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Re: Comments on a summer itinerary

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avatar Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 02:20PM
I have planned and gotten my permit reserved for the following summer trip (went over all the details with a ranger to make sure it was legal too):

Entry Trailhead: May Lake
Night 1: May Lake
Night 2: May Lake (plan on dayhiking Hoffman this day)
Night 3: Glen Aulin
Night 4: Young Lakes
Night 5: Young Lakes (dayhike Conness)
Night 6: Young Lakes (extra day in case the weather is bad and I can't dayhike Conness the day before)
Night 7: Lyell Canyon (food re-supply in Tuoulmne Meadows on the way; don't think I want to attempt going over Donahue after going so many miles this day)
Night 8: Thousand Island Lakes (seeing a sunrise on Banner is important for me)
Night 9: Lake Catherine (how tough is the North Glacier Pass between Davis and Banner to get here? Heard there were some legal places to camp here if you snoop long enough)
Night 10: Lake Catherine (Dayhike to Davis. Maybe Ritter?)
Night 11: Shadow Lake maybe? To setup a dayhike to Devils Postpile the next day.
Night 12: Shadow Lake
Night 13: Lyell Canyon; could camp before Donahue if I don't feel like doing the pass after coming from Shadow
Night 14: Cathedral Lakes (not sure which one yet; food re-supply at TM on the way)
Night 15: Sunrise Lakes; probably Middle Sunrise. Maybe a hike to Tenaya Peak if I get to the lake early enough and feel like a still have a good dayhike in me. (thanks for the route, chick-on!)
Night 16: Sunrise Lakes (dayhike either Tenaya Peak or Clouds Rest)
Night 17: Merced Lake
Night 18: LYV
Exit Trailhead: Happy Isles (will probably take the JMT down since I have always used Mist before)

I have setup the days of nights 6, 11-12, 16 as rest days in case I'm wearing myself out with the schedule (never backpacked more than 3 consecutive nights yet). Or they could be weather days if the clouds look bad in the morning. I'm not sure if Ritter is going to be beyond my hiking level, but the west side is supposed to be class 2 if you stay on the route and are smart enough to leave ducks so you can find the exit off the summit ridge. From what I have read on summitpost it seems to have a decent chance to be ice free (any ice = turn back immediately for me) by early September (when I'll be there) in a normal year, much less a pathetic snow year like this one. Have camped at 10,000, so hopefully 11,000 won't be any different. I made sure my food pickup dates are all weekdays and non-holiday so I can get them from the post office.

Is Shadow a decent place to camp to get to Devil's Postpile? Is Rosalie, Gladys, or Vivian better? I might add an extra day at Catherine for weather or for dayhiking based on how I feel with my abilities out there, at the expense of Devil's Postpile. I could skip Merced Lake too if I need something easier on the way down at the end. I know the first day is really short, but I might end up getting to the trailhead that day about 6:00-6:30 PM since the Yarts 120 run in that direction is late and since I might not get into the valley early enough to catch the morning shuttle from there to TM (I'll be entering in August when it's still running).

Any comments or suggestions? This will be the first time I will have been able to fit in as much time as I wanted coming to the park, lol. Much better than the 3 day trips I have been able to swing before.



Edited 5 time(s). Last edit at 03/08/2012 02:46PM by mbear.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 02:38PM
Crap, I forgot to ask the rangers if it was legal to stop at the TM grill for non-trail food on my two days passing through it. Anyone know?
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 07:28PM
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mbear
Crap, I forgot to ask the rangers if it was legal to stop at the TM grill for non-trail food on my two days passing through it. Anyone know?

Don't ask; don't tell.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 07:40PM
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eeek
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mbear
Crap, I forgot to ask the rangers if it was legal to stop at the TM grill for non-trail food on my two days passing through it. Anyone know?

Don't ask; don't tell.

Haha, alright.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 09:52PM
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mbear
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eeek
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mbear
Crap, I forgot to ask the rangers if it was legal to stop at the TM grill for non-trail food on my two days passing through it. Anyone know?

Don't ask; don't tell.

Haha, alright.

Seriously. The rules are ambiguous and if you ask, you might not get what you want. And do you really think they'd go after a PCT through hiker that got a burger and fries?
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 09:53PM
Sounds like the same way I dealt with an Air France connection screw-up in Paris a few years ago...didn't like the answer I was hearing from one counter, so I went to another counter and they had a preferable answer.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 03:26PM
Awesome trip plan! My only comment is that Lake Catherine is rather inhospitable...lots of medium to large talus all the way down to the "shore". There are a couple of small flat spots between the talus as I recall if you really feel a need to camp there. I have camped in the past both at the west end of Thousand Island as well as maybe a quarter of the way up towards Catherine along a stream with a nice view of Thousand Island Lake. Both spots give you plenty of access to Ritter, etc.
Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 04:40PM
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Bearproof
Awesome trip plan! My only comment is that Lake Catherine is rather inhospitable...lots of medium to large talus all the way down to the "shore".

I'll concur with the grim appraisal of Lake Catherine's camping:



It's mostly rock/talus/snow bound, depending on the time of the season. This picture was taken July 4 2004, a wetter-than-average year. This year will probably have much less snow. There are nice places further west of the pass/lake, but it drops quickly on that side. Plus, Catherine is not that far from Thousand Island Lake--maybe a few hours' walk tops. I'd recommend instead just base-camping at Thousand Island Lake for the Davis/Ritter ascent.

Also, imho, Shadow isn't that special (and I think camping is not allowed around it anyway)--instead, I'd target Garnett, Nydiver, or Ediza--all of which are within an easy-ish day of Devils Postpile, or at least the shuttle stop at Agnew Meadow. Are you resupplying at Devils Postpile? You can mail yourself a package or leave it at the Reds Meadow pack station.

Anyway, your itinerary sounds wonderful--you'll see a lot of great country!

(More pictures from the trip above: the Sierra High Route from Agnew Meadow to Tuolumne. FWIW, the off-trail Sierra High Route could be taken south from Thousand Island Lake to Ediza Lake via Whitebark Pass.)
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 07:00PM
Speaking of different lakes around the San Joaquin headwaters...seems like there's a lot of time in that area, Badger Lakes are less photogenic but are great for swimming, if one wanted to move camp around for a day.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 08:17PM
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ttilley
Speaking of different lakes around the San Joaquin headwaters...seems like there's a lot of time in that area, Badger Lakes are less photogenic but are great for swimming, if one wanted to move camp around for a day.

What would you say sets it apart from the other lakes for swimming? Seclusion in comparison to the other nearby lakes?
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 08:29PM
That, and warmth. They're much smaller but still deep enough for good swimming.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 09:53PM
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ttilley
warmth.

What does Thousand Island Lake lack for 500, Alex?
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 08:06PM
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basilbop
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Bearproof
Awesome trip plan! My only comment is that Lake Catherine is rather inhospitable...lots of medium to large talus all the way down to the "shore".

I'll concur with the grim appraisal of Lake Catherine's camping:



It's mostly rock/talus/snow bound, depending on the time of the season. This picture was taken July 4 2004, a wetter-than-average year. This year will probably have much less snow. There are nice places further west of the pass/lake, but it drops quickly on that side. Plus, Catherine is not that far from Thousand Island Lake--maybe a few hours' walk tops. I'd recommend instead just base-camping at Thousand Island Lake for the Davis/Ritter ascent.

Ritter sounds difficult enough based on reports I have read from people who camp at Catherine. I guess I'll take my pack up and if I can't find somewhere, return down the pass and camp around 1000 Island instead. Should I expect there to still be snow around there in early September? Other than the glacier of course.

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Also, imho, Shadow isn't that special (and I think camping is not allowed around it anyway)--instead, I'd target Garnett, Nydiver, or Ediza--all of which are within an easy-ish day of Devils Postpile, or at least the shuttle stop at Agnew Meadow. Are you resupplying at Devils Postpile? You can mail yourself a package or leave it at the Reds Meadow pack station.

Garnet and Ediza have definitely looked like awesome places in research I have done in planning the trip. I def don't want to take any shuttles packed with people in the middle of my trip, so I'll probably skip that though. I'll take a look at Nydiver since I don't recognize the name from what I have looked at so far. I'm definitely trying to keep my time south of Donahue really flexible. I won't need to resupply at Devil's Postpile, since I'll be resupplying at TM right before going over Donahue and then again right after going back over it.

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KatyAnderson
Day hiking from Shadow Lake to Devils Postpile is a bad idea. The trail from Shadow down to Devils Postpile is long, dusty and boring. Skip it. Unless you really, really need it for resupply. Then hike out to Agnew Meadows as it is considerably shorter, although still hot, dusty and boring, and take the shuttle to Reds Meadow. Then resupply and walk over to the Postpile. Understand me, the Postpile is interesting, but more so if you just stepped out of the shuttle bus and walked 50 yards, rather then having hiked 10 dusty miles to get there and have the same 10 dusty uphill miles back to your tent.

I'll definitely be back, so I think I'll save Devil's Postpile for another time. I really want to do the full JMT some time, so maybe I'll save Devils Postpile for then.

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KatyAnderson
Middle Sunrise is my favorite, a very special place. There is a hill midway between Sunrise camp and the Sunrise lakes (chick-on would know the name) anyway hike up this hill, a quarter mile detour for a fabulous view of Long Meadow and more.

Thanks for the heads up; I'll definitely check that either when hitting Sunrise from Cathedral or on the way to Merced from Sunrise.

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KatyAnderson
I would not do LYV as your last night. It will seem way to crowded and crazy after your long time in the back country. Instead camp a couple of miles before LYV where your map says that there is a campground, but in fact there is no sign of it anymore. It's a beautiful spot next to the river and you may have it all to yourself.

Are you talking about by Moraine Dome? That's the area a ranger I talked to suggested. The appeal of LYV for me might be to have easy and quick access to go up Liberty Cap on my last day. That was one of the first things I wanted to hike the first time I went to the park, and I was surprised to read here that it was pretty straightforward.
Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 09:08PM
What a great trip!

Those who mentioned Shadow Lake might be off limits for camping are correct. We did the last 60 miles of the JMT from DPP to Happy Isles last summer and because our permit was through the Inyo Nat'l Forest we got all the regs for the area. I agree with the others that Rosalie and Gladys are nice but not really worth the effort. Ediza is worth it.

I don't think any one cares if you eat at the grill. We took a layover day in TM and actually hitched into Lee Vining to do laundry and get something we had forgotten.

I have never really gotten a permit for a complex multiday trip from YNP rangers...we have always started outside the park and walked in for those. Do the rangers in the park always make you write out a specific itinerary like that? The Nat'l Forest folks only wrote down our itinerary for the National Forest (and they told us we didn't have to stick with it), after that, they just wrote down yosemite valley - happy Isles as our exit point. We gave ourselves many more days on the perfmit than we knew were necesary so we could take our time and wound up really exploring the Merced River Canyon because we had the time to do so and our permit kind of gave us lots of latitude. Your trip is complex. Would the rangers require as much detail from a trip that might not be as complex? We are thinking of doing Red Peak Pass this summer... we can go in via DPP and come across and come out at GP or Happy Isles (which creates adventures in car shuttling), or we could do the entire trip in the park. Do you have to give the NPS rangers a detailed itinerary like yours and then do you have to stick with it?
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 09:19PM
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riverkat
I have never really gotten a permit for a complex multiday trip from YNP rangers...we have always started outside the park and walked in for those. Do the rangers in the park always make you write out a specific itinerary like that? The Nat'l Forest folks only wrote down our itinerary for the National Forest (and they told us we didn't have to stick with it), after that, they just wrote down yosemite valley - happy Isles as our exit point. We gave ourselves many more days on the perfmit than we knew were necesary so we could take our time and wound up really exploring the Merced River Canyon because we had the time to do so and our permit kind of gave us lots of latitude. Your trip is complex. Would the rangers require as much detail from a trip that might not be as complex? We are thinking of doing Red Peak Pass this summer... we can go in via DPP and come across and come out at GP or Happy Isles (which creates adventures in car shuttling), or we could do the entire trip in the park. Do you have to give the NPS rangers a detailed itinerary like yours and then do you have to stick with it?

No need to give an itinerary reserving the permit at Yosemite (though a lot of parks like Yellowstone and Grand Teton you do since they have assigned campsites in the backcountry). Maybe you do picking it up? (this will be the first time backpacking Yosemite for me)

All the ranger wanted to know for the reservation was the starting and ending trailheads and dates, as well as a main destination. I gave the detailed itinerary just to run it by her for suggestions like I did here.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/08/2012 09:23PM by mbear.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 10:14PM
They MAY ask you where you are camping each night. They only do this as a type of "survey".
You don't have to stick to any plan at all. And they won't write on your permit where you are going.
You have as much lee way as you possibly need. You only are required to enter on the
start date on your Permit. For the exit date and TH exit you also do not have to stick to it.
You can come out a day or so sooner or later on any TH you so desire.
National Forest Permits seem to always ask where you gonna camp every single night.
I just make crap up at that pt. We always just wing it.
Case in pt. ... mbear... When we went to 1000 Island in 2010... WAAAAY too many peeps...
so we nixed Garnet (you SHOULD visit that one for sure) and head to Marie.
We Loved Marie... esp. since we had it to ourselves. We went out Lyell Canyon and
was zigging off trail towards Maclure and a ranger lady asked for our permit..
I hadn't really checked it and it said exit Mono TH... no problemo at all...
As others have said... nix Devils Postpile and stay out in the backcountry playing around.
Save the Postpile for JMT or just drive there.
O... and Katy is talking about Sunrise Mtn. smiling smiley

Have fun!



Chick-on is looking at you!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/08/2012 10:17PM by chick-on.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 24, 2012 01:00AM
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basilbop
Also, imho, Shadow isn't that special (and I think camping is not allowed around it anyway)--instead, I'd target Garnett, Nydiver, or Ediza--all of which are within an easy-ish day of Devils Postpile, or at least the shuttle stop at Agnew Meadow. Are you resupplying at Devils Postpile? You can mail yourself a package or leave it at the Reds Meadow pack station.

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KatyAnderson
Shadow lake is not very interesting and besides as Basilbop points out they discourage you from camping there.
Go to Ediza instead. Beautiful. Or Nydiver if you are adventurous, there is an informal trail most of the way from Ediza to the closest of the Nydivers.
Garnet is also fabulous. In fact the whole area in below the Ritter range is spectacular. Maybe spend more of your time there.

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LisaT
People are right to highlight Thousand Island, Ediza, Nydiver, and Marie Lakes. One other extraordinary lake not yet mentioned is Iceberg Lake, a nice dayhike/stroll from Ediza.

Thanks guys for the Nydiver suggestions. Wow, after checking some trip reports Nydiver and Iceberg look every bit as interesting as Catherine, and I'm definitely going to have to find a way to fit those two in. Which of the two areas (Nydiver Lakes vs Iceberg) makes a prettier sunrise? Or is Ediza better than both?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/24/2012 01:03AM by mbear.
Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 07:25PM
18 days in the back country = nice!

Random thoughts in no particular order:

Shadow lake is not very interesting and besides as Basilbop points out they discourage you from camping there.
Go to Ediza instead. Beautiful. Or Nydiver if you are adventurous, there is an informal trail most of the way from Ediza to the closest of the Nydivers.
Garnet is also fabulous. In fact the whole area in below the Ritter range is spectacular. Maybe spend more of your time there.

Day hiking from Shadow Lake to Devils Postpile is a bad idea. The trail from Shadow down to Devils Postpile is long, dusty and boring. Skip it. Unless you really, really need it for resupply. Then hike out to Agnew Meadows as it is considerably shorter, although still hot, dusty and boring, and take the shuttle to Reds Meadow. Then resupply and walk over to the Postpile. Understand me, the Postpile is interesting, but more so if you just stepped out of the shuttle bus and walked 50 yards, rather then having hiked 10 dusty miles to get there and have the same 10 dusty uphill miles back to your tent.

Middle Sunrise is my favorite, a very special place. There is a hill midway between Sunrise camp and the Sunrise lakes (chick-on would know the name) anyway hike up this hill, a quarter mile detour for a fabulous view of Long Meadow and more.

I would not do LYV as your last night. It will seem way to crowded and crazy after your long time in the back country. Instead camp a couple of miles before LYV where your map says that there is a campground, but in fact there is no sign of it anymore. It's a beautiful spot next to the river and you may have it all to yourself.
Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 07:48PM
I agree with Basilbop. Shadow is nothing special at all and Rosalie and Gladys are not worth the climb from shadow. If I had to choose one it would be Rosalie as Gladys is a bug infested forested sight and the JMT to Devils postpile is a rather viewless trudge. You will have lots of company.

Here's what I would do. This would keep doubling back on the same route to a minimum. Check out the Yarts schedule here: http://www.yarts.com/schedules.html
On day 6 when you come out you can hang at the Toulumne grill until the bus comes at 6:50pm. Take that to Mammoth and rest up at the motel 6 for the night. since you will be there too late to catch the mandatory shuttle to Devil's Postpile. Or you can hitch a ride down and try and get a campsite. Check out the Postpile in the am which is awesome and then hit the trail. You can take the PCT to Thousand Island lake or take the JMT but veer off towards Minaret or Ediza lakes and then work your way over to Thousand Island Lake but hitting Garnet and countless numbers of other lakes along the way. That would give you about 6 days to explore the Thousand Island vicinity before you get back to your day 13 goal of ending up around Donahue pass. Lots of good cross country scrambles to be had in this area. and yes you need to watch the sunrise on Banner from Garnet or Thousand Island. Fishing is great in this ara too if you want to stretch your food supplies.

Sounds like a great trip!
Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 07:59PM
What Katy said! I miissed her post while I was writing mine. That's great advice from her. If you are really into geology then you will love the postpile. The Yarts shuttle option only makes the boring trudge 1 way so not so bad but I agree with Katy. I do not think it would be worthwhile to hike down and back up some rather dull and very dusty trail to see the postpile per you itinerary.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 08:14PM
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apeman45
I agree with Basilbop. Shadow is nothing special at all and Rosalie and Gladys are not worth the climb from shadow. If I had to choose one it would be Rosalie as Gladys is a bug infested forested sight and the JMT to Devils postpile is a rather viewless trudge. You will have lots of company.

Here's what I would do. This would keep doubling back on the same route to a minimum. Check out the Yarts schedule here: http://www.yarts.com/schedules.html
On day 6 when you come out you can hang at the Toulumne grill until the bus comes at 6:50pm. Take that to Mammoth and rest up at the motel 6 for the night. since you will be there too late to catch the mandatory shuttle to Devil's Postpile. Or you can hitch a ride down and try and get a campsite. Check out the Postpile in the am which is awesome and then hit the trail. You can take the PCT to Thousand Island lake or take the JMT but veer off towards Minaret or Ediza lakes and then work your way over to Thousand Island Lake but hitting Garnet and countless numbers of other lakes along the way. That would give you about 6 days to explore the Thousand Island vicinity before you get back to your day 13 goal of ending up around Donahue pass. Lots of good cross country scrambles to be had in this area. and yes you need to watch the sunrise on Banner from Garnet or Thousand Island. Fishing is great in this ara too if you want to stretch your food supplies.

Sounds like a great trip!

Sounds like a good plan, but I really want to do Donahue from the north for the views of Lyell as I'm hiking through and out of Lyell Canyon. Thanks for the heads up on Shadow and Devil's Postpile; based on your report and others here, it definitely seems like something to skip with so much other great stuff around.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 09:07PM
One other thought towards the latter end of the trip...Tuolumne Meadows to Nelson Lake (instead of Sunrise) is far less crowded, and the cross-country from Nelson to Merced is very nice, and none of it involves any climbing. Of course, I'm not sure where you need to stay after resupply at T-Meadows, or whether resupply plus backpackers camp at T-Meadows is a legal option given you're not a PCT through-hiker, and the 4-miles-plus-not-in-E-Lake-Drainage would be a limitation if Backpackers Camp wasn't an option on the same permit.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 08, 2012 09:38PM
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ttilley
One other thought towards the latter end of the trip...Tuolumne Meadows to Nelson Lake (instead of Sunrise) is far less crowded, and the cross-country from Nelson to Merced is very nice, and none of it involves any climbing. Of course, I'm not sure where you need to stay after resupply at T-Meadows, or whether resupply plus backpackers camp at T-Meadows is a legal option given you're not a PCT through-hiker, and the 4-miles-plus-not-in-E-Lake-Drainage would be a limitation if Backpackers Camp wasn't an option on the same permit.

The reservation email I got gives authorization only for staying the night before and the exit night, so I don't think that would be legal. It's looks like more x-country than I think I'd like to do with a pack on this trip anyways though.
Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 09, 2012 08:03AM
Rosalie has good fishin'
Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 09, 2012 04:32PM
Pay attention to camping restrictions along this route, because when they impose those it means that area gets hammered with a capital HAM by people, which also means the bears will wake you up at night.

We spent a night uphill from Shadow Lake, on the uphill side of the trail where it's legal (can't camp near the creek) and a bear woke us up twice. The only night we weren't bothered by a bear rattling the canisters was the night we hiked off trail to a less impacted area. Rangers told us when we started that there was a nuisance bear at Thousand Island so we blew right on through and went elsewhere.

The campsites in Lyell canyon are not all legal - you need to be four miles out from the trailhead, past the telltale avalanche chute - and I recommend getting up the canyon as far as you can. Donahue is not a hard pass to do but it is a long-ish slog up it.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 09, 2012 07:50PM
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AlmostThere
Pay attention to camping restrictions along this route, because when they impose those it means that area gets hammered with a capital HAM by people, which also means the bears will wake you up at night.

We spent a night uphill from Shadow Lake, on the uphill side of the trail where it's legal (can't camp near the creek) and a bear woke us up twice. The only night we weren't bothered by a bear rattling the canisters was the night we hiked off trail to a less impacted area. Rangers told us when we started that there was a nuisance bear at Thousand Island so we blew right on through and went elsewhere.

Thanks for the advice. I'll make sure to give the Inyo national forest a call when picking up my permit to get their latest info about problem bears.

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The campsites in Lyell canyon are not all legal - you need to be four miles out from the trailhead, past the telltale avalanche chute - and I recommend getting up the canyon as far as you can.

Am I correct to say the first legal camping in Lyell Canyon is going to be about when you're due west of Kuna Crest North? Lyell Fork is a year-round water source, or no?

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Donahue is not a hard pass to do but it is a long-ish slog up it.

Not sure if I want to go the whole 11 miles and 2600 feet up to Donahue and then lose that to get down to 1000 Island the same day I'm coming down from Young Lakes. I figured it makes sense to get up the canyon since it looks like easy mileage and then save the climb and descent for the next morning.
Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 10, 2012 07:15PM
Once you get past the Ireland Creek trail turn-off camping is legal. Going from Young lakes all the way up and over Donahue in a day is ambitious. Yes, the first 6 - 8 miles of Lyell are a pleasent stroll. Hiking up to Donohuse pass the last couple of miles is very steep. I am certain someone on these boards will know the elevation gain in the last mile or two up to Donahue. It's pretty intense. We walked down it last summer (we started at DPP) and walked all the way out to TM and the pounding killed us.

Have you considered coming out from Young Lakes and staying at the backpacker's campground at TM? It's 5 bucks a night. Get there mid day, set up, get a burger at the grill, a brew at the store and relax. Get an early start on the pass the next day.

Very jealous of your trip!
Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 10, 2012 10:58PM
Hi,

People are right to highlight Thousand Island, Ediza, Nydiver, and Marie Lakes. One other extraordinary lake not yet mentioned is Iceberg Lake, a nice dayhike/stroll from Ediza.

I'd definitely recommend doing Catherine Lake as a dayhike from Thousand Island, rather than taking a full pack up to Catherine and expecting to find a spot. You can camp on the northwestern end of Thousand Island, away from all the people.

Another really nice stroll from Thousand Island is over the hump into the basin above/just west of Garnet Lake, there is an absolutely gorgeous unnamed lake up there and it's all a big garden with Banner towering immediately above. If you are leaving camp at Thousand Island and hoping to get back onto the JMT southbound, you could just hike over to that basin with your full pack, then down/east to Garnet Lake. To get to the JMT, Garnet is more easily hiked on the north shore than on the south.

You sure you want to go out-and-back? What about maybe hiking down to Shadow Lake (which is actually really pretty, though you can't camp at that pretty spot), Agnew Meadows (which is a nice hike in my opinion, not hot & dusty & viewless like the JMT to Gladys Lake & Devils Postpile), then onto the High Trail/PCT north back to Thousand Island. Amazing views from the High Trail.

If it were me, once I got back to Thousand Island I'd hike back to the Tioga Road via Agnew Lakes/Koip Pass/Parker Pass, rather than retracing my steps through Lyell. New stuff to see, that way. However, I don't know if that would cause a problem with your route being "legal" (continuous without requiring a new permit).

Finally, why go from Sunrise down to Happy Isles if you have already been through LVV before? I honestly do not think there is much interesting to see between Sunrise & the top of Nevada Falls, unless you are going to do Clouds Rest or Half Dome on the way.

Lisa
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 11, 2012 09:05PM
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LisaT
I'd definitely recommend doing Catherine Lake as a dayhike from Thousand Island, rather than taking a full pack up to Catherine and expecting to find a spot. You can camp on the northwestern end of Thousand Island, away from all the people.

Another really nice stroll from Thousand Island is over the hump into the basin above/just west of Garnet Lake, there is an absolutely gorgeous unnamed lake up there and it's all a big garden with Banner towering immediately above. If you are leaving camp at Thousand Island and hoping to get back onto the JMT southbound, you could just hike over to that basin with your full pack, then down/east to Garnet Lake. To get to the JMT, Garnet is more easily hiked on the north shore than on the south.

You sure you want to go out-and-back? What about maybe hiking down to Shadow Lake (which is actually really pretty, though you can't camp at that pretty spot), Agnew Meadows (which is a nice hike in my opinion, not hot & dusty & viewless like the JMT to Gladys Lake & Devils Postpile), then onto the High Trail/PCT north back to Thousand Island. Amazing views from the High Trail.

Thanks Lisa for the suggestions. I'll definitely do some research on the areas you recommended.

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If it were me, once I got back to Thousand Island I'd hike back to the Tioga Road via Agnew Lakes/Koip Pass/Parker Pass, rather than retracing my steps through Lyell. New stuff to see, that way. However, I don't know if that would cause a problem with your route being "legal" (continuous without requiring a new permit).

Is there a trail between Parker Pass or Mono Pass and Tuolumne Meadows (and if so, about how far is it?) I ask because I don't see a trail on the USGS topo maps nor on Google Earth, but I do see one on a map the park puts out showing legal camping areas. I don't think I'd want to cross country through Dana Meadows when there is such a problem with people going out in Tuolumne Meadows. I'd hate to damage an area that could be ecologically fragile.

I could probably get away with hitchiking the road from the Mono Pass trailhead to TM (to hike onto Cathedral Lakes), but I really don't want to break the wilderness rules in a place that gives backpackers so much freedom to do what they want (as opposed to a lot of other parks where one has to have every campsite on the route set in stone the first day).

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Finally, why go from Sunrise down to Happy Isles if you have already been through LVV before? I honestly do not think there is much interesting to see between Sunrise & the top of Nevada Falls, unless you are going to do Clouds Rest or Half Dome on the way.

I want to do at least one of Clouds Rest and Tenaya Peak, and also see Merced Lake. Up Liberty Cap also looks like a pretty interesting hike.



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 03/11/2012 09:17PM by mbear.
avatar Re: Comments on a summer itinerary
March 11, 2012 09:31PM
There is no trail b/t Mono Pass TH and TM. You have to do xcountry to get from A to B.

I did search of Parker Pass. and if you are REALLY interested in that... I babbled about it here:
http://yosemitenews.info/forum/read.php?3,27002

And I put up a trip report of Loop from Mono TH to 1000 and down Lyell... etc. here:
http://yosemitenews.info/forum/read.php?3,27023

Have fun whatever you do... but I can almost guarantee you that whatever you plan... you
will stray from it quite a bit. It always happens. Unless your stuck in a rut on the JMT or PCT.
Have fun whatever you do! And you will!
smiling smiley



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