Day 64: Donohue Pass

Memories from June 23

The valley before Donohue Pass was Disney have much snow. This gave it a much softer effect than previous passes. The recently melted snow reveals small ponds and scintillates in steams. It’s a gentler beauty than the  miles of snowfields under which you lost the trail.

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The approach to the pass itself, was, of course, covered with snow. Here’s. The view from the crest looking back that way. The crest was so wide that you had to walk twenty or so yards from one side to the other. Previous passes haven’t required more than turning around. This considered the last if the big passes and it’s certainly the gentlest.

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Lookin north down the valley towards Tuolumne Meadows. Those tracks in the snow start down the wrong side of the valley.

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Here’s the view across the valley from where I realized something was wrong. You can see the trail in the middle of the picture descending to the far side of the lake. It’s bushwhacking time.

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Fortunately, half way around the head of the valley I encountered the trail which was a very pleasant meeting. “Where did you come from?” I asked. Instead of answering it lead me by this pond.

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Looking back from the trail to where the tracks in the snow had disappeared. I think this side of the valley is easier to descend.

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Down in the valley, the valley so low, I rock hopped this stream, and felt really swell (sorry, most of my bad lyrical rewrites don’t get out). This, however, was the most challenging rock hop I’ve done. There were long steps to small rocks, rocks which you had to stand on which were slightly submerged so you had to rest only the thickest part of the sole on it, and some of the rocks moved. Since my feet stayed dry, it was a ton of fun. I think my opinion would have differed should I have slipped.

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A much easier stream crossing.

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Lyell Canyon, approaching Tuolumne Meadows.

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I really like Butterfly’s red cap bobbing over his green pack. Also, I’ve always wanted to try putting my poles behind my pack like that but worry about them catching on something.

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I’d run in to Butterfly, Turbo, Spreadsheet, and MP3 at Donohue Pass and hiked in to the Tuolumne Campground. I stopped at the store and picked up milk, chocolate milk, ice cream, strawberries, and an avocado. The store was just closing but they were nice enough to let me in since the grill was closed. Nana and Indy were in the camp as were a myriad other PCT hikers. We had an excellent fire. I stayed up late reading from the of the H G Wells collection I was able to download back a Red’s Meadow.

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