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TR: Yosemite Ten Lakes Basin

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TR: Yosemite Ten Lakes Basin

Postby balzaccom » Wed Oct 02, 2013 9:24 am

Since we only had a couple of days, we wanted to do a hike that delivered some great scenery, and lovely places to camp, in a relatively short time and space. And we were going to start hiking on Saturday morning, so we were a little worried about getting a permit.

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Ten Lakes Basin answered the call.

Happily, it was not only M's birthday weekend, but it was also a free entrance day to Yosemite, so we went straight to the wilderness office to see what permits were available. We gave the ranger three choices, and he told us that all three were open---despite the beginning of what we thought would be a busy weekend at the park. Go figure.

A quick drive to the Yosemite Creek trailhead, and we were on the trail by about 10:30 in the morning. The trail follows the west side of Yosemite Creek canyon (but not really the creek) up to Half Moon Meadow, with only a few sections that are steep. But from Half Moon Meadow to the Pass is about 3/4 mile of straight up. Make sure you bring along a large scale map of Yosemite for this trip, because once on top of the pass you will have most of the northern half of the park in view.

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We spent a happy half and hour identifying the various peaks and canyons that we could see---many of which we have hiked over the years: Virginia and Matterhorn Canyons were easy to spot, and so were Shepherd's Crest, Mt. Conness, Sheep's Peak, Virginia Peak, Matterhorn....you get the idea. Lots of fun.

The photo above is only about 20% of the whole vista, but that is Conness on the right and Shepherd's Crest on the left.

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From there it is a steep but short drop down into Ten Lakes Basin ( there are really only seven lakes) and a myriad of spots to pitch your tent. Fishing can be good in the lakes, although the first lake is reported to have fewer and less hungry trout. That's one of the lakes below...And the ridge above the lake even more dramatic.

Because this is such a popular hike, we were a bit worried that we were going to meet a lot of people here, but in fact there was only one other group in the whole basin, and they were camped at one of the lower lakes.

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This was late September, after all, so it go dark fairly early, and it got cold about the same time. We were in the tent and in our sleeping bags by about 8 p.m.

During the night the wind picked up considerably, and we slept in a bit more than usual the next morning. When we woke up, there were plenty of clouds in the sky, and it was decidedly cooler. We took our time getting packed up, and then hit the trail back up to the pass in a very stiff breeze.

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At the top of the pass, the clouds gave an even more spectacular cast to the massive view, and after snapping a few photos, we raced down the trail to get out of the cold. By the time we got back down to Half Moon Meadow, we were out of the wind, into the sun, and out of our jackets into shirtsleeves.

On the drive back out of Yosemite, we were able to stop and take a few pictures of the damage done by the Rim Fire.
Balzaccom

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Re: TR: Yosemite Ten Lakes Basin

Postby justm » Wed Oct 02, 2013 4:12 pm

Thanks for the TR and nice photos, catch any fish ?
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Re: TR: Yosemite Ten Lakes Basin

Postby texan » Wed Oct 02, 2013 4:36 pm

That is one place I haven't been too. I am curious too. Did you catch any fish? Thanks for the TR too.

Texan
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Re: TR: Yosemite Ten Lakes Basin

Postby gary c. » Wed Oct 02, 2013 4:42 pm

Thanks to the extra cloud cover that second pic from the pass is way more interesting than the first. :thumbsup:
"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
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Re: TR: Yosemite Ten Lakes Basin

Postby maverick » Wed Oct 02, 2013 5:08 pm

HST= Wilderness Adventurer who knows no bounds, except for their own imagination.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org
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Re: TR: Yosemite Ten Lakes Basin

Postby texan » Wed Oct 02, 2013 5:28 pm

maverick wrote:Some fishing info here: http://www.yosemite.ca.us/forum/viewtopic.php?t=722


Thanks Maverick for the info.

Tean
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Re: TR: Yosemite Ten Lakes Basin

Postby balzaccom » Wed Oct 02, 2013 10:14 pm

I caught a nice ten inch rainbow on my first cast....and didn't catch another fish even though I saw tons of them, and fished for another hour or so.
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