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Sierra/White Mountain backpacking trip suggestions

Posted: Thu Nov 09, 2006 1:15 pm
by newtwuzhere
Hi everybody,

I'm brand-spankin' new to this site, but you look like a friendly and helpful bunch. A friend is coming to visit me in 1.5 weeks and we've decided to do some male bonding vis-a-vis a backpacking trip.

I'm looking for suggestions... we will drive up on a Thursday night, and would like to drive back Sunday night or Monday morning. I'll be coming from the Monterey Bay Area. Thats our time window. We are both in good shape and are looking for a scenic challenge! The biggest problem for me is finding someplace where we won't run into people constantly... something scenic and remote would be fantastic! Ideally, there wouldn't be alot of bureaucratic hoops to jump through to get in as well, restrictions, 15 different permits... etc.

If you have any cool hike ideas, please let me know. I really appreciate it.


Posted: Thu Nov 09, 2006 1:34 pm
by Snow Nymph
Hi Newt,

I was at Onion Valley Saturday and saw only two vehicles. They drove up after I left the trailhead, and were gone when I got back 6.5 hrs later.

Sunday I was at North Lake with tomcat, and we didn't see anyone all day!

The weekend before our group of 8 saw only one small group (I only saw 1 guy, but there was a tent and maybe 2 sleeping bags) the whole weekend.

The week before (Tues) we did Mt Lewis, from Mono Pass TH in Yosemite. Didn't see anyone all day. And on Sunday before that we did Boundary Peak (NV) and only our group of 9 was there.

Photos and trips are in the backpacking or Rockclimbing sections of HST

Good luck!

Posted: Mon Nov 13, 2006 2:48 pm
by langenbacher
The Whites are really remote and have wonderful views of the Sierras and into Nevada. No permits required. It's a long drive for you.

I think you'll need a permit in the Sierra wilderness areas, but they probably are all "self-issue" by now, which should mean you drop by the permit office any time and fill out your own permit. I think Inyo NF permits go to self-issue after Nov. 1 (eastern Sierras).

We went up to "Road's End" in Kings Canyon NP at the end of September and the permits were self-issue at the (unmanned) permit office there. There were a couple dozen cars parked there (few compared to summer), but we went up one of the less popular routes (to Sphinx Lakes) and saw only a couple of day hikers on the sphinx creek trail in 2 days. Tough hike, but very scenic. Probably not too many people on most of the trails around there now. But "Highway 180 to Cedar Grove - Closes by mid-November until spring" so call ahead.

Mineral King is very scenic, but should be closed after Nov. 1.

Posted: Mon Nov 13, 2006 4:58 pm
by mountaineer
From the Monterey you HAVE to go to the Sierra? I would do something along the Coast Ridge in the Cone Peak area. That is only about 1 1/2 hours south of you, maybe less and this time of year you probably won't see anybody.