Set in the High Sierras of California, the John Muir Trail boasts some of the most pristine wilderness in the United States.
A quick ascent from the famous Yosemite Valley, this 210-mile hike through flora-filled meadows and across rugged mountains ends with a sunrise ascent to the highest summit in the contiguous United States, Mt. Whitney.
Following the footsteps of America's most famous environmentalist through the pristine wilderness of the Sierra Nevada, every step is filled with more jaw-dropping beauty than the last. Over the past summer, a dedicated member of the Aether team braved the trip, took some shots, and enjoyed a few MiiR products along the way.
The 5 reasons to hike the John Muir Trail
From the field notes of Clifford Niles
Stepping out of the routine of everyday life, and diving right into the elements.
Once you ditch the items you don't need and get out of Yosemite valley, you are really out there.
Meeting like minded folks out on the trail.
We ran into folks aged 8 to eighty. Some people we ran into had been coming to Sierras every summer for decades and were overflowing with knowledge on the surrounding areas. Others were hitting the trail for the first time and loving every moment of it.
Hitting the tops of passes. Once we were in synch, we hit 1-2 passes every day. Once you are at the top you can look south and see what lies ahead, and then look north to see how far you have come. The views were truly mind-boggling.
Being in the best shape of my life. I wanted to just keep walking once I was done, and felt great for months after the trip.
Swimming every day! Crystal clear lakes are around almost every corner. There are rocks to jump off and let's be honest after a long day of hiking it really helps to be able to clean up.
Story and Images courtesy of Clifford Niles and Aether