June 19: after conquering Muir Pass - the hardest Sierra pass- I was to be rewarded by going over Selden Pass - "the easiest pass". But, like so many other instance on this hike, I would beg to differ when done. One of my big issues today was my phone. I had charged it I the hotel in Bishop before hitting the trail, but it didn't really take that well. The battery died amazingly quickly. So I recharged it with my external battery, but that, too, has been charged in the same hotel outlet and only had 1/2 charge stores, instead of the usual 1 1/2 charges. Result: I was running on empty with the phone, and looking at hiking the sierras with no camera and no GPS.
That makes for a hard hike over a pass, when you can't check your progress on the app, and when southbounder a are giving you conflicting advice: "only .5 miles to the top!" Followed by: "about 2 1/2 miles to the top!"
Good thing the views were so gorgeous.
Up and over the pass with beautiful, exceedingly cold lakes, and down the other side into a more wooded, forest-y valley. I stopped for a snack break at a river and who should I bump into, but Shuffle- who I hadn't seen since he ran out of water during the 44 mile stretch- and Piney- who I hadn't seen since Ziggy and the Bear's! We caught up, and I asked if they had heard anything about the VVR- Verrmillion Valley Ranch. It could be reached the next day on a side trail where I could recharge my phone, but it had poor reputation. They had heard good things about VVR from southbounders and we're going to stop in. It was settled, then. I would head to VVR tomorrow.
Onward I hiked, and after a quick stop to swim in a warmer River, I set up camp with 3 other people 2 miles before the side trail to VVR.