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Trip Advice: Cedar Grove Kern river loop (partial Cross coun

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Trip Advice: Cedar Grove Kern river loop (partial Cross coun

Postby nsmeier » Fri Jul 18, 2014 11:59 am

I am trying to plan a partially cross country trip from Cedar Grove, up Bubbs Creek, to Reflection Lake, over Millys Foot Pass (?) to Lake South America, then over to south Guard Lake to the West (best way to do that?--pass around thunder Mtn?). Then down to Sphinx (advice on that route?), and back down Sphinx creek to Cedar Grove. I would be going either early august, on late Auguest.

I think I got this idea originally form someone on this board, but do not have details. Any advice is welcome.

Nick
http://nicholasmeier.wordpress.com
Attached is a rough sketch of what I hope to do:
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CedarGrove-Kerns.jpg



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Trip Advice: Cedar Grove Kern river loop (partial Cross coun

Postby AlmostThere » Fri Jul 18, 2014 12:39 pm

Hi Nick,

How comfortable are you with class 2 - 3?

I had a similar trip plan but milly and lucy are crumbling steep chutes. Harrison has eroded and changed, I am told, for the worst.


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Re: Trip Advice: Cedar Grove Kern river loop (partial Cross coun

Postby Electra » Fri Jul 18, 2014 1:25 pm

I did a very similar route with the exception of staying at Lake South America (stayed at lake below Thunder Mtn). I did Milly's and then crossed just south of Thunder Mtn, which I believe is called 'Thunder Pass'. This pass is easier on the east side with the west side being a long and tedious descent, initially in a scree chute and then into a more open bowl with mixed scree and boulders.

The rest of your route is fairly straight forward as you take south guard pass and then sphinx pass to get to Sphinx Lakes. From these lakes it is more cross country into the creek drainage where you will find the trail down into kings canyon. This is a wonderful and dramatic route with Millys and Thunder Pass being the most demanding parts of your itinerary.
Dan Braun
Evergreen Lodge & SYMG
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Re: Trip Advice: Cedar Grove Kern river loop (partial Cross coun

Postby maverick » Fri Jul 18, 2014 1:54 pm

Your easiest route will be to use Thunder Pass, not what you indicated on your map
but here: HST Map
As Electra mention the talus is steep, and very loose especially in the middle portion
of you decent. Going over Longely Pass will be a breeze after Thunder.
The other way would to get to South Guard Lake would be over MacLeod Pass and
then Thunder Ridge, but both are talus hell-holes and would not be the easier route.
The Upper Kern Passes are not easy either, be sure that your comfortable with
solid class 2/3 terrain before attempting.
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: Trip Advice: Cedar Grove Kern river loop (partial Cross coun

Postby Pato » Fri Jul 18, 2014 6:47 pm

We did essentially this loop last year. TR is here viewtopic.php?f=1&t=9837

I would suggest using Thunder Pass as others noted as MacLeod Pass was not much fun and there was an awful lot of talus from there all the way down to 11,000' in the Cunningham drainage.
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Re: Trip Advice: Cedar Grove Kern river loop (partial Cross coun

Postby Electra » Sat Jul 19, 2014 8:52 am

To clarify, it appears I did not go over the actual Thunder Pass listed on HST map but Macleod Pass. I crossed south of Thunder Mountain and descended into the Table Creek drainage and lower meadows/ponds where I camped. What I refer to as South Guard Pass is called Cinder Col and is just a minor gap. Milly's is sketchy at the top.
Dan Braun
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Re: Trip Advice: Cedar Grove Kern river loop (partial Cross coun

Postby sekihiker » Sun Jul 20, 2014 8:35 am

I guess this must be one of my favorite areas since I have posted several trip reports that deal with it. The problem with the area is the Kings-Kern Divide with its challenging crossings. For some photos and words on the crossings, visit:
http://sierrahiker.home.comcast.net/Hig ... index.html
http://sierrahiker.home.comcast.net/Ker ... index.html
http://sierrahiker.home.comcast.net/Ker ... index.html
http://sierrahiker.home.comcast.net/MtBrewer/index.htm
http://sierrahiker.home.comcast.net/Thu ... index.html
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