PCT Day 167 – Wednesday, September 27
Mile 915.9 to Lyell Fork Creek Mile 931.2
PCT Miles Hiked Today: 15.4
Total PCT Miles Hiked: 1801.5
Feet Ascended Today: 3796
Feet Descended Today: 2340
Current Elevation: 10203
It was cold when I awoke this morning – another night below freezing. I packed up as quickly as possible as I wanted to make it over both Island and Donahue Passes today.
Around 11:00 am I came to Thousand Island Lake, a lovely area with alpine lakes framed by snow-capped peaks. The JMT rejoins the PCT at this location.
I hiked another 2 miles uphill and crossed Island Pass, which was by far the easiest pass that I’ve crossed so far. From there the trail dipped 1000 feet in elevation to Davis Creek, and then climbed up another 1500 feet in elevation to cross Donahue Pass (11074 feet).
I had heard from some southbound hikers that Donahue Pass was “waist-deep in snow” thanks to the recent snowfall, but it wasn’t that bad. Clearly much of the snow had melted by the time I crossed the Pass.
At the top of the pass I crossed over the boundary from Ansel Adams Wilderness to Yosemite National Park. I was pretty excited as I’ve always wanted to go to Yosemite.
When I made it over Donahue it was 5:00 pm, so I hurriedly continued down the other side. The path had more snow on the north side of the pass, so I had to take care not to slip on frozen snow and I even lost the trail a few times which slowed me down.
I eventually camped at one of the crossings over Lyell Fork. I was still at an elevation of over 10,000 feet, but it was getting late and I was tired. It was going to be another cold night.