Day 3: Fifteen Miles!

21 July 2020 Evolution Lake to Florence Lake Trail (14.6 miles, +800/-3,900 feet). Today was another monsoon day in the Sierra, but we were far from any peaks and our only job was down, down, down, so we stayed dry.  We made great time (Bee’s Knees loves “bonus miles!”) and set ourselves up nicely to get our…

Day 2: Storm on Muir Pass

20 July 2020 JMT Bishop Pass Trail to Evolution Lake (12.1 miles, +3,500/-1,400 feet). Even though we were at lower elevation and in a nice campsite last night, most of us had trouble sleeping.  I was especially worried about this because today was quite possibly the most challenging day of the trip.  With monsoon conditions promising thunderstorms…

Day 1: Bishop Pass

19 July 2020 Long Lake to LeConte Canyon (9.9 miles, +1,600/-3,600 feet). Today we spent the whole day just getting to the John Muir Trail.  But the trail we were on over Bishop Pass was itself extremely beautiful in ways I did not expect—even though I’ve been here before! Sunrise on Long Lake was amazing.  I was…

Taboose Pass Trail

Taboose Pass to a mile past the Taboose Pass Trailhead (9 miles, +100/-7,000 feet). Today was down, down, down.  From my icy perch to the baking Owens Valley, it was a quick morning of extremes. I slept so hard last night!  I briefly woke up to see the sunset, the moonset, and the Milky Way,…

Pinchot Pass (Plus Three!)

Bull Lake to Taboose Pass(14 miles, +4,600/-2,900 feet). Today is a day I will never forget. It was really hard. It was maybe even harder than my solo trip over Forester Pass in the Spring of 2017. But it was way less scary. I knew what I was doing this time. Even so, it was…

Thunderbolt and Knapsack Pass

Dusy Basin to Thunderbolt Pass to Knapsack Pass to Bishop Pass Trailhead (15 miles, +3,300/-4,800 feet). We awoke this morning to a phenomenon I have never experienced.  One half of our tent had severe condensation and one half did not!  As it turns out, we had a heavy dew overnight, and the half of the…

Dusy Basin

Bishop Lakes Trailhead to Dusy Basin via Chocolate Lakes (13 miles, +3,600 feet, -2,000 feet). The weather yesterday looked just like the day before, so we decided to take a zero day in Bishop and wait for some sunshine.  It was an eerie day because the valley filled up with smoke from the Ferguson and Lions…

Day 4: A Peaceful Return

John Muir Trail campsite to Onion Valley Trailhead (7.8 miles, +1,600/-2,600 feet). We woke up early (as usual!) and hit the trail way before sunrise.  We did the short last bit of the Pacific Crest Trail before turning off towards Bullfrog Lake. The alpenglow was just settling in as we arrived at Bullfrog Lake, lighting up East…

Day 3: A Ridge with a View

Middle Paradise Valley to John Muir Trail campsite (17.1 miles, +5,200/-1,500 feet).   Today was the least enjoyable day of the trip, but I’m happy to report that it ended on a high note. We started from camp early, hoping to beat the heat and the bugs.  We beat neither!  By 8am it was buggy and steamy….

Day 2: The ‘Wow’ Lakes

Unnamed lake below Glen Pass to Middle Paradise Valley (17.7 miles, +700/-5,300 feet). We got up this morning and had to say goodbye to our lovely little lake. The 700 foot climb up to Glen Pass was relatively easy on fresh legs in the crisp morning air. We stopped at the pass to take pictures…

Day 1: Coyote Bowl

Onion Valley Trailhead to unnamed lake below Glen Pass (9.0 miles, +3,300/-1,000 feet). We left San Diego at 4am and stopped at the Sierra Interagency Visitor Center in Lone Pine to get our wilderness permit.  We then headed on to Independence, and hung a left to climb the switchbacks up to Onion Valley at 9,185…