Blog Archive

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Glenforester Pass Day, aka Some Next Level Stuff

Day 104 9/24
Mileage 19
Camped by Tyndall Creek

Today was epic. We awoke to find our tents and all our belongings encased in ice. I got up early to enjoy some leisurely coffee and oatmeal with my breakfast shake. I felt absurdly energized. The hiking began with a 2.3-mile wall up to Glen pass. I hiked the last bit with Joe, and we were joined on top by a handful of other hikers. We stayed on the top for a good long while before we descended. After some more switchbacks, we took a break by a creek near the bottom of the trail down the pass. I remembered to wash my socks (finally!) And we all stuffed our faces with obscene amounts of food. The next few miles were maybe the only time on the trip when I was uncomfortably full, but it was worth it, because besides the bloating, the extra calories made me feel awesome! We were loaded with sustenance and ready to tackle Forster pass, the highest point on the PCT. I started climbing. I felt awesome. It got steeper, I felt awesome. I stopped most of the way up at a crystal-clear deep blue lake and thought "when will I have another chance to swim at 12,000 feet?" I didn't know the answer, so I stripped down and jumped in. Gee whiz, was it chilly. It was surpassed in coldness by perhaps only Lake Ivanhoe, which was covered in ice when I swam in it. It also felt awesome. I was refreshed, and my feet were clean, eliciting a general increase in morale (not that I needed it-did I mention I felt awesome?). I bombed up the last set of switchbacks and before I knew it, I popped up at the top. It's a sweet pass. Huge view, over 100 miles, easily. Joe was at the top when I arrived, and we realized that we are now pass pals! We've been at the top of all five high JMT passes together. Yay, pass pals! We all lazed about at the top, soaking it in. I can't believe we've already completed the last of our Sierra passes. This seemed ages away only a few weeks ago, and now it's over. Obviously, we have plenty of cool stuff in the future, but it's sad to see this landmark event pass, and to realize our time in the Sierra is drawing to a close. The other side of the pass was blasted out of the mountainside, and it was a great section to walk on. This side looks more open, more sparse. We hiked until just before dark, and now I am excited to pass out.

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