Day 10 on the John Muir Trail…
Today was a special day. Today was a zero day — hiker-speak for a rest day or “zero-mileage” day. And Vermilion Valley Resort was the perfect place for it.
When we arrived at VVR, we checked in and they opened a tab for our expenses. You settle up before you leave, and since we would be here for two nights, there would be plenty of opportunities to part with our money.
Last night, we set up camp in the free tent camping area, then feasted on steak and cold beer in the dining hall. The dining hall has a rotating menu and a few optional choices, and the seating is on long benches which you share with your new best friends.
This morning, I awoke at sunrise, and wandered down to the lakefront. The water was still and a mist swirled above it as the sun warmed the surface.
Joan and I managed to book a small room for the night. In addition to a free tent camping area, VVR also has tent cabin and actual rooms for rent. The first thing we did after checking into our room was shower. The second thing was start our laundry. Yes, VVR has a washer and dryer, too.
We picked up our resupply package and distributed it among Hari, Joan, Jeffrey and I. We at breakfast, lunch and dinner in the dining hall, enjoying the extra calories and guilt-free eating. “Yes, I believe I will have a slice of pie, thank you!”
But the best part about VVR wasn’t sleeping in a real bed. It wasn’t the steak or the pie. The best part about VVR was the conversations we had with other hikers at the dinner table and around the campfire at night. These conversations enlightened, entertained and inspired us. The hiker community is bound by the experiences we shared, and those bonds are stronger for it.
We met many thru-hikers, some hiking it for their second or third time. One young couple were headed northbound. The family who with the “missing” teen hiker on day 7 was there. All of us were glad to share a hot meal for once not cooked over a backpacking stove.
Taking a zero day recharged our batteries, and the experience at VVR was memorable. We were ready to once again hit the JMT tomorrow.
Important! Check Lake Conditions with VVR
In 2010, Lake Edison was at capacity. In 2013, the water levels had dropped quite a bit, meaning a longer walk to the boat launch, especially on the west end of the lake. The moonscape below is actually the lake bed. No, it’s not dried up, but you can see the levels are way down.
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Tomorrow, we head to from Mono Creek to Rosemarie Meadow.
Originally hiked on August 5, 2010.