TR: Alta Peak, Silliman Pass, and Mist Falls (5/28-5/31) | High Sierra Topix  

TR: Alta Peak, Silliman Pass, and Mist Falls (5/28-5/31)

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Re: End of May Overnighter to Mt. Brewer -- Route advice?

Postby ExploreABitMore » Mon Jun 01, 2015 9:09 am

franklin411 wrote:What about Goat Mountain as a dayhike? Not that long (8.5 miles one way), TONS of gain (7000'), but reportedly doable. How hard is the route-finding?


I'm thinking about day hiking that one this summer. A bit of history behind that one and sounds like the views are incredible. Grouse Lake looks like a pretty spot to check out too. If I go, I plan to start very early down low to avoid the heat - probably 3AM. The rest sounds fairly easy, just tiring, given the amount of gain.

My biggest obstacle will be motivating myself to drive around to the West side, given that I am pretty close to the East side trailheads!
Sierra Nevada, Mojave Desert, Night Sky Photography: http://www.evanthomasphoto.com/



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Re: Possible Extreme Dayhikes from Roads End / Mineral King

Postby seanr » Mon Jun 01, 2015 10:54 am

Yes, thanks to this thread, Goat Mountain is officially on my radar. My research tends to lean heavily toward dog-friendly areas, but I expect to enter Kings Canyon NP from the west side a lot in coming years and won't be surprised to find myself atop Goat Mountain relatively soon.
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Re: Possible Extreme Dayhikes from Roads End / Mineral King

Postby AlmostThere » Mon Jun 01, 2015 11:14 am

Every time someone says "extreme" I think of this guy.

https://pantilat.wordpress.com/2014/07/ ... -mountain/

He does the most rugged and arduous routes - in a day, with a camelbak. Ultra marathoners are amazing.

Extreme - like strenuous, easy, expert and so many other adjectives - is a completely subjective thing. Some people have me re-examining what I mean by them. Leor can do in a day what I will do in five...
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Re: Possible Extreme Dayhikes from Roads End / Mineral King

Postby limpingcrab » Mon Jun 01, 2015 11:42 am

If you're not set on a peak do the Rae Lakes loop in a day! I can't imagine that would be much more difficult than Goat Mountain in a day. It took a friend and I 15 hours to the minute and we're not runners or anything. A lot of pretty country to see in a day.
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Re: Possible Extreme Dayhikes from Roads End / Mineral King

Postby seanr » Mon Jun 01, 2015 1:41 pm

OP, franklin411, is done with this trip already and I'd guess will update soon, but I've been getting good ideas from the discussion.

AlmostThere wrote:Every time someone says "extreme" I think of this guy.

https://pantilat.wordpress.com/2014/07/ ... -mountain/

He does the most rugged and arduous routes - in a day, with a camelbak. Ultra marathoners are amazing.

Extreme - like strenuous, easy, expert and so many other adjectives - is a completely subjective thing. Some people have me re-examining what I mean by them. Leor can do in a day what I will do in five...


Bago is on my near-future to do list after I didn't follow through on a suggestion from someone on HST and get to it last summer. Leor's report makes it look very appealing! His speed amazes me, but his route and peak choices tend to match well with mine recently. Big scenery packed into a day! I try not to spend too many hours in the dark, but probably would be able to dayhike most of the stuff he runs with an alpine start. Anyway, this is a west side thread and he did Observation Peak from the East, but I have this report boomarked:
https://pantilat.wordpress.com/2014/07/ ... igh-route/
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Re: Possible Extreme Dayhikes from Roads End / Mineral King

Postby franklin411 » Mon Jun 01, 2015 3:49 pm

Back! I'll post pics when I get a chance, but here's a quick run-down:

Day 1: Alta Peak -- This went fine. My friend was jet-lagged and had a little altitude sickness, but we summited fine. Very little snow below 9000', and a few easy patches of snow at the summit. We could see that Mt. Brewer's South slope had a fair amount of snow on it (about 50-60% coverage), so we decided to just dayhike the rest of the trip. 14 miles + we went to the General Sherman tree.

Night 1: Lodgepole Campground -- The river was running about the same as last year, but there were more mosquitoes. Not a ton, but enough to be annoying. Most looked fairly small/young, but a few were giants.

Day 2: Rest day -- We drove to Crescent Meadow and wandered around for an hour or so. Lots of flying termites were swarming, but few mosquitoes and two bears. We also did Moro Rock and saw a couple of guys trying to hide a drone from the Ranger stationed at the top. Then we drove to Little Baldy and summited that, followed by a trip to the General Grant tree. Finally, we did Tokopah Falls, which was running stronger than last year. About 10 miles all included.

Night 2: Lodgepole Campground got a little busier with tourists and college kids.

Day 3: Mt. Silliman -- Failed due to instructions not matching conditions. The instructions all said to follow Silliman Creek until you get to Sillman Lake, then navigate the north shore, up some slabs to upper Silliman Lake, and then zigzag up to the summit. We followed the use-trail/creek through Silliman Meadow and into a marsh that my friend thought was the beginning of the slabs. I said it couldn't be the right place because the creek to the north was running strong, and this creek, rather than the trickle in the marsh, had to be Silliman Creek. So we followed the strong-running creek to a boulder-field and scrambled up to a broad, shallow lake, and then more scrambling up to a bigger, deeper lake that was its source. We couldn't figure out how it was possible to get up to the summit from there, though, because the slope looked like it was class 3+ at the top. So we headed north a little, found a big, flat marshy area with Silliman Pass to our left/north of us. We figured either way the summit was not going to happen, so we climbed the ridgeline to the southeast and got to a point where we could see the two small, unnamed lakes west of Crescent Lake and below Silliman's NW face. Got a great view, and navigated out. 14-15 miles r/t.

After much investigation, I realize what happened. We were supposed to go into the marsh my friend suggested, follow the tiny trickle that was Silliman Creek up the slabs, and proceed from there up the S slope. The problem was that Silliman Creek was dwarfed by the more significant creek-flow coming out of Little Lake. We ended up on the ridge between Little Lake and the two small lakes west of Crescent Lake.

We used the USGS Mt. Silliman map. Too bad I trusted the instructions over my cell phone GPS, which had a GPS + data signal and had us correctly placed on the map.

Night 3: Lodgepole Campground and the visitor's center was absolutely packed with tourists.

Day 4: Paradise Valley: We drove to Roads End and hiked up to the beginning of Paradise Valley. Not too many mosquitoes, but they were around. The water flow was a little stronger than last year.

Here's a map of our Mt. Silliman route. The red line is our route. The blue line is the unmarked creek, which was running with several orders of magnitude more flow than the pathetic trickle that is Silliman Creek.
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Re: Possible Extreme Dayhikes from Roads End / Mineral King

Postby Shawn » Mon Jun 01, 2015 5:04 pm

Well looks like you and your friend had a great outing with some fine views. Congrats and thanks for the follow-up.

No doubt you feel a little bummed about Silliman, but you still got up there and enjoyed the views from areas few travel. I'm supposing you were in the trees below the slabs and thus didn't see them on your way by. Looking forward to your pics.

For reference here are a couple of old pics.



base of slabs.jpg
Here is a view of the base of the slabs
base of slabs.jpg (70.77 KiB) Viewed 74 times

I'm guessing you were just inside of the treeline below
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slabs looking down.jpg
looking down the lower slabs
slabs looking down.jpg (76.58 KiB) Viewed 74 times
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Re: Possible Extreme Dayhikes from Roads End / Mineral King

Postby limpingcrab » Tue Jun 02, 2015 9:42 am

Cool! Any pics of the North Face of Mount Silliman?
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Re: Possible Extreme Dayhikes from Roads End / Mineral King

Postby franklin411 » Tue Jun 02, 2015 4:16 pm

Thanks for the pics Shawn! Yep, we were both happy with the hike in general, but we both wanted to make the summit of course. My friend actually said that the slabs in your photo might be where we started scrambling, but I said it couldn't be because the water flow coming down those slabs was a trickle, and there was a strong creek to the north that had to be Silliman Creek. Oh well. Here are some pics of interest:

Great Western Divide from Alta Peak:
pic 1.jpg
Great Western Divide. Rangers said crampons required on HST at Kaweah Gap.


Mt. Brewer from Alta Peak, which convinced us to change plans:
pic 2.jpg
Mt Brewer


Is this correct? Mt Silliman from Alta Peak.
Mt Silliman from Alta Peak.jpg
Mt. Silliman from Alta Peak


We got to the right place for the scramble to Silliman Lake, but I led us astray:
pic 3.jpg
Slabs to Silliman Lake


We scrambled up boulders and slabs on the south side of a strong-running creek to this shallow lake, which we assumed was Silliman Lake.
pic 4.jpg
Unnamed lake below NW face of Silliman


We scrambled upstream some more, and found Little Lake, which we assumed was the upper Silliman Lake.
pic 5.jpg
Little Lake


We realized that Silliman wasn't going to happen, so we kept going N to this point. Then we headed SE up a ridgeline at the base of Silliman's NW face for a better view.
pic 6.jpg
pointy rock


We headed up the ridgeline to get a look at the Great Western Divide, and had lunch.
pic 7.jpg
lunch


Last look at Silliman's NW face and the snow-covered gully above Little Lake.
pic 8.jpg
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