Date: 20 May 2018 09:48PM PDT
Location: Camping near mile 786.1
Today's Miles: 19.1
Total Miles: 786.1
Lazy start this morning. Woke up relatively rested at 0600, but it was pretty frigid out so I curled back up and waited for the sun to properly rise and shine on the area I was tented in.
Once properly warmed up, I packed up for the day, hiking with a Swedish hiker aptly named Sunshine.
Big day today. Spent all day hiking up to Forester Pass, including a few fords and a bunch of snow. Post holing all over the place, a small group of hikers naturally formed to head over Forester together.
Feet were wet for the majority of the day, both from fording, and from all of the snow. Legs were pretty smoked from hiking up Whitney the day prior, and walking up hill for the majority of the day on top of snow wasn't helping.
Felt much anticipation about Forester, both due to the elevation of the pass and snow chute itself, and for me being so tired.
The approach to Forester was a mess. Snow all over the place, no trail in sight. We ended up climbing straight up the switchbacks that lead to the pass since there was so much snow we couldn't tell where the trail actually was.
The pass itself was OK. A few hikers had recently climbed the pass, and some proper steps were kicked into the path. It was still a scary moment being over 13,000 feet with nothing but a steep, slippery drop and nothing but slippery snow to walk on, but everyone made it safely across.
The walk down the northern slope was pea soup dog for miles. More snow all over the place, and couldn't see past my own hand. A bunch of footsteps on the snow walked away from where my map indicated the trail was supposed to be, but I went for it anyway and was rewarded.
Ended up hiking down the north side of the pass with another hiker who wasn't too good at map reading or navigation, but it worked out because I was able to tell him where to go and he led the way. Much post holing ensued until we made it down below tree line, stopping for the day at a campsite with a few other hikers we knew.
Set up my stuff, headed over to the fire circle. Everyone was pretty much soaked through from the snow and cold, so a fire was started and everyone was pretty happy after that.
Dried out my shoes and socks by the fire, ate dinner, off to the tent.
Nine miles of hiking off trail to get to town tomorrow. Probably end up spending the night after resupplying and getting a hot meal.