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High Sierra Trail - Extra loop

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High Sierra Trail - Extra loop

Postby Dozer » Wed Jun 24, 2015 12:24 pm

Hello, I'm new to the group and seeking information. We live in VT and will be heading out to do the High Sierra Trail in August. While we hike frequently in the east, this is our 1st Hike in the Sierra Nevada Mt's. So any insight would be helpful. Based on shuttle rides, etc., it looks like we will have an extra day or two that can be added to the hike. In the map that we got from the NPS (Tom Harrison Maps of Sequoia and Kings Canyon) there is a loop that looks to be about 14 miles and leaves the HST at junction meadow, through the upper kern river, over to lake south america and rejoins the JMT near Tyndall Creek. We would then take the JMT back to where it joins the HST and then out over Whitney to Whitney Portal. We are curious about this loop and wondering what the trail conditions/trail marking's are like or any other information that folks could provide. Thanks much - Dozer



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Re: High Sierra Trail - Extra loop

Postby maverick » Wed Jun 24, 2015 12:46 pm

Hi Dozer,

Welcome to HST! Please read: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=4205
When you find some tome an intro would be appreciated: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=9329
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: High Sierra Trail - Extra loop

Postby MountainMinstrel » Wed Jun 24, 2015 6:55 pm

And you might want to check out this tread for a 10 crossing that I will be doing starting August 29.
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=12521
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Re: High Sierra Trail - Extra loop

Postby Dozer » Thu Jun 25, 2015 10:26 am

Hello, as a newbie, I just wanted to take a minute to introduce myself and adhere to the sites protocol. Sorry for not seeing this to begin with. Also, it wasn't clear to me where to post this info. So, hope I hit the right spot. Correct me if I didn't. Thanks for the direction and for the info that your site provides. All the best ~ Dozer

What level of backpacking experience do you have? Level 3 for both Sherry and I. We have both thru hiked the Long Trail and hike regularly in the northeast. Most often on trails with an occasional bush-whacking trip when we're feeling adventurous. We hike in all 4 seasons in VT.
Level 1- Minimal hiking
Level 2- Some backpacking trips, using trails
Level 3- Numerous backpacking trips, some x-country travel
Level 4- Comfortable with trail and/or x-country travel

What terrain are you comfortable/uncomfortable with? Well, as we hike extensively in the northeast, the terrain vary's from mud to mountains. This is our first trip to the Sierra Nevada Mt's so a new experience for us. I like to err on the side of caution, so class 2.
- Class 1 terrain/trail hiking
- Class 2 terrain/pass/x-country
- Class 3 terrain/pass/x-country
- River crossings
- Snow travel/Glacier crossings

What is your main interest? We want to experience the splendor of the Sierra Nevada Mt's. The HST gives us some variety of the items listed below. Finishing on Mt. Whitney will be Epic for us.
- Lakes
- Forests
- Big Mountain scenery
- Photography
- Fishing
- Climbing

How many days/nights is your trip, not including travel to trailhead? We will be hiking around the Lodgepole area for a couple of days and start the HST on 8/24. Our shuttle ride picks us up in Whitney Portal on the morning of 8/31.

How many miles did you want to do a day, any layovers? we generally are comfortable with 10-14 mile days in the northeast.

Do you have a route logistics preference: loop, out and back, point to point (which
may require 2 vehicles or hitchhiking)? just hiking the HST with a possible extended loop along the Kern river to the Lake South America Trail, back to the JMT, and then through Crabtree Meadow to Mt. Whitney.

Is there a particular area in the Sierra that your most interested in(Yosemite, SEKI
western sierra start or eastern start ect.)? see above

Will you be hiking with a dog? we like dogs, but do not hike with one.
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Re: High Sierra Trail - Extra loop

Postby maverick » Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:45 am

Your views are pretty limited in the lower part of that trail, but it opens up as you get higher up, and it is easy to follow. The highlight of this trail IMO, is that it gives access to places like Milestone Creek, Thunder Mtn. Creek, and the whole Lake South America region.

Once your are heading south the JMT, you will have some great views of the Sierra Crest to the east, and experience the stark beauty of the Bighorn Plateau.

The 3.4 mile section between the Kern and Tyndall section is pretty, there are some pretty, small lakes on the southern side, about 1.2 miles in, if you need a place to camp.

You probably will see no one else in this section, but in contrast expect quite a few on the JMT, especially at Wallace Creek and beyond.

You listed fishing, is that correct, if yes, I will PM you a location. :)
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: High Sierra Trail - Extra loop

Postby Dozer » Thu Jun 25, 2015 12:15 pm

Awesome Maverick, thank you! Just what we were looking for. Sounds very nice! I appreciate the fishing tip, but due to the air distance and logistics of our trip, we are traveling light so probably no fishing. All the best ~ Dozer
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Re: High Sierra Trail - Extra loop

Postby MountainMinstrel » Thu Jun 25, 2015 12:40 pm

Dozer, you can trust Mavericks advise.

When in August are you going?
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Re: High Sierra Trail - Extra loop

Postby maverick » Thu Jun 25, 2015 12:49 pm

Please write us up a TR, including some pictures, when you get back, would love to read about your adventure. :nod:
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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