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Re: Trail Ideas

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Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 08:54AM
I normally don't ask for trail suggestions on here but i need some expert advice. I normally backpack alone, but i am leaving this friday for a trip with a friend and his 13 year old son. We have three days maybe a 4th to backpack. I was planning on starting us out at Lyell canyon and make it an easy first day. From there what would you suggest. Is there a nice way back to the valley from there, or maybe a loop to the west and back i think its raffferty creek. I have never been in lyell canyon, i tend to go to more "empty" trails. Thanks for your guys help.
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 12:15PM
Quote
Roadrash
I normally don't ask for trail suggestions on here but i need some expert advice. I normally backpack alone, but i am leaving this friday for a trip with a friend and his 13 year old son. We have three days maybe a 4th to backpack. I was planning on starting us out at Lyell canyon and make it an easy first day. From there what would you suggest. Is there a nice way back to the valley from there, or maybe a loop to the west and back i think its raffferty creek. I have never been in lyell canyon, i tend to go to more "empty" trails. Thanks for your guys help.


Starting out at the Dog Lake parking lot, the Lyell-Vogelsang-Raffery loop is about 19 mi. with a 2.0k elevation gain at Vogelsang. If you go down to Happy Isles in the valley from Vogelsang, the trip would be about 28 mi. with a 2.0k elevation gain and a 6.6k elevation loss.

What do you think your friends are capable of? Have they been backpacking before? Especially if they haven't, I would recommend the shorter loop hike and, depending on how it goes timewise, consider the option of doing a day hike out of the Vogelsang area over to either Emeric or Bernice lakes. You don't want to turn them off from backpacking by driving them too hard on a first trip.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/19/2009 12:28PM by szalkowski.
Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 12:51PM
Okay, so that helps. The valley might be too much for them in three days. Is there water the whole way lyell-vogelsang, rafferty route. I think that sounds more dooable with them. How nice is Lyell Canyon, could you spend three days exploring them and going the whole eight miles back. I am used to hikes out of the valley, hetch hetchy, pretty much everywhere except this stretch. The both of them are pretty hard charges. Although, i want to make sure for the the 13 year old there is always a source for water, either for drinking or taking a swim. Besides the question if there is water through the whole route, is that a pretty stretch through volgelsang, how are the mosquitos, I hate seeing the same scenery twice so that is sounding good.
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 01:47PM
Quote
Roadrash
Okay, so that helps. The valley might be too much for them in three days. Is there water the whole way lyell-vogelsang, rafferty route. I think that sounds more dooable with them. How nice is Lyell Canyon, could you spend three days exploring them and going the whole eight miles back. I am used to hikes out of the valley, hetch hetchy, pretty much everywhere except this stretch. The both of them are pretty hard charges. Although, i want to make sure for the the 13 year old there is always a source for water, either for drinking or taking a swim. Besides the question if there is water through the whole route, is that a pretty stretch through volgelsang, how are the mosquitos, I hate seeing the same scenery twice so that is sounding good.


Day 1:
Six miles from the parking lot trailhead, there is a trail intersection that will take you up toward Vogelsang. There is a nice camping spot on the right-hand side about 200-300 ft. E of that intersection. Depending on how early a start you get and/or how wiped out your friends are (the trail up Lyell is basically flat), you can set up camp there and then explore further upriver.
Day 2:
Another 5.5 miles (and 2.0k elevation gain) will get you to the east end of Fletcher Lake. As soon as you get there, go perpendicular to the trail off to the right (N); there is a nice camping spot on a tree-covered rise about 500 ft. off the trail. You can't camp between the trail and the lake and you don't want to camp any closer to the HSC or its so-called backpacker's campground out in the meadow.
Day 3/4:
If you have four days, do the day hike over to Emeric or Bernice that I mentioned earlier. (If you head toward Emeric, there are two pseudo- parallel trails so you can do a loop if you wish.) Otherwise, its all downhill back to Tuolumne.

You will have no problem with H2O. Rafferty generally dries up later in the season, but you shouldn't have any problems now; at any rate, just top off before you leave Vogelsang (2 liters each will be more than adequate). Insects... I've seen Biblical Swarms (think black clouds) of them around the lakes and in the meadows early in the year (especially Evelyn, which nicely combines both in a neat little package). Another reason for camping under shade trees. Pretty? No... jaw-dropping beautiful. My personal opinion is that the NE quadrant is the most beautiful part of YNP.
Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 01:57PM
Thanks that was more then i expected. I can't wait now, i think i will take your advice and go that route. Very thankful for your tips, Thanks
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 07:14PM
If you go up Lyell (good luck getting a permit) IMO it's a shame if you don't check out the glaciers.
You could easily spend 3 days getting there and back and goofing (checking out glacier... donahue...).
I tell people that you don't see the same stuff on an out and back unless you are walking backwards
one of the times.

What are the "empty" trails out of the valley? (this is a rhetorical question)
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 08:42PM
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bill-e-g
What are the "empty" trails out of the valley?

Indian Canyon in winter?

Quote

(this is a rhetorical question)

I know; I just don't care.
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 09:01PM
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eeek
Indian Canyon in winter?

Argh... I'm still irritated that I got rained out on this baby!
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 02:01PM
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bill-e-g
If you go up Lyell (good luck getting a permit)

What do you think the chances of getting a permit for this if I am at there noon the day before?

Oh yeah it would be for Saturday Aug 1st
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 02:33PM
Noon the day before you have a chance but no sure thing this time of year.



Old Dude
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 02:40PM
Quote
Dan-O
Quote
bill-e-g
If you go up Lyell (good luck getting a permit)

What do you think the chances of getting a permit for this if I am at there noon the day before?

Oh yeah it would be for Saturday Aug 1st


Better still, try to be there by 11 AM since that is when they start issuing walk-in permits for the next day.
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 07:59PM
I currently have a permit for Rafferty Creek, but I want to change my route to go up Lyell. If I am unable to get such permit change......what kind of trouble would I get in if a ranger happens to card me and im on/camping the wrong trail?

Hypothetically speaking of course!
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 08:06PM
With a very few exceptions the permit is for the trailhead. While Rafferty and Lyell have separate quotas, I doubt you'd be in any trouble.
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 08:55PM
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eeek
With a very few exceptions the permit is for the trailhead.

What are the exceptions?
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 09:22PM
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bill-e-g
Quote
eeek
With a very few exceptions the permit is for the trailhead.

What are the exceptions?

Little Yosemite Valley for one.
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 09:27PM
HUH!?

That would be:
Happy Isles->LYV
or
Glacier Point->LYV

????
Any other TH... no can go there on first day.
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 08:54PM
Hypothetically the ranger will eat your Twinkie stash.

Have you been up Rafferty already? If it's only you I'd bet on Friday early you'd get the next day permit for Lyell.
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 09:41PM
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bill-e-g
Have you been up Rafferty already?

Going to take that on our return to TM.
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 09:50PM
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Dan-O
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bill-e-g
Have you been up Rafferty already?

Going to take that on our return to TM.

I'd recommend going up Rafferty as with your original permit.
Last year I was continually "walking backwards" to look at Vogelsang area
hiking out to TM.
Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 08:39PM
Sorry, the "empty trails" were kind of an inside joke to myself. I have three kids age 1 month, 3 years, and 4 years. I don't get away alot alone. Anything without my kids to me is empty (no fussing, crying, etc) Normally the trails I backpack are some trails in the Bay Area about ten miles from my house in the Sunol Wilderness. Hence the Empty trails. I can backpack those sometimes and never see a soul. On the other hand i was joking about the 'Empty trails' because most of the time the trails i get to in yosemite are like a highway' halfdome' etc. that is far from empty. Don't know if that makes sense, i didn't realize i wrote that until you said somthing and i reviewed my post. I have ridden my motorcycle to yosemite about 5 times at year, after i found the park 7 years ago. I never was raised or grew up outside. Now at age 31, i found backpacking two years ago. I managed to make it to yellowstone last year and started exploring yosemite 2 years ago backpacking. I have a goal of hiking every trail in yosemite. I have a lust for the park that is hard to explain. All of my hikes have started from the valley floor, but i have pretty much accomplished what i wanted there. I am now starting to explorer other areas. I thought Lyell would be a good spot to start, expecially with my buddy bringing his son. I tried to take my oldest there last year, but he is still much too young. Okay, so that was alot of information, but now i introduced myself and answered your question. I didn't think about the glaciers. Maybe i will leave them parked one of the days and venture off by myself. Thanks for the idea.
Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 08:42PM
That last line of yours was friggin funny, I am still laughing. I guess that is true.

" I tell people that you don't see the same stuff on an out and back unless you are walking backwards
one of the times."
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 08:59PM
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Roadrash
I have a goal of hiking every trail in yosemite. I have a lust for the park that is hard to explain.

You don't have to explain it. Believe me.
And that's a good goal to have. (I'm still not 100% done...)

Don't get dissuaded by the number of people. It's easier to get away from them than you may think.
Especially if you go solo. In some spots you have to deal with the crowds. But it's a BIG park.

Sunol. Ohlone Wilderness?
Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 09:09PM
Yeah Ohlone wilderness, up and down ugly ass hills, but hey, it is close.
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 19, 2009 09:20PM
Only been there once. Dayhike from Del Valle to Sunol via Rose Peak.
Just like Henry Coe. Cool Grape Goodness
smiling smiley
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 20, 2009 12:21PM
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Roadrash
Yeah Ohlone wilderness, up and down ugly ass hills, but hey, it is close.


I was working up in the South Bay between 2002 and 2005 and had a P.O. Box in Sunol so I could have an excuse to get out that way a couple times a week (Sunol reminded me of the Silverado area here where I live in Orange County). I was residing in Union City and was literally just down the street from Coyote Hills RP. If you haven't gone out there, give it a go... decent hiking and great bay views.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/20/2009 12:44PM by szalkowski.
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 21, 2009 02:18PM
Roadrash,
btw... Len's idea was solid. If you do so happen to go that way you should take the kid up
to Hanging Basket. I would think he'd get a kick outta that. Climbing up the boulders...
Re: Trail Ideas
July 21, 2009 02:50PM
Copy that on hanging basket, in regards to the lakes, which lake is nicer Emeric or Bernice??? I just finished packing and my pack weighs 38 pounds. I think my kids through some freeweights in there. I am going to have to pull everything out and redo it. I think i packed too much heavy food, 38 pounds isn't going to work, i haven't even accounted for my water. I need to learn to sleep on the ground like Muir with no tent, no pad. It stresses me out, everytime i pack
avatar Re: Trail Ideas
July 21, 2009 03:00PM
You'll have some incredible wow moments if you go to Bernice.
But for your trip I personally would not recommend you do that unless you have 1 full day to goof.
Go up to Vogelsang Pass and check out the view tho. You'll see Gallison and Bernice.
(and go "cool"winking smiley
Emeric has some nice meadows and domes.

Sooo... up to Hanging Basket. Up Vogelsang Pass. Over to Emeric.

And I likey granite. Alot... But I need a pad. smiling smiley
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