The trail initially climbs along Yosemite creek and through some beautiful rock work.
Views along the first ~1 mile of trail.
At times the trail crosses open granite and is marked with small rocks and cairns.
Looking towards ten lakes pass.
And the view towards Mt Hoffman.
The trail climbs through shaded pine forest for a couple of miles before the final climb to Ten Lakes Pass. The pass is just beyond those trees...
Typical trail through here....
Half Moon Meadow.
The flat stretch before the final climb to Ten Lakes Pass
Interesting patterns in the rock...
Looking back on the meadow and I get a glimpse of the Forbidden Fire (lightning caused) in the distance.
At the top of the climb you come out into this nice green meadowy field. It feels like the pass but nope, it veers to the right and climbs a little bit more.
The 'false pass'
Barkin and Emily just ahead of me at the pass.
Ten Lakes Pass is one of my favorite passes simply due to the experience of cresting the pass after hiking through miles of trees only to see this incredible view of Northern Yosemite.
Ten Lakes Pass
Mt Conness from Ten Lakes Pass
View from Ten Lakes Pass (see end of album for labeled peaks)
So, it was really hot out. I found a perfect cooling solution. Step 1: make a snowball (there were still a few small snow fields near the pass).
Step two: Grab your Columbia Omnifreeze Zero Neck Gaiter.
Step 3: Put snowball in neck gaiter.
Hang snowball around neck like necklace. Let it melt cool refreshing goodness as you hike.
Trying out a new pack on this trip (Osprey Aura 65)- verdict: quite comfy. On Monday neither my hips or shoulders could tell they had carried ~25 lbs all weekend.
Descending from the pass, I spotted a local keeping an eye on me.
He watched me carefully...silly marmot.
Eventually I see a few of the Ten Lakes.
Descending into Ten Lakes Basin
At the first of the Ten Lakes. There were not many people out here this weekend - rangers told us the lakes were still iced over and there would be a bunch of snow back here. I have a feeling that discouraged most folks from booking permits.
In fact, the lake was warm enough for swimming (seriously, I know sierra cold lakes and this was very tame by those standards, especially considering it's the first week of June)
David caught dinner, too!
We had a camp visitor - the marmot was pretty fat considering he probably only recently came out of hibernation. He circled camp a few times to see if we were careless enough to leave food out. Sorry, big guy, we keep a clean camp. Better luck next time.
We had a nice campsite and fire. The fire wasn't needed for warmth, but it sure was nice for cooking up the fishies!
Another critter came by to spy on us.