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TR: Kearsarge Pass & Mt Bago 7/22/15

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TR: Kearsarge Pass & Mt Bago 7/22/15

Postby tie » Wed Aug 05, 2015 11:38 pm

7/22/2015 Kearsarge Pass & Mt Bago from Road's End

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Story:
My original target was to run to Kearsarge Pass, climb Mt Gould and traverse across the ridge to Mt Rixter. Maybe then Glen Pass and the Rae Lakes loop. The run started well enough, at 6am. The rain from the evening before turned the trail's sand into a nice running surface. I came across a big lanky black bear, 15 feet off the trail to my left. Then—scrambling noises to my right. Just off the trail, a baby bear had climbed a tree, and was grasping it, looking at me in the classic koala pose. Very photogenic. But I do have a little common sense. :) Sorry, no photos; you'll have to use your imagination.

The Sphinx
Going up. Notice that the stream is barely flowing…
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View back toward the canyon
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The ferns along the trail were soaking wet, roughly between miles 5 and 8.

Mist rising from the meadow as the sun first hits
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East Vidette
Every time I'm here, I take this same photo
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Kearsarge Lakes
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University Peak from Kearsarge Pass :)
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I took the lower trail to Kearsarge Pass. But at the pass the clouds covered everything. There wasn't much point in climbing Gould in the clouds, and they would make routefinding the traverse to Rixter difficult. So I turned back, taking the higher trail. Wow!

Awesome trail
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Bullfrog Lake
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I decided instead to climb Mount Bago. Basically, go from the bowl up to the northern ridge (red-orange in the pictures), then walk up the ridge to the summit.

Target: Mt Bago
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Getting there…
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Woot!
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I hung out on the peak for a long time. The views east toward Kearsarge were fantastic, even if clouds obscured the other directions.

View back toward Kearsarge
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View toward King's Canyon
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Views toward East Lake
You can see the problem…
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Clouds blowing in
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Skypilot
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As clouds overtook the summit, I headed down. The rain held off until I was just above Lower Vidette Meadow, but then it rained, and it rained hard, for most of the way down. It was warm rain, so I didn't bother with my jacket. I got soaked, completely drenched. The trail was a river, which made for tricky footing.

But the rain stopped, mostly, in time for me to photograph the Sphinx again.

The Sphinx
Tons of water!
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I took the southern side trail back to Road's End. It is a bit over half a mile longer, but is very pretty, and is mostly runnable.

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I got back early. It was a shorter day than I'd planned—38 miles, mostly runnable—but you can't control the weather. I was glad to have gotten to see the Bullfrog and Kearsarge Lakes area.



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tie
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Re: TR: Kearsarge Pass & Mt Bago 7/22/15

Postby dapperdave » Thu Aug 06, 2015 6:05 am

Tie,

Another nice TR, I agree with you about the high trail from Kearsarge to the JMT, until last summer, I had always chosen the low, but now I'm converted.

Dave
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Re: TR: Kearsarge Pass & Mt Bago 7/22/15

Postby justkeepexploring » Thu Aug 06, 2015 11:03 am

Fantastic trip report and incredible photos! Nice work and thank you for sharing. Another spot to add to my never ending bucket list!
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Re: TR: Kearsarge Pass & Mt Bago 7/22/15

Postby rams » Mon Aug 10, 2015 8:55 pm

Nice pics! I hiked Mt. Bago yesterday and gotta say that those clouds in your shots make it much more interesting than the totally clear skies we had (well...clear except for the smoke from the Rough Fire).
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Re: TR: Kearsarge Pass & Mt Bago 7/22/15

Postby windknot » Wed Aug 12, 2015 2:34 pm

Great shots! Man, I feel like a less evolved breed of human next to you trail runners. Thanks for sharing.
A few backcountry fishing pictures: http://wanderswithtrout.wordpress.com/
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Re: TR: Kearsarge Pass & Mt Bago 7/22/15

Postby bravefanla » Thu Aug 13, 2015 10:07 pm

I always take the low trail on the way in to Vedette, East Lake, et al but always take the high trail on the way out in case I want to do a quick trip to Charlotte Lake. Great views from the high trail.
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