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Re: Occupy Clouds Rest

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Occupy Clouds Rest
October 17, 2011 10:18PM
This weekend, a favorite late-season hike: Clouds Rest from Tenaya Lake. For the first time that I can remember, it was a completely dry-shoes/no-snow hike. On the way up, I passed a group returning from catching sunrise on the summit (cold, but nice!). I had the summit to myself for about an hour before the other day hikers arrived. I spent most of the time just looking at the mountains all around, remembering past trips and dreaming about future ones. So much nicer than studying topo maps and Google Earth from home... Many of the other day hikers commented that, although they had done Half Dome, they liked the Clouds Rest hike better. It's certainly my favorite summit of the two.



Having done the Sunrise Trail countless times, on the way back I took a detour by Lower and Middle Sunrise Lakes, then headed basically north towards the Mildred Lake outlet, then turned northwest to hit the trail just south of the Tenaya Creek crossing. This route is mostly open, so the views are much better than those from the wooded trail. Along the way are a few nice streams with pretty pools and waterfalls. There were a few big Red Firs near the Mildred Lake outlet creek.



This, in a nutshell, is why I like the Sierra, and especially Yosemite--there is so much in those vast areas between the black dotted lines on the map that's just as nice--and in many cases nicer--than what's on the trails, and it's mostly easy to get to. You can take a trail that you've done a dozen times and find something new with just a little off-trail exploration.

More Pictures...
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 17, 2011 10:28PM
A place to be worshipped. Thanks for sharing the pics!
avatar Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 06:23AM
Tanks for Sharon.
(glad to see the website work took a day off wink )

Quote
basilbop
You can take a trail that you've done a dozen times and find something new with just a little off-trail exploration.

That's the true beauty of it imo. Things are not the same. Memories get skewed.
Even just staying on trail after a couple of years... it's a new experience. Especially at a different time of the year.



Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 09:09AM
Photo 5 is especially nice. I can't tell if those wispy clouds are a gazillion contrails or just wispy clouds. I hope it's just wispy clouds.....
avatar Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 11:12AM
Loved your photos and trip report. Thanks for sharing.
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 12:59PM
Very nice; glad you had a snow free adventure. I wanted to do CR earlier in the week. I called the Tuolumne Wilderness Office on Sunday of the previous week. (after the storm) I was told the ranger had to turn around due to snow and ice. On Tuesday, I decided on Upper Cathedral Lake, and still, 6 out of the 8 miles RT were across a snow covered trail. Now that CR is 100% clear, this week and maybe next seem like an ideal opportunity. Thanks for posting the pictures and providing the inspiration to return.



Gary Crabbe
Enlightened Images

"Nearness to Nature keeps the Spirit sensitive to impressions not commonly felt, and in touch with unseen powers." - Oyihesa; Santee Dakota indian, from his book, Soul of the Indian (1911)
avatar Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 03:53PM
Great report and pics. How long does this hike typically take? I want to do it next summer. Leave from Sunrise trailhead the best way?
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 05:50PM
Clouds Rest from the Sunrise trailhead at Tenaya Lake is about 7 miles each way--this is the shortest way in. I think most people probably would take 3-4 hours each way, plus you'll want sufficient time to spend on the summit. I would also schedule time for a side-trip to lower Sunrise Lake.
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 06:56PM
Great trip report. Sunrise trailhead definitely the fastest way. And I definitely agree about spending time on the summit. I was on a really long hike and I still made time to spend an hour up there and that time just flew by. I can't imagine going on a big hike like that, being in a place like Clouds Rest, and not just soaking everything in for a while.
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 26, 2011 12:37PM
Quote
Paris92
Great report and pics. How long does this hike typically take? I want to do it next summer. Leave from Sunrise trailhead the best way?

typically yes, although you will see a decent % coming up from the Half Dome side. It takes about 3 to 3.5 hours to reach the summit. Last time I was there (this past weekend), I had the summit to myself for over an hour. :-D

You can still do it now. Forecast looks good for the next week - not too hot, not too cold - you can feel the autumn breeze.
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 26, 2011 03:51PM
Quote
Ohnivy-Drak
Quote
Paris92
Great report and pics. How long does this hike typically take? I want to do it next summer. Leave from Sunrise trailhead the best way?

typically yes, although you will see a decent % coming up from the Half Dome side. It takes about 3 to 3.5 hours to reach the summit. Last time I was there (this past weekend), I had the summit to myself for over an hour. :-D

You can still do it now. Forecast looks good for the next week - not too hot, not too cold - you can feel the autumn breeze.


If it was on Sunday (10/23), depending on what time you were on the top of Clouds Rest, I was probably watching you from Olmsted Point. I was getting set to do my very first hike to CR the next day. We left the Sunrise TH at 11:30 am, and with two small breaks, I was on the summit by 2ish. I stayed to photograph the sunset, so I had the summit all to myself for just a hair over 4 hours. (Me Likee!) My buddy didn't do the last 100 yards. It's not that he's afraid of heights (which he is,) it was more 'he didn't have anything to prove'. I was fine with that, so save a few shouts of "You're in my shot!", I was pretty much alone. smiling smiley

We got back to our trucks at 11:30pm. It was an absolutely awesome hike. Even though the winds were howling in the AM over Tioga Pass, it was just a nice breeze on CR.



I should also mention, I was a little apprehensive of the summit based on a few comments and a YouTube video, but once I got up there it was no big deal. On the crest it probably took less than 2 minutes to cross.



Gary Crabbe
Enlightened Images

"Nearness to Nature keeps the Spirit sensitive to impressions not commonly felt, and in touch with unseen powers." - Oyihesa; Santee Dakota indian, from his book, Soul of the Indian (1911)




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/26/2011 03:55PM by enlightphoto.
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 26, 2011 07:14PM
That is one beautiful photo, thanks for sharing. Love the purplish sky.

I was there on Sat, left trailhead about 7:45, reached summit 11:00. Met a guy at the Forsyth/CR junction, he was on his way to Merced Lake (final destination Happy Isles), carrying a tarp and sleeping bag. He had just climbed up Tenaya Canyon, had a fun conversation with him about that. When I asked him if he took Airplane route, he said he took the one that runs close to Pywiack & ended up camping below CR around 9000ft, just off the trail.

Summit was empty until around noon-ish. By the time I left (a little after 1:00), there were about 20 people there. Saw some individuals that were at least hesitant about crossing the ridge. One gentleman was particularly shaky and sat on the ridge facing away from the summit. The apprehension is understandable - first time I reached the summit, I did some butt crawling myself towards the end. A hiker in front of me stopped and was pulled over by his friend. I glanced down into Tenaya Cyn, lost my nerve, had to gather myself for a couple of minutes b4 crawling over. Now it's all second nature, almost too loosey-goosey.

Did you go off-trail at the top of the switchbacks and see the view teaser? From there, It was fun doing some x-country down to that lake the trail passes by. Got some great views of Watkins.

Edit: went back to the photos for the correct times.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 10/26/2011 09:53PM by Ohnivy-Drak.
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 28, 2011 10:05AM
Quote
Ohnivy-Drak
That is one beautiful photo, thanks for sharing. Love the purplish sky.

Did you go off-trail at the top of the switchbacks and see the view teaser? From there, It was fun doing some x-country down to that lake the trail passes by. Got some great views of Watkins.

Thanks for the note. Here's the photo I actually went to get. Story and more info on my weblog: "When Pre-visualization Meets Reality." Since we hiked down at night, no x-country for us. I did sneak a peek over the side from where the trail heads up toward the final ridge. I was apprehensive about the ridge right up to when I took the first step across, but that faded as soon as I was moving. Walking with a business-like confidence makes all the difference. With my buddy below me, and between video & self-timed self-portraits, I probably crossed 85% of the ridge 10 times.






Gary Crabbe
Enlightened Images

"Nearness to Nature keeps the Spirit sensitive to impressions not commonly felt, and in touch with unseen powers." - Oyihesa; Santee Dakota indian, from his book, Soul of the Indian (1911)
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 07:10PM
Has anyone taken the alternate route up to the summit, the one that supposedly has less exposure? While on the footpath, I've seen many people coming around what seems to be a narrow ledge that seems fairly exposed, though it faces the non-Tenaya Canyon side. People just appear, suddenly, out of nowhere.
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 07:15PM
Do you mean the path that leads to Half Dome or LYV? Or is there an additonal path?
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 07:29PM
To the CR summit via Sunrise Trail. According to a couple of books - for those that don't like heights, there's a side trail to get to the summit. I guess you go all the way around and reach the summit from the other side (as if you were hiking from Half Dome), instead of taking the footpath? It might be fun to go around, but then I'd miss my favorite granite lizard.
Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 08:38PM
This sounds like the equestrian "bypass". The junction (from the north) has a trail sign--in fact, it's maybe 50' to the right of the sign in the top photo above. Note that this trail drops 400' before it climbs back up the south side of Clouds Rest. The exposure looks much worse than it is--the ridge is fairly broad, and while there are a few narrow sections, they can be bypassed on nice ledges on the east.
avatar Re: Occupy Clouds Rest
October 18, 2011 09:12PM
I've brought someone over Clouds who refused to go up the subdome of Half Dome... so it's really not that bad imo.

That being said... the "bypass" trail is actually very very nice and worth taking...
Some really nice views up of the other face of clouds rest.
If you go up from Half Dome direction I highly recommend coming back down and around on this bypass trail.



Chick-on is looking at you!
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