I'm still here chilling at Tom's place in Kennedy Meadows, enjoying the weather and relaxing with the other thru-hikers who are holed up here for the moment. Fortunately everyone left here for the moment is cool; some rather grating characters hiked out this morning, and now the place is a little quieter. Yellowbird, Salty, Caveman and I participated in the town's annual road cleanup, helping pick up litter and join in on some BBQ action afterwords. In the meantime, Andrew, a hiker I met down south at the Andersons, just caught up and is sticking around for a few days. Sunseeker, Subzero, and Slim, who drove down to Green Valley earlier, are scheduled to be back sometime today as well. All in all, its a good crew to be running with for the moment, though as soon as we get out of KM, the herd is bound to thin out again fast.
Taking part in the cleanup let us see a bit more of the town and meet the locals. The community here is pretty awesome, for though it is just a scattering of buildings amidst the trees and hills, everyone is very tightly knit. The general store seems to be the focus of activity, a great place to sit and mingle, while the fire department seems to be a major organizer of local events. Because the entire area is off the grid, people are used to lending a hand to keep things running. Luckily we are here at one of the best times of year, and, despite taking it easy for the last few weeks, we are still ahead of the main crush of hikers. I'm planning on heading out tomorrow morning with the bulk of the gang here; given that we are all crazy excited and rested, its going to be a strong few days. Once again, I don't expect much in the way of cell service or internet connection, so this might be the last post for a while, but you never know out here. Talk to you later, hopefully with some great stories from the Sierras!