After summiting Whitney we’d hoped to hike the 7-8 miles to the Base of Forester Pass that afternoon so that we could cross the pass early morning whole the snow pack was still firm. In practice I was exhausted and managed little more than to make dinner and return to the tent to sleep. When we did set off the following day I was glad of the extra rest. Although beautiful, the hike up to Forester Pass was inevitably harder than we’d envisaged and climbed relentlessly uphill, crossing three rivers.
The high basin prior to the final climb was beautiful, if still mostly frozen. We reached the pass at 3pm and the hot sun had softened the hard snow pack considerably. The switchbacks leading up to the pass were still snow covered and it was a slow climb to the crest of the pass.
We’d prepared ourselves for a windy summit but in the event it was beautifully still and sunny. The snow on the north side was significantly greater but still just firm enough to make our passage safe. We plunged through knee deep in places but although slow the climb down was not unpleasant.
Although we didn’t get far beyond the pass the lake at the foot of the pass was a beautiful campsite with a near full moon and gurgling streams either side of us. The moon reflecting on the steep craggy walls around us gave a sense that our camp was cradled in the mountains.
Having taken longer to do the section than expected we needed to go out to town to resupply. We also had to make a decision regarding Lisa’s foot. It had been getting steadily worse despite the previous time out. The hike out from the PCT took us over Kearsage Pass, another big climb but snow-free this time. After a short wait at the trailhead we got a hitch down to the highway and eventually a second hitch into the town of Bishop where we would need to consider our next steps.