Wednesday, July 29, 2009

John Muir Trail 2009

John Muir Trail - 2009

We are back after a 19 day adventure through the back bone of the high Sierra mountains. The JMT is a trail that starts in Yosemite and ends at the top of mount Whitney over 200 miles of walking to the south. Our adventure was one of beautiful high mountain lakes, steep passes and lots of mosquitoes. We are both so grateful for the prayers and support of everyone. The Lord blessed our trip in just about every way that it could be.

A lot of the passes still had a lot of snow and we had fun working our way down some of them. There was nothing too crazy, just some careful stepping and a little bit of sliding.

Yes, the Sierras are having a big bug year. Most evenings it was more comfortable to be in the tent and away from them. Our first evening in Yosemite I counted over sixty mosquitoes on the mesh door to the tent, waiting for a meal. The tent time actually turned out to be a real blessing. Lina and I were able to do a bunch of reading out loud together and came to really enjoy those times of quiet and rest... much more relaxing than keeping up with the frantic pace of the big city!

One of our favorite locations was Evolution valley. Some of the most majestic peaks and views to be had on the whole trail are found there. We had a great time watching the colors of the sunset paint the mountains with all kinds of different hues.

We have learned a lot about thru hiking over the past two summers and this time we were able to go lighter on our food thanks to Lauren and her dad Glenn. They resupplied us on day 15 making our trek that much lighter. It was great to see friends again on the trail and we especially enjoyed the fresh fruit and cheese they brought with them. Thanks again Matts!

We decided to come out a day earlier to have some extra time before Dom and Sarah's wedding in Ohio. Here we are walking up to Mt. Whitney and finishing the trail through the Mt. Whitney portal. It was another amazing trip! We have already began to plan the next backpacking adventure. Perhaps the PCT, AT?!?! Maybe in years to come but one thing is for sure, God willing, we will do some sort of outdoor camping each summer.

Here is our before and after shot. We lost some pounds! Mark about 15 and Lina about 8. Now our challenge is keeping it off:)!!

Thanks to everyone who was praying for us and supporting us, you guys were such an encouragement!

Monday, July 6, 2009

JMT... the night before

Well... Lina just took off to bed and I am just behind her. Our bags are packed and plans are made. Tomorrow we drive up north and then on Thursday we start walking. The bigness of what we are doing is starting to settle in a little more. It is kind of like seeing that cool roller coaster and really wanting to ride it, and then actually being strapped into it with the cars clicking up the rails for that first big fall. We are locked in and heading out. There is a lot of excitement with us both right now. Every time we head out for something like this there is a real transformation that happens in us during the time. Being in the wilderness, being saturated in natural beauty for long periods of time does wonders for the soul. I think we are both looking forward to encountering God and each other in a deeper and different way. Hummmmmm.....

Please keep us in your prayers and thoughts during our time in the woods. Pray for safety... blisters, bumps, sore legs etc... but also keep our spirits in your prayers. Pray that God would meet us during this time. Pray that God would work in our lives individually as well as working in us as a young couple. I think that more so this year than in years past our goal is not just to accomplish the trek but rather to be spiritually transformed by the process of doing this trek. The walking and the miles are only a part of what our desire is for the time.

We love you all...