Today is a short day in terms of milage and I am not sure what the lay of the land will be and how far I will hike. Mh intent is to get as close as I can to Forester Pass. I pack up quickly this morning, say thank you to my wonderful home for 2 nights and enjoy my walk down to the trail junction at Vidette Meadow. On the way a beautiful vista opens up that shows me where I am headed.
Lots of hikers have camped in this area for the night, either coming from their resupply and heading in my direction or coming from other trails or up from the South. There is a general business in the air of getting ready for a final push or reorganizing after a long tough day. Lots of repacking, chatter and gear spread out on every campsite. I am so glad I had my private site in such a beautiful spot last night. I pass them and stop often near the creek to enjoy the morning. I try and gather information about camp sites further up the trail and a few hikers are able to give me great details. Right among the very last trees before starting the final ascent to Forester Pass are nice campsites and water. That's where I am headed. The trail is nice and it is getting hot and I know I will get to my site early today.
When I find it it is better than I imagined. Another high alpine meadow with streams and little lakes and boulders to sit on and great trees to put my tent under. And the Pass is within view. I am the first on at the site and put up my tent, cook lunch and explore. I dip into the stream and lie on a large rock, looking at the sky and the mountains for hours. When I return some old friends I met at Evolution Lake have put up a tent near me and we rejoice at the reunion. A mid 70s Japanese female solo hiker joins us and we have a lovely chat. After some human contact, I wander off again and enjoy the evening by myself, seeing an eagle fly up high in the sky. I go to bed early, feeling excited and ready for the highest pass so far and the last one before Whitney.