- John Muir Trail Date Set, Permit Reserved
- John Muir Trail Planning
- John Muir Trail Packing List
- John Muir Trail Journal
- John Muir Trail Day 1: Yosemite Valley to Clouds Rest Junction
- John Muir Trail Day 2: Clouds Rest Junction to Half Dome to Sunrise Creek Crossing
- John Muir Trail Day 3: Sunrise Creek Crossing to Lower Cathedral Lake
- John Muir Trail Day 4: Lower Cathedral Lake to Tuolumne Meadows
- John Muir Trail Day 5: Tuolumne Meadows to Donohue Pass
- John Muir Trail Day 6: Donohue Pass to Thousand Island Lake
- John Muir Trail Day 7: Thousand Island Lake to Rosalie Lake
- John Muir Trail Day 8: Rosalie Lake to Reds Meadow
- John Muir Trail Day 9: Reds Meadow to Deer Creek
- John Muir Trail Day 10: Deer Creek to Cascade Valley Junction
- John Muir Trail Day 11: Cascade Valley Junction to Silver Pass to Vermilion Valley Resort
- John Muir Trail Day 12: Vermilion Valley Resort
- John Muir Trail Day 13: Vermilion Valley Resort to Marie Lake
- John Muir Trail Day 14: Marie Lake to Selden Pass to Muir Trail Ranch
- John Muir Trail Day 15: Muir Trail Ranch to McClure Meadow
- John Muir Trail Day 16: McClure Meadow to Muir Pass to Lake West of Helen Lake
- John Muir Trail Day 17: Lake West of Helen Lake to Deer Meadow
- John Muir Trail Day 18: Deer Meadow to Mather Pass to Main South Fork Kings Crossing
- John Muir Trail Day 19: Main South Fork Kings Crossing to Pinchot Pass to Woods Creek
- John Muir Trail Day 20: Woods Creek to Glen Pass to Vidette Meadow
- John Muir Trail Day 21: Vidette Meadow to Forester Pass to Bighorn Plateau
- John Muir Trail Day 22: Bighorn Plateau to Guitar Lake
- John Muir Trail Day 23: Guitar Lake to Mount Whitney to Whitney Portal
- John Muir Trail: Post Trip Thoughts
Journal entry for August 21, 2009
Approximate distance hiked: 14.3 miles, 23.0 km
I slept pretty well despite being in the super crowded Tuolumne Meadows Backpacker’s Campground. The big family next to me was very quiet after 10pm. Woke up at 5am and since I couldn’t fall back to sleep, I decided to get an early start. It was still dark and cold outside. After packing quickly, I went to see if Buzz and G-Man were still around. They were getting ready and invited me to hike with them. I gladly accepted, thinking it would be a nice change from the first 4 days of hiking alone.
We said good bye to Glen and Corinne but before we left, a small bear came to visit the campground. People immediately started to make a lot of noise by shouting and banging pots. The poor bear got scared and run back into the woods. I was able to get a glimpse of it, and it looked like a panda, with a wide white stripe on it’s torso.
The scenery got progressively better throughout the day. The first 9 miles or so out of Tuolumne runs next to Lyell Fork through Lyell Canyon, which has almost no elevation changes.
We run into what I call a “trail snob”, hikers who do things a certain way and looks down on everybody who doesn’t. This particular one asked Buzz “When did you start? 4 Days ago?”. Buzz said yes, and the “trail snob” replied with “Hmmm, you’ve got to put some more miles on you”. So this character first guessed it was 4 days ago and then proceeds to criticize that. How condescending. Fortunately, I’d say that 98% of the people I encountered on the JMT were extremely nice and polite and unlike these “trail snobs”.
We crossed Lyell Fork through a nice bridge and stopped an hour for lunch. The long and gradual ascent to Donohue Pass starts from this point.
There is a small waterfall (mostly dry late in the season) before reaching Donohue Pass. The trail goes around it before reaching the top of the falls. I jumped through a few rocks to get a spectacular view to the north.
Right before the pass, we left Yosemite National Park and entered Ansel Adams Wilderness.
I didn’t realize I had reached Donohue Pass until the trail started to descend sharply. There was no sign of the pass on top. Coming down, I realized for the first time that I’m very slow going downhill. I struggled to keep pace with Buzz and G-Man. It was now a little bit past 5pm and we started to look for a place to camp. We didn’t find any for a while. Finally, G-Man was able to find a few nice flat sandy spots in the marshy meadow about 1 mile after the pass. The weather started to get windy, there were a good number of clouds in the sky, and it looked like it could start raining anytime.
It had been a long day, about 14 miles. I don’t’ think I’ve ever done a 14-mile day in my life. The climb to the pass felt easy for me. I was happy that the pre-trip training hikes of Mount Baldy helped me get in shape.