PCT: Day 233: Tuolumne Falls

Direction: Southbound 

Trail location: 1711.1

Cumulative miles hiked 2019/2021: 2356

Cumulative miles hiked 2021: 339
Miles hiked today: 13.4
Elevation: 8599High/low temp/humidity: 73/40/20

Spinning on the turntable: Peter Gabriel: Growing up Live

Four lanes

The trail is fairly easy today. In this section there are actually four different lanes. I passed one section with five lanes! Which lane would you hike it? I hiked on the far left. I think a “good” hiker will hike in the lane that has the most damage to avoid damaging “better” sections. If there’s nothing else that you should have learned about me by now, I’m not a good hiker. I step around the mud puddles, not into them. I seek dry ground, not wet ground. If I don’t need to walk in a trough, I don’t. Color me a bad hiker.

As I’m approaching Tuolumne Falls I’m seeing more and more day hikers. It’s odd. Yesterday I think I saw two or three hikers all day, and today, as I approach a more popular tourist location, there’s hikers everywhere. I don’t mind, it’s nice to see other hikers. (They smell good too!)

It was nice to hike next to the falls and river for most of the afternoon. I might have hiked near the falls for about an hour, and near the river for the entirety of the afternoon.

Where’s the trail?

The rocks on the left of the image denote the edge of the trail. I’ve been doing a fair amount of “rock hiking” the past week. I’ve found that it’s easiest for me to look “down” the trail perhaps 25 or 50 yards and seek out the trail when I can’t see it right in front of me. Sometimes it’s just a big open rock space and the trail resumes just a bit further down the road.

It just wouldn’t be complete if I didn’t wrap up this section of hiking with another shot of a staircase/path of a rock trail. Seriously, just how much funding does this park receive?!?
I can in all honestly that based on all the rock scrambles and rock stair cases that I wouldn’t want to hike this trail, in this park, when it’s raining or snowy. That’s a serious “no”. I’ve slipped and slid all over the place and it’s the dry season!

Tomorrow Noelle and I will work our our plan for the remainder of the trail. I think I have about 275 miles left to go, and it’s some of the most remote hiking of the entire PCT. We’ll figure out resupply and when/where we’ll meet up. I think we’ll meet again in a few days at Reds Meadow Junction , and then I’ll have one 11 day stretch and another 7 day stretch to wrap this up. This takes us back to our exact discussion earlier this week about weight versus distance. If I carry more food I can hike longer distances between resupplies, but if I carry more weight I’ll hike slower, requiring more supplies.

I think we’re almost at the end of the freeze dried food we purchased in 2019!


  1. Heidi Halverson

    Are we taking bets? My money is on 8/31. You are going to to do it Steve. You will have another crisis of confidence, maybe take a rest, but you will do it. I think this so awesome.

    • mcgarveysan

      I am (slowly) doing this! It is totally awesome (on some days) and really painful (on other days).

  2. Heidi Halverson

    275/18 = 15.2 ?


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