68 miles hike at Ansel Adams Wilderness - Day 3
Additional days Blog Posts:
Start: Ediza Lake, Ansel Adams Wilderness
End: Davis Lakes, Ansel Adams Wilderness
Statistics: 16 miles, +4020ft / -3360ft
6am early morning wake up, it was still half dark but I went to the other side of the lake to take some sunrise pictures. As the sun went up it start to light the mountain peaks and slowly going down to the lake below. The panoramic view was amazing.
We packed all our stuff into the backpacks and hike to the nearby trail junction.
We want to take a side-trip, hike up and back to Iceberg Lake, so we stash our backpacks near the trail junction and hike without all the weight up the trail. Additional one mile climbing brought us to Iceberg Lake.
From here we took an un-maintained but clear trail start to climb the mountain on the left side of the lake. After 0.6 mile of climbing on a relatively decent trail we went straight up in a narrow gorge. This was an extremely steep bolder sloop climbing section, after half an hour of difficult climb we arrived to Cecile Lake.
The small Cecile Lake is nested right on the top of the mountain ridge, nested below the cliffs of the peaks on both sides.
We gave ourselves a few minutes to relax and enjoy the view and soon after we start our way down.
It was even more difficult and slightly dangerous to take the same way down, the rocks were unstable creating mini landslides, it took us a lot of time to go back down.
Later we saw another less challenging way that climb up (no need to take the gorge section), for next time we will take this easier and safer rout 😊
We hiked back all the way down to the trail junction near Ediza Lake and took our hidden backpacks.
On our way down we saw a team of forest rangers with volunteers that build a new wooden bridge crossing the river and other group that are doing boulders trail maintenance.
I think that as part of the wilderness regulations even the maintenance crew can’t use any motorized mechanical tools, so they need to cut the huge tree trunk with two man Crosscut Saw, looks like a hard “old school” labor.
Later we asked another group about their work routine, they told us that they usually spend 2 weeks working in the wilderness and in between getting one week off.
We keep hiking down the trail near the stream up to the junction with John Muir Trail, at this junction we turned left (north) and start our hike on the JMT.
From the trail junction we hiked up the mountain and down to Garnet Lake (2.7 miles section).
The large Garnet Lake has many small islands that are covered with trees, where the Banker Peak Mountain is towering high up on the far west side of the lake, a picturesque view.
After Garnet Lake we keep heading north on the JMT, climbing another mountain range, and arriving on the other side to Thousand Island Lake.
It was still relatively early (around 4pm), and we hiked until now only 12 miles, so we decided not to stay for the night here but to keep going north (+ many campers do stay here for the night, and they can probably enjoy the morning sunrise view).
From Thousand Island Lake heading north the JMT trail is connect to the PCT trail, we will hike this trail the way back to Yosemite.
After additional of almost 3 miles and another mountain range crossing, we arrived the trail junction that will take us to Davis Lakes. Additional 0.8-mile-long side trail up the stream brought us to Davis Lakes. Two lakes nested at the shadow of mount Davis (12,310ft).
As we preferred it, no one else except us was here for the night.
The view was amazing, small pools of water, no wind, perfect reflection and amazing sunset light, perfect way to finish the day.
More picture from the same day: