Daily Miles: 18
Total Miles: 159
It rained off and on last night, but luckily by the time our alarms went off, the rain had stopped. We still managed to get soaked for most of the morning with all the wet plants lining the trail.
The morning started off by finishing a climb to a ridge that we had camped partway up last night. The view at the top of the ridge was so great and we felt like it was going to be a good day…the grey clouds were breaking up and the views of the rocky mountains around us was beautiful. We walked along the ridge for awhile and finally had to tear ourselves away from the view and start hiking down into the woods.
Even though this trail is really tough and at times frustrating, the scenery we encounter each day is spectacular. We consider the Sierra Nevada Mountains to be the gold standard for beauty in nature, and what we have seen so far is equally stunning.
After lunch, we passed the only trail register we have seen on the trail so far. We didn’t look through it long, but we noticed that the closest GDT hiker in front of us is two days ahead. We haven’t seen Gigs since we had dinner with him in Coleman. He could be an hour behind us or a day behind us…we just can’t know.
The goal for today was to get up and over Fording River Pass. We climbed over and down one ridge in between before starting our ascent up the pass. We were pleasantly surprised that the trail up to the pass wasn’t too steep. It was actually quite nice, with a variety of landscapes. We started in the thick forest, then entered a barren and rocky section, and finally came to meadows full of wildflowers at the top of the pass. We stopped and took a break at the top, just admiring the beauty and feeling lucky to have it all to ourselves.
The descent was much nicer than we had anticipated after looking at the elevation profile. Part of it was descending through a meadow and part was on a rocky road. We finally found a pretty nice spot for us to camp around 6:30pm and called it a day.
Tomorrow looks to be a pretty easy day on the trail with a fair amount of dirt road walking. We are all actually looking forward to the easy walking, since Mace’s feet and Beardoh’s knee are still not doing good.