JMT 20. 8. 2019 – Garnet Lake over Island Pass and Donohue Pass to Lyell Forks – 11.8 miles

(all images are clickable for a larger version)

When I woke up and left the tent around 6:45 am the air was quiet and the lake crystal clear like a perfect mirror, reflecting the mountains in the first rays of the sun. An hour later some turbulence had restarted and distorted the surface.

During breakfast my tent neighbours came out, and we began to talk about lots of topics, including the recent development of the political situation in the US. So I left later than planned, around 9 am. The tent was still wet then from the high humidity close to the lake.

The trail went with some ups and downs along Ruby Lake and Emerald Lake to the beautiful Thousand Island Lake (9.850 ft).

Here the JMT and the PCT which had split at Devil’s Postpile reunite, before the trail continues 1.5 miles to Island Pass (10.200 ft). This pass is so small that you barely notice it.

But the real pass today was Donohue Pass, the last one over 11.000 ft on the hike. I did not like those 5 miles from Island Pass to Donohue Pass, my feet were tired and the trail often full of stones.

Finally a bit before 5 pm I had reached the pass. Just lots of rocks and two signs that told me I leave Ansel Adams Wildernis and enter Yosemite Wilderness. Both could need some restoration…

Now I tried to add as many miles as possible, but the trail often was not good for walking. After fording through Lyell Fork I met again my swedish friends who had set up their camp, but I continued for another hour. The trail went along the west slope of the valley on rocky terrain with some creek crossings, but got better later. When I found a camp site at 7:30 pm I called it a day though I had made less than 12 miles.

While I prepared dinner I did not find my long titanium spoon! – so I must have left it where I had my lunch break and used it to put some hydration mix into the water. It turned out that eating without a spoon is quite difficult…