July 7, 2016
Tuolumne Meadows to Lyell Canyon
Total distance: 5.0 miles
If I could not walk far and fast, I think I should just explode and perish. ~Charles Dickens
It had been three months since Chris and I were in Yosemite, too long to be away. Summer was in full swing and I craved a trail walk. Before leaving home, we discussed a route—one that was not too long for Chris and not too short for me. We agreed upon a walk to the river.
Though we came to the river early on, we kept walking.
It was a weekday morning and cooler in the mountains than at home. For the most part, we had the trail to ourselves.
The pool of water that we passed along the way looked inviting.
The river veered away from the trail. We walked through a meadow flecked with yellow flowers—a section that is simultaneously the Pacific Crest Trail and the John Muir Trail.
We entered the forest where marmots lounged on behemoth boulders.
When the river twisted back towards the trail, we found a secluded spot in the shade of pines. We had walked far enough for the day. Looking into the glass-clear water, we watched tiny trout dart in and out of sight. The water was icy cold and quickly numbed my feet.
If we kept walking south, the trail would have taken us to either Mexico (via the PCT) or Mt. Whitney (via the JMT). We will never walk that far. However, we will return to Lyell Canyon in September for a backpacking trip where we will surely walk farther than Chris wants, but not far enough for me.