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Seeking input: Rae Lakes loop or hike of similar distance?

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Seeking input: Rae Lakes loop or hike of similar distance?

Postby walterfredo » Thu Jun 05, 2014 10:09 pm

Hello, seeking input on a route selection, here's some basic info, and thanks in advance...all input and advice greatly appreciated.

I'd say we're level 2 as far as experience, but are both in great shape and are looking for a challenging hike. Last summer we hiked out of Mineral King, over Franklin Pass to Forester Lake, and looped back over Sawtooth, about 35+/- miles in 2 nights/3 days. I'd say we're comfortable with just about anything but want to avoid x-country for now and stick to trails.

We're pretty open to most trail heads, but did mineral king last year so want to try another location, and I'm thinking roads end. I realize the Rae Lakes loop is very popular, but it sounds appealing nonetheless. We don't have a set date, but most likely looking for sometime in July, probably a Wednesday through Sunday. Obviously we don't have a permit (too late to get one?) and will be forced to try our luck with a walk up permit. Is it unreasoned to think we could do this?

I've searched and read a bit on the forum but thought I'd post looking for input, here are my basic questions...

1. Is it unreasonable to think we could get a walk up permit for Rae lakes loop on a Wednesday? Are the crowds just too much and make for a less than pleasant experience?

2. If we go to roads end and can't acquire a permit are there plenty of other suitable options?

3. Any recommendations on other hikes in the range of 35-50 miles? I would prefer a loop but would definitely be ok with an in/out hike. We're also open to other trail heads on the west side in SEKI or even Yosemite. I realize this last question is quite vague, and there are a ton of possible options. If this type of question has already been discussed on HST maybe someone could point me toward the discussion. Thanks!!



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Re: Seeking input: Rae Lakes loop or hike of similar distance?

Postby AlmostThere » Fri Jun 06, 2014 5:38 am

1, check the full trailheads report on the website and notice the number of days that are full to gauge this.

2. No. There are not. For longer trips on trail, there are four trailheads. Going out of Copper Creek or Lewis Creek may surprise you with how much sweat and tears you can lose in July. (It'll be HOT and STEEP.)

3. Look at trailheads in Sequoia/Jennie Wilderness. There are a number of entry points for Silliman/Deadman/HST loop and the shuttle picks up at Giant Forest Museum to get you back to Lodgepole or Wolverton.
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Re: Seeking input: Rae Lakes loop or hike of similar distance?

Postby Buford » Fri Jun 06, 2014 12:13 pm

Last year i did the Lodgepole, Silliman Pass, Roaring river, Deadman canyon, Elizabeth pass, HST out to Crescent meadow. I agree with Almostthere that some form of that "loop" makes a great alternative to Rae lakes. The free shuttle makes it easy. I'll do a report at some point.

Rae lakes was as nice as I hoped, and not as crowded as I feared when I did it in September a couple years ago. Worth doing once, probably wouldn't do it again unless very early or late season for which I am not prepared.
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Re: Seeking input: Rae Lakes loop or hike of similar distance?

Postby maverick » Fri Jun 06, 2014 12:35 pm

Hi Walter,

Welcome to HST!
1. Is it unreasonable to think we could get a walk up permit for Rae lakes loop on
a Wednesday? Are the crowds just too much and make for a less than pleasant experience?


75% are reserved permits, the rest at walk-in. If you get there Wednesday morning
you should be fine. Read:
http://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/w ... ermits.htm
http://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/r ... bility.htm
2. If we go to roads end and can't acquire a permit are there plenty of other suitable options?


Nope, if you cannot get the permits for this trip, than you won't get anything
up Bubbs, and going up Copper or Lewis in the middle of July will be very hot and
dry with mosquitoes and annoying black flies keeping you company along the way.

I think you will be okay with the Rae Lake Loop, you will not have big crowds, if
it is a little crowded for your taste then go up to Dragon Lake, there is a use trail
and you will have some solitude and beautiful lake to yourself. Make sure your
prepared for some nasty mosquitoes to keep you company. :\
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: Seeking input: Rae Lakes loop or hike of similar distance?

Postby walterfredo » Fri Jun 06, 2014 6:57 pm

Thanks all! Appreciate the input. Have a permit request in for Rae lakes and if we get denied we'll take are chances day of. Happy summer.
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Re: Seeking input: Rae Lakes loop or hike of similar distance?

Postby maverick » Fri Jun 06, 2014 7:00 pm

Please post a TR when you get back, not only for everyone's enjoyment, but also
to help your fellow HST member who may be planning their own trip to this area
too.
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: Seeking input: Rae Lakes loop or hike of similar distance?

Postby walterfredo » Fri Jun 06, 2014 9:13 pm

Absolutely. Will do.
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