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Backpacking July

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Backpacking July
March 13, 2011 07:54PM
I originally was going to backpack in the middle of July, however, i then changed that because of another trip. I was going to just camp in toulumne meadows and dayhike the 2 places i had not yet been (Caththedral lakes, glen aulin). They have not opened the campground to reservations yet and as it gets closer, i am thinking i would much rather have the peace and quiet in the wilderness. The only places i have hiked up here are vogelsang and Lyell canyon. Question, i have about 3-4 days that i would like to backpack. in the middle of july, what are some recommendations from my experienced guides on here. Glen Aulin is still available, is this nice??? Cathedral lakes i always hear about, but its booked out. What are your recommendations, i am a strong hiker, and i’m hiking solo. Thanks
Re: Backpacking July
March 13, 2011 09:22PM
If i can swing 4 days, what is it like hiking to glen aulin then over to may lake, back south to sunrise, and then out by cathedral lakes, looking at some old maps i have, is that a reasonable distance in four days.
Re: Backpacking July
March 13, 2011 09:57PM
A couple of thoughts:

1. Yes, that's perfectly suitable itinerary---the High Sierra Camps were put where they are so that you can hike from one to the next in a single day. That's what you'll be doing. You'll probably get quite a few mosquitoes in July, but so what?

2. Bear in mind that those camps are pretty popular. You will see more people there than in most other backcountry locations in Yosemite

3. You can also get to Glen Aulin by going cross-country from Pot Hole Dome...it may actually be a nicer hike that the more popular trail from Tuolumne Meadows. .

4. A wilderness permit allows you to camp in a couple of different campgrounds the night before your backpacking trip. If you really want to score one of the "first come, first served" campsites in the park, a wilderness permit gives you a free night--and an early start to the campground of your choice to get a spot. Yes, it is gaming the system--but if you call the wilderness office and cancel your permit after you get a campsite, you'll let someone else use that same permit quota to go on the trip that you cancelled. And there are almost always a few backpacking permits for lesser known trailheads available.

(We found this out one year when we had a permit and my wife wasn't feeling great. We decided to bag the backpacking trip and just do day hikes in the park--but we didn't make that decision until the morning of our hiking permit. We ended up finding a great campsite...and turned in our permit. And we had four lovely days of dayhiking to North Dome, Gaylor Lakes, etc.)



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avatar Re: Backpacking July
March 14, 2011 08:05AM
Quote
Roadrash
If i can swing 4 days, what is it like hiking to glen aulin then over to may lake, back south to sunrise, and then out by cathedral lakes, looking at some old maps i have, is that a reasonable distance in four days.



Highly recommend that you avoid staying too close to any of the High Sierra Camps (HSCs). Population density-wise, staying at the HSC backpacker campgrounds is almost equivalent to staying in the valley.

Get a Glen Aulin Passthrough permit and either stay at the far end of Glen Aulin (California Fall area) or go up Cold Canyon a couple miles for the first night. For the other nights, choose a campsite at least a mile away from the HSCs.

Since your proposed itinerary would really entail exiting the wilderness (i.e., crossing the Tioga Road corridor), you may actually need a second permit for re-entering on the south side of the road.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/14/2011 08:10AM by szalkowski.
Re: Backpacking July
March 14, 2011 01:22PM
I've always wondered about the "crossing the road" bit.

The JMT crosses the road near TM and loops back and you don't need to get a second permit for TM if you leave from Happy Isles. Nor is a second permit required to do the HSC Loop.

I called the permit office last year and asked about crossing the road and was told that if you're simply crossing the road to continue your trip, and not using the road as a means of travel to another TH, you don't need a separate permit.

Unfortunately, I've never seen anything "in writing" about that.

Quote
szalkowski
Quote
Roadrash
Since your proposed itinerary would really entail exiting the wilderness (i.e., crossing the Tioga Road corridor), you may actually need a second permit for re-entering on the south side of the road.
avatar Re: Backpacking July
March 14, 2011 02:18PM
I would want to get that one in writing.

As for other suggestions, if Young Lakes is available you could spend one night there, proceed to Glen Aulin (California Falls) for a night, then go down the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne to Return Creek and back up and camp somewhere below McGee Lake on the Murphy Creek Trail, and exit via May Lake. Not sure whether you have 3 or 4 nights available but some variation of this is possible. An extra night could be spend at the May Lake backpacker's camp. Or, the extra night could be spent at the Tuolimne meadows backpacker's camp at the beginning of your trip. There should still be some pretty good water flowing in mid-July in the Canyon.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/14/2011 02:30PM by tomdisco.
Re: Backpacking July
March 14, 2011 04:57PM
I did ask this morning and they said i could cross the road and not need a second permit. However, if i am going to walk back to my car, or to the store to resupply etc etc,that would need another permit. Kind of hard to enforce, but i will take their word for it,i don't want to have to get another permit. I am leaning towards the glen aulin, may, sunrise route, however, taking your advice and staying away form the HSC. I have never stayed at the HSC, your right about it like valley camping last year i passed vogelsang and it was pretty packed. So what is every ones take on the weather conditions this year. I am shooting for mid july, do you think we will be hiking in decent ground by then. I really don't want to be snow camping or walking in mud all day.
Re: Backpacking July
March 26, 2011 11:29PM
From my experience, permits aren't enforce that strictly. I wouldn't worry too much, but that second permit is good just in case.
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