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Great weather and great scenery as we complete our 12th day on the John Muir Trail in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California. Today was easy, just six miles, including descending the Golden Staircase to the middle fork of the Kings River junction.

Over the past week I haven’t been sore apart from bad splits in skin on hands and fingertips from the dry air. We are carrying around 15kg though with food and water and group gear (stoves and gas) and one day when I was carrying two full gas canisters it just felt like the weight was too much. I had to give one of them to our guide Paul in order to comfortably get over the pass.

It is definitely a hugely challenging hike with so many high passes but the scenery is incredible, a vast glaciated granite wilderness.

Today I saw my first Pika – they are like a large round fat mouse with rabbit ears and no tail – very cute. We’ve also seen lots of marmots – they are the largest rodent in the world and are big fat furry creatures that sunbathe on the rocks and of course deer everywhere that wander through our camps. We haven’t seen coyotes or bears although they are around.

 
Day11: Mather Pass lies straight ahead. So, we just need to get over it.

Day11: Mather Pass lies straight ahead. So, we just need to get over it. 🙂