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John Muir Trail -- August 25, 2016
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John Muir Trail
Departing Kearsarge Lake (view S back towards camp)

Day 9. Backpacking Day 8.
Kearsarge Lakes, Kearsarge Pass, Onion Valley, to Lone Pine

On the last day, I hiked up over Kearsarge Pass, a relatively easy pass at only 11,709 feet elevation, and then all the way down to the Onion Valley Trailhead (9,185 ft). The shin splints were painful, but if I could hike without flexing my right ankle, the pain was minimal.

Hiking down the trail nearing the trailhead, it was quite a sight to come around a corner and see Liz coming up the trail with an empty backpack to help me carry the load the rest of the way down.

John Muir Trail
Departing Kearsarge Lake (view W towards JMT)

After lots of hugs, we hiked out and headed to Independence Town where we got a room at the Mt. Morrison Motel and Basecamp, a business that caters to backpackers. To stretch my ankle in the evening, we walked downtown to Jalisco Tacos for some great street food.

We relaxed, chatted with the neighbors, and lounged around for the evening. A real bed and a shower with hot water were treats, and it was nice to have Liz there.

John Muir Trail
Junction of Lower Kearsarge Pass and Kearsarge Lakes trails (view E)
John Muir Trail
Kearsarge Lake (view S back towards camp from junction)
John Muir Trail
Departing Kearsarge Lake (view S back towards camp)
John Muir TrailLooking into the sunrise (view E)
John Muir Trail
Switchbacking towards Kearsarge Pass (view NW)
John Muir Trail
Looking back towards JMT (view W)
John Muir Trail
Junction of Upper and Lower Kearsarge Pass trails (view E)
John Muir Trail
Sign at trail junction (view SW)
John Muir Trail
Climbing towards Kearsarge Pass (view E)
John Muir Trail
Switchbacking towards Kearsarge Pass (view W)
John Muir Trail
Switchbacking towards Kearsarge Pass (view E)
John Muir Trail
Approaching Kearsarge Pass (view W)
John Muir Trail
Kearsarge Pass (view E)
John Muir Trail
Kearsarge Pass (view W)
John Muir Trail
Kearsarge Pass sign (view SW)
John Muir Trail
Selfie atop Kearsarge Pass (view W)
John Muir Trail
Kearsarge Lakes Basin (view SW)
John Muir Trail
Kearsarge Lakes Basin (view W)
John Muir Trail
Descending over Kearsarge Pass (view SW)
John Muir Trail
Switchbacking below Kearsarge Pass (view E)
John Muir Trail
Crossing high, barren hillsides (view W)
John Muir Trail
Grand views from above cliffy section of trail (view SE)
John Muir Trail
Cliffy section of trail (view S)
John Muir Trail
Art in the wilderness (view SE)
John Muir Trail John Muir Trail
John Muir Trail
Approaching Gilbert Lake (view E)
John Muir Trail
Gilbert Lake (view W)
John Muir Trail
Gilbert Lake (view S)
John Muir Trail
Soaking my shin in Gilbert Lake
John Muir Trail
Trout in Gilbert Lake
John Muir Trail
Starting onto steep hillsides below Gilbert Lake (view E)
John Muir Trail
Crossing rocky hillsides below Gilbert Lake (view E)
John Muir Trail
Switchbacking down steep hillside (view N)
John Muir Trail
Descending towards Little Pothole Lake (view S)
John Muir Trail
First view of the highway (view E)
John Muir Trail
Bush Chinquapin (Chrysolepis sempervirens)
John Muir Trail
Bush Chinquapin (Chrysolepis sempervirens)
John Muir Trail
Switchbacking steep hillside on gentle trail (view N)
John Muir Trail
Alpine meadow (view SE)
John Muir Trail
Looking back towards Gilbert Lake (view W)
John Muir Trail
Descending gentle trail (view NE)
John Muir Trail
Switchbacking down (view W)
John Muir Trail
Approaching John Muir Wilderness boundary (view NE)
John Muir Trail
Selfie at John Muir Wilderness boundary sign (view SW)
John Muir Trail
Descending into Sagebrush country (view N)
John Muir Trail
Trail junction to Golden Trout Lakes (view N)
John Muir Trail
Golden Trout Lakes junction sign (view NW)
John Muir TrailApproaching another trail sign (view S) John Muir Trail
Trail sign (view W)
John Muir Trail
Descending through heavy forest (view SE)
John Muir Trail
Trailhead parking comes into view (view SE)
John Muir Trail
Look who's coming up the trail! (view S)
John Muir Trail
Liz helping carry my gear down the trail (view SW)
John Muir Trail
Liz approaching the trailhead (view E)
John Muir Trail
Jim at the trailhead (view NW)
John Muir Trail
Trailhead signs (view N)
John Muir Trail
Trailhead signs (view N)
John Muir Trail
Trailhead signs (view N)
John Muir Trail
Trash cans and food storage lockers at trailhead (view NE)
John Muir Trail
Trailhead sign (view W)
John Muir Trail
Jim at trailhead sign (view W)
John Muir Trail
Trailhead parking and signs (view N)
John Muir Trail
Departing the trailhead; my quest ends early (view W)
John Muir Trail
Mt. Williamson Motel sign along Highway 395 (view S)
John Muir Trail
Mt. Williamson Motel logo
John Muir Trail
Mt. Williamson Motel sign along Highway 395 (view S)
John Muir Trail
Little visitor on the door step (sagebrush lizard)
John Muir Trail
Mt. Williamson Motel room sign
John Muir Trail
Mt. Williamson Motel room sign
John Muir Trail
Mt. Williamson Motel room sign
backpacking
More to come ...

Note: All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 170207

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