A view from Glen's Pass.

Day 17 of JMT Revisited (July 9, 2004)

It has been almost a repeat of yesterday. I woke up at 5:50 am, and I got everybody up at 6:10. We started hiking at 7:10. It always takes exactly one hour from the time everybody wakes up.

The hike up to Glen's Pass was a killer – but I guess they all are. The trails are definitely maintained better in this area. After the first 700’ or so, we got a good view of the pass from below. It was so high and steep that my heart almost stopped. But after working at it another 45 minutes I was on top – at 9:00 am. Beautiful view.

I didn’t feel good. I think it is altitude sickness – combined with hunger. I ate my candy bar and felt pretty good on the way down. We passed an older lady (maybe 60 years old?) going up with what looked like her teenaged grand daughter. Put me to shame.

We hiked all the way down to Vidette Meadows without a break. It was very beautiful hiking. There were beautiful lakes to look at (Charlotte Lake for example). Trail was easy and nice. I got to Vidette Meadows at 11:30 am. We had tuna for lunch – delicious.

At 12:30 pm, we started again going up towards Forrester Pass. After about another hour of hiking we took another jerky break. And then we arrived at the “Boy Scout” camp at 3:30 pm. The Boy Scout camp is at about 11,000’, and 2 miles short of Forrester Pass. This place is special because we have stayed here at least twice before. We named it the Boy Scout camp because we found a carving on a tree that said it had been “built” by the scouts. I think the rangers have since tore down whatever they built. Ken remembers it because he is always sick here, but not this time. Ken now has the most energy of all of us.

I washed my clothes and body in the stream. (So COLD.) Now I will have sort of clean socks and shirts for the next two days.

Everybody is excited about going home. We are on map #2 (out of 13) to everybody’s delight. And we are half way up Forrester Pass. After Forrester, we only have to do Whitney, then we are done.

I want to mention another crazy thing Wes did today. After he rested for about 45 minutes in camp, he built a huge reclining chair out of rocks – amazing – took him at least an hour. Ken took a picture of it.

Tonight we are having the cheap brand of food for dinner. No one is happy about it. I will let you know how it tastes in a minute.

Another thing: I am constantly amazed at how none of the trail signs match the maps in terms of distance. Sometimes the maps say longer, other times the maps say shorter. For example, the map says its 10 miles between Mather and Pinshot passes. But the trail sign at the midpoint junction says it is 4 miles each way, for a total of 8 between the two passes. By our maps today we did 11.4 miles. Not much. No wonder today was easy.

Dinner turned out to be “okay”, about a C-, if the REI brand is a B+. It was beef stew. We all are still hungry! We opened another package of jerky. We are going to do another jerky tomorrow, then on the last day we will have 3 packages of jerky for the six of us – but that will be all the food we have for that day.

We didn’t set up the tents tonight. I am really looking forward to sleeping under the stars. Also, it will be a moonless night for most of the night.

We read Romans 13 and 14. Tomorrow will be our last night. If we read Romans 15 and 16, we will have finished Romans when we finish the JMT. Night.