to see that the same small rivulet captured both of us at different moments ten years apart. It was deja vue all over again for me
ferny creek-1.jpg
Ferny sidestream
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Re: TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby riverwalker » Tue Feb 05, 2013 8:57 pm

Great TR! I have been inspired and look forward to being able to steal away for over a week to do this. Maybe with my boys when they get older.

BTW what tripod are you using. I have an older Gitzo CF tripod but would like to try to get a little lighter for my long trips. I seem to draw too much attention when I hike with mine:)
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Re: TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby Tollermom » Tue Feb 05, 2013 10:18 pm

Hopefully your photos will be part of my dreams tonight. Thank you for sharing the splendor.
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Re: TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby schmalz » Tue Feb 05, 2013 10:41 pm

riverwalker wrote:Great TR! I have been inspired and look forward to being able to steal away for over a week to do this. Maybe with my boys when they get older.

BTW what tripod are you using. I have an older Gitzo CF tripod but would like to try to get a little lighter for my long trips. I seem to draw too much attention when I hike with mine:)


It's a Feisol CF tripod. It weighs 3 lbs. including ballhead. I get some attention too, which I usually appreciate. I like talking to people out there so anything that'll spark up a conversation. I'd love to get something a little lighter and easier to carry, but there seems to be nothing between the full on carbon tripods and flimsy lightweight ones that aren't big or stable enough.
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Re: TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby Herm » Tue Feb 05, 2013 10:49 pm

Thanks for sharing schmalz. I really enjoyed your photos, and the story you told to go along with them. You traveled some big country.
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TR: Circle of Solitude (7/14-7/21 2012)

Postby Bluewater » Fri Feb 08, 2013 9:32 pm

Thanks for a fun read and excellent photos. I can relate to that feeling after hiking solo for 8 days.
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