2016 Mt Gibbs

Description: Dayhike to Mt Gibbs summit from the Mono Pass/Parker Pass trailhead along Tioga Road

12,773' Mt Gibbs does not receive as many visitors as its neighbor, Mt Dana. Perhaps because it is only the 6th highest peak in Yosemite, 284’ below Mt Dana, which is the 2nd highest peak. It is also a few miles further from the trailhead. In any case, all the better for me, as I prefer the solitude and was the only one on the mountain today in early June. In fact, the last register entry was almost 3 weeks ago.

Based on photos of a snow-covered Mt Dana from just a week ago, I had intended to bring snowshoes. But after seeing the bare-top mountain from Tioga Road, I decided to just carry the microspikes.

Lulled by recent drought years, I did not anticipate the early season stream crossings and was surprised to see Dana Fork flowing so fast and high. I had no choice but to wade across the first crossing and found a broken log upstream for the second crossing.

I left the trail about a mile in and started up the ridge towards Mt Gibbs. This section was forested with patches of snow that got denser as I ascended. Microspikes were useful here. After exiting the forest above treeline, the first false summit is visible. When this is reached, there is still another ~1400’ to go and another summit (false) is visible. From this second false summit, the true summit is still +900’ higher. This can be demoralizing, but for me, the false summits were milestone achievements.

First false summit ahead

Second false summit ahead

Finally, the true summit ahead

Kuna Crest, seen from the second false summit

From the summit, Cathedral range is visible behind Kuna Crest

Mt Dana on the right and the second false summit below to the left

Mt Gibbs register location

Water flowing over previous log crossing, still the best option for crossing back