11 Sep Day 143 – Sonora and Kennedy Meadows North
At mile 1016.9. Hiked 14.5 miles today.
Last night I camped at Walker River on a site near the footbridge. After a short climb up a canyon, the landscape changed to a high open volcanic expanse. It became windy and cool.
Working my way up to higher and more exposed elevations.
I continue to climb. This is an exciting difference to what I had seen on elsewhere on the PCT.
Barren volcanic views. Only a few spots where low and bent White Bark Pines grew.
I made my way up to the notch seen on the right side of this photo. I’m guessing the approach near the notch was where early hikers needed their Ice Axes. Even without ice, I stepped carefully to avoid sliding on sandy soil and over a precipice.
Closer look at the notch.
Other side with some Nor’east facing snow patch.
By midday I reached Sonora Pass where I hitched a ride to North Kennedy Meadow Guest Ranch in time for a hot Roast Beef aus Jus sandwich and fries. I stayed at the bunkhouse with shower and laundry included and I shopped the well supplied store for my very last resupply all of the way to Echo Lake & Chalet, 75 miles away. I enjoyed looking out the window of the bunkhouse to the corral where it seemed 50 horses and mules were kept. This is a big packing operation. I’d love to go backcountry on horseback with a mule in tow. These packers are cool cowboy types and seem to be tough and hard working. KM-North has reasonable prices and is a great stop.
People: I met Golden at KM Ranch. He is 60 something and is also NOBO Thru-hiker. He is back doing a skipped section. He finishes at Sierra City, 100 miles north of where I finish and seemed to be having more of a struggle on this last leg of his hike with sore feet. I wish him well.