Erik, the really smart thing to do would have been to slide down the hill to the LeConte Ranger Station, which was only 50 yards off the main trail with a sign. Now, rangers are not there 100% of the time, but there will be one coming or going just about every day. When I was there on the evening of August 5, there was one lady ranger plus two other NPS employees, maybe trail workers. The ranger had carried in her own large size Bearikade full of goodies fresh from the grocery store in Bishop. This other guy was asking her for advice about what he should do for his food problem, and she volunteered her excess food. Otherwise, she would have directed him to the shortest and easiest route out, if that was what he wanted. She was practically trying to "sell" her food to the guy.
If the guy hadn't scored any food, I had beaucoup food, and I would have given him some. I had less than one day to travel out, so I was just hauling dead weight. Plus there was at least 15-20 others camped around the general area.
Now, on the other hand, I don't think that I would want to claim that the bear stole my food. They would not feel quite so kindly.