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Re: Matthes Lake Backpack

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avatar Matthes Lake Backpack
July 07, 2015 08:02PM
I hiked over Nelson Pass and spent two nights camped at Matthes Lake last weekend, with the "in-between" day spent day-hiking on the hills south of Matthes, swimming in Matthes, etc. On Friday there were two other parties there, on Saturday I had the lake to myself.

I spent Thursday night camping at Tuolumne Meadows, where the mosquitoes were generally not bad at all. Their numbers picked up dramatically around Elizabeth Lake...generally, above 9,500 ft. or so they're still pretty bad, below they're only bad in favored areas (e.g.: the small creek just west of the Tuolumne Meadows campground).

Elizabeth Lake:



By the time I got to Nelson Pass on Friday the clouds were building up over the Sierra Crest. Nonetheless, Friday was quite dry for me.



Echo Creek Valley:



I alluded to this in responses to other posts about water availability...while the large numbers of wildflowers one might normally expect aren't present, selected areas have quite impressive displays. I suspect the monsoon flow that the Sierra has seen for a while has helped here:



The bottom of the climb from Echo Creek to Matthes Lake (not counting the 15-foot scramble needed to get here):



The Nelson Lake basin from that climb:



Penstimmon and paintbrush on the climb:



Morning mist, Matthes Lake:



A more classic view of the lake:



The other time I went here I hiked around the ridge separating Matthes and Echo Lakes, this time I hiked over, and from the top hiked south to the "10040+" peaklet. I think this saves absolutely no time over hiking around, but the views are well worth it!

Echo Lake:



and the Clark Range:



A closer-in view of Echo Lake from the descent:

avatar Re: Matthes Lake Backpack
July 08, 2015 09:52AM
nice

tanks fur sharon

the little nibbicle... is worth going up as u said.. and from there u can get close to the crest...
a la...


kinda neat when get back down to Echo Lake to see where u were

Have fun Mr. Tom



Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Matthes Lake Backpack
July 08, 2015 12:47PM
Awesome - Inspiring me to get into that area! Thank you for the photos and the report.
avatar Re: Matthes Lake Backpack
July 08, 2015 01:35PM
Goodness, those pictures are beautiful (especially Echo Creek valley). A question, though, for those of us who haven't really gotten around to exploring much of the backcountry: where the heck is Nelson Pass? I'm doing my best to procrastinate and trace your hike on closedcontour/mappingsupport, but it's not listed on any of those maps. I'm assuming it's the area between Elizabeth Lake and the northernmost part of Echo Creek valley?
avatar Re: Matthes Lake Backpack
July 08, 2015 03:27PM
avatar Re: Matthes Lake Backpack
July 09, 2015 02:32PM
Cool to see those views of Echo Lake. Thanks for posting.
avatar Re: Matthes Lake Backpack
July 09, 2015 02:41PM
Nice! That is still one of my favorite areas of the park!
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