5/27 – Day 50 – Bishop Pass

I woke up late, as I planned, as yesterday’s off trail excursion was extremely taxing. My body hurts all over. I am super skinny. I don’t want to do this anymore. At least my deer friends are still hanging out with me keeping me company. I made pancakes, with blueberries and brown sugar.

I was warned that Muir Pass, the next pass on the PCT, was still too dangerous to attempt. I had already risked my life twice in the last three days. There was even a hand-written sign at the junction of the PCT and Bishop Pass trail, the last junction before Muir Pass, warning not to try it.

The hike up from 8700 feet to 12,000 feet Bishop Pass was very difficult. The first several miles were steep switchbacks, and I moved slowly. The views were incredible which helped keep my mind from my sore body. The trail leveled off in the incredibly beautiful Dusy Basin. I stopped by a lake and ate my large bag of trail mix very quickly. I seemed to be starving, no kidding. I soon continued up to Bishop Pass.

Unfortunately, the snow soon covered the trail and finding my way became difficult. I back tracked several times, and consulted the map to make sure I did not go the wrong way like yesterday. I reached the pass and soon headed down through the snow and rock, often losing the trail. It became super steep, I was in a tight, steep switch back section that once again required cutting the very steep hard snow-covered switchbacks by vertically climbing down rock. I finally reached the bottom of the head wall, and quickly ate some lunch. The weather was turning nasty, looking like it would snow soon.

I continued hiking down, often through snow, to get to Southlake were I hoped to get a ride to Bishop. I soon met a day hiker, out of Southlake, Zinger, who agreed to give me a ride to Bishop, but he said he was going to hike to the top of the pass and meet me in the parking lot if I did not get a ride by the time he returned. I warned him that getting up there was hard. Anyway I hiked on down, and still encountered many large snow patches.  And guess what, I got lost again.  Weather was also moving in.  I soon realized l was at a lake that was not on the trail down to the the parking lot at Southlake, so I turned around and miraculously met up with Zinger at the junction where I went wrong.  He wisely did not attempt the pass.  We hiked to the parking lot together and he gave me a ride to Bishop. That was lucky for me, and especially lucky given it was obviously snowing back up at the pass.

Zinger gave me a ride to the Comfort Inn in the gorgeous green oasis of Bishop.If you are ever in the Bishop area take a day hike out of Southlake. Really awesome scenery, and if you fish, I saw many trout jumping in the little lakes.

My feet are messed up again.  With so much snow and water hiking, my feet always wet.