JMT 7. 8. 2019 – Rae Lakes to Woods Creek – 9.3 miles

(all images are clickable for a larger version)

Next day, next pass. OK, only approach to Pinchot Pass, because the pass itself was 14 miles away, so I would have to walk >15 miles to cross it. Too far for me.

I started a bit before 9 am, with beautiful weather, along the east shore of Rae Lakes. A mile later I passed Arrowhead Lake. At around 10.000 ft elevation in the high valley a marmot was close to the trail, enjoying the sun, too.

After the Baxter Pass Trail junction the JMT went downhill into the Woods Creek valley (8500 ft). Another 4 miles, and I reached the well known Suspension Bridge past noon.

I had my lunch there, and the sky started to get more and more cloudy, with even some drops of rain. But I continued without my rain jacket as the trail now went uphill again; so some water cooling was welcome; it was warm due to the lower elevation.

But an hour later the rain got heavier, followed by hail. I walked together with a hiker group from France, and we finally sought shelter under trees, and stayed there for half an hour, until most of the shower had ended.

I continued until a camp site before the Sawmill Pass Trail junction, at around 9800 ft, and 4.5 miles from Pinchot Pass. I would have liked to come a bit closer to the pass. So more miles left for tomorrow.

When I set up camp and the waxing moon appeared over the horizon, the sky was blue again!