Re: [John Muir Trail] Just completed the JMT
- Thanks for the detailed report and congratulations!VirajFrom: k2poohtri <k2pooh15@...>
Sent: Thursday, June 13, 2013 4:33 PM
Subject: [John Muir Trail] Just completed the JMT
Hello everyone, here's my very abbreviated summary of my amazing SoBo JMT hike.
I started at TM on May 31st. Donahue Pass was snowy on both sides. On the south side, up until the very top, I was able to walk on dirt. On the north side, much more snow and not many prints to follow. The snow pretty much stopped in the basin just below Donahue Pass. I only saw one other person. (Josh, whom had consulted this group for advice).
On June 1, passed 4 PCT NoBo, Island Pass had decent snow but very manageable. I used microspikes on that Pass. The toughest part of the ENTIRE trail was going up, out of Garnet Lake. No one else had been there. There was no trail and it was very steep. That was not fun.
June 3, encountering more NoBo PCT. Doubleshot had just come off of Silver Pass, where I was going to. Good amount of snow on the north side. I actually lost the prints and went over my "own" Pass as a T-Storm was coming in hard. :-(
June 4, caught the 9:45am ferry to VVR. Doubleshot had informed me about the ferry only running in the AM. Had a great near-zero day eating lots of food and hearing great stories for the PCTers. The staff there is amazing.
June 5, took the 9am ferry along with an amazing peach/berry pie back to the trail. Bear Creek crossing wasn't an issue, even at 4pm (high water time). Selden Pass, small snow field on the North side with one set of foot prints, very compact footing and quick passing.
June 7, Muir Pass... Lots of snow from Wanda Lake all the way up and over pass to the outlet of Helen Lake. Going up I actually chose to walk in the creek as try to walk in footsteps. I hit, and HIGHLY recommend to you as well as there WILL still be snow there, Muir Pass EARLY. Passed 15 PCT NoBo
June 8, Mather Pass. A few snow fields in which you cut the switchbacks and walk on the dirt. Just follow what the PCTers have already done. 2 big show fields that you have to cross with good footing and one path. South side, ez. 23 PCTers
June 9, Pinchot Pass easy peasy...
June 10, Hit Glen Pass at 7am. Perfect traction as there are 2 long snow fields to cross. There were 3 options. You should pick the higher option. Came over Kearsarge Pass to Onion Valley to resupply and have a picnic. Storm set in, went home with family and came back to trail the next day. Passed 43 PCT
June 11, Forrester Pass, a few snow fields. Totally easy. One snow field on the south side. Passed 55 PCT.
June 12, Summit Mt. Whiney. One snow field near summit. Totally cut in so it's fine. Camped at Trail Lake... a HUGE MISTAKE!!! What an awful place. A bazillion people, wag bags everywhere and the wind is relentless. Go the additional 2 miles to Outpost Lake. Much better.
June 13, got picked up at WP
Questions you have...
1) BUGS: Heck ya!!! If there was green there were bugs, even at 11,000'. Have your deet, head nets and just be prepared,
2) Temps; I camped around the 10,000'- 11,000' and the low was 34*. I have a 20* bag with a liner and medium weight thermal and was fine. Did cowgirl style camping 50% of the time
3) Trail Info: Your best source of information is the people walking towards you.
4) Water: there's water everywhere. Once you get south of Forrester there is much less, no little streams. All of the creeks have plenty of flow. If it shows water on the map, there there will be water.
If you are reading this now odds are the only place there will be snow is on Muir Pass. Hit it early.
Mt. Whitney water: I recommend getting 2 liters of at the outlet of Arctic Lake on your way to Mt Whitney and down to almost Tail Camp.
I hope this helps. I had a wonderful time. It was an amazing experience. I wish you a wonderful journey as well...