TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop | High Sierra Topix  

TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

If you've been searching for the best source of information and stimulating discussion related to Spring/Summer/Fall backpacking, hiking and camping in the Sierra Nevada...look no further!
User avatar

TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby Clc9 » Fri Aug 14, 2015 1:18 pm

Hi Folks,

Never been more than a lurker here but I replied to a PM from someone regarding some Thousand Island/Garnet/Ediza Lake questions and they found the response helpful and suggested I share it here in case anyone else had questions or could benefit from this.

Below is my reply regarding a loop hike that I did with a somewhat inexperienced (though very fit) group. The itinerary in a nutshell is:

Day 1: PCT High Trail to TI Lake (camp north side of lake at about half way to the end of lake)
Day 2: Use trail to west side of TI Lake, x-country over saddle to small lake above Garnet (camp at high spot above Garnet lake)
Day 3: Whitebark Pass x-country to Nydiver lakes then down to Ediza Lake (camp Ediza Lake)
Day 4: Shadow Creek trail back to Agnew Meadows

I led a group on a 4-day/3-night trek and it was fantastic! We hiked out on the PCT High trail to Thousand Island Lake..it was a beautiful trail and yes, it has fantastic views across the valley to Shadow Lake, the Minaret Range as well as Banner/Ritter. I would definitely recommend the high trail for its beauty. We camped on the north side of Thousand Island lake the first night and it was very nice, though a bit crowded.

Day 2 we continued to hike to the west side of Thousand Island Lake and went over the off-trail saddle to a little lake above Garnet Lake. It is a very easy traverse and nice to get off the beaten path. Night 2 we spent at a beautiful site above Garnet Lake. We didn't hike down to Garnet Lake proper as we wanted to maintain our elevation but our site was at the far west side looking over the entirety of Garnet...stunning lake and not another person in sight. We did meet some folks that base camped at Garnet and had nothing but great things to say about the lake. I didn't get the impression that it was crowded either.

Day 3 we went off trail again over Whitebark Pass (difficult with 30+lbs packs) over to the Nydiver Lakes then down to Ediza Lake for Night 3. We got into Ediza around 2:30-3:00 and it was already getting difficult to find a site. That said...I needed space for several tents. If you have one or two you should be fine. There are lots of spots at Ediza up in the trees but we were able to get one at the far end of the campable area very close to the lake. With that said, Ediza Lake and the area around it is one of the most beautiful backcountry sites I have ever been to. While there were certainly more people present it was such a beautiful place that I can not help but recommend it. The panoramas alone are worth at least going by there.

Day 4 we hiked out the Shadow Creek trail by Shadow lake and back to Agnew Meadows. Hiking out was pretty much all downhill....all I can say is that I am glad I was not going up it! While the PCT High Trail had a lot of switchbacks to gain elevation it eventually flattened out and was not hard going. The Shadow Creek trail to Ediza is pretty much uphill the whole way. I can't speak to the river trail though.

I would summarize your question as Ediza = Amazing Vistas but more crowded and Garnet = Very nice vistas (not quite Ediza) but fewer people than Ediza...which might even out the score depending on what you are looking for. If I had to choose a trail out of Thousand Island Lakes I would probably choose the high trail as it had spectacular views and was a very nice walk. When all is said and done, the area is so amazing that I think you will have a fantastic trip any way go.

-----------------------------------------------------

Hopefully this is of help to someone planning a trip to the area. This was my first time there and I was blown away by the beauty. Having backpacked in AK, CO, TX, NM, AZ, NH, ME, and Canada this sits at the top of my list without hesitation! I will definitely be back for something longer next time.

If you have any follow-up questions please do not hesitate to PM me and I am more than happy to share any information I may have with you.



User avatar
Clc9
Topix Novice
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed May 27, 2015 3:14 pm
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby Scouter9 » Mon Aug 17, 2015 6:34 am

Thanks for posting! What a great route!
User avatar
Scouter9
Topix Regular
 
Posts: 145
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 9:23 am
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby maverick » Mon Aug 17, 2015 8:36 am

Hi Cic9,

Welcome to HST! Thank you for you first post and TR. :) Any chance you wil be adding some photo's to your TR? :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
User avatar
maverick
Forums Moderator
Forums Moderator
 
Posts: 8033
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 5:54 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby Clc9 » Tue Aug 18, 2015 8:21 am

Glad to. Here are a few links to shots from the trip

Hiking buddy on PCT High Trail looking over the area we would be hiking in the following days:
http://i876.photobucket.com/albums/ab32 ... 5r59ba.jpg

This was a shot as we first came into the Thousand Island area from the Hight Trail:
http://i876.photobucket.com/albums/ab32 ... djjphu.jpg

And the view from my tent on night one at TI Lake:
http://i876.photobucket.com/albums/ab32 ... bejzki.jpg

Night 2 campsite above Garnet was just awesome...with Whitebark pass is the distance:
http://i876.photobucket.com/albums/ab32 ... awgm0n.jpg

This camp site sat at a nice elevation above Garnet lake and the view was just spectacular:
http://i876.photobucket.com/albums/ab32 ... rax78m.jpg

Here is the top of Whitebark...excuse my finger...almost all my pics from the top had some amount of my finger over the lens! We came up the "chute" at the far left side of the pass (when approaching from the north side). It was intense with heavy packs but absolutely worth it in the end:
http://i876.photobucket.com/albums/ab32 ... tmcmid.jpg

And looking south to the upper skydiver lake as we started to descend from the pass:
http://i876.photobucket.com/albums/ab32 ... mr2jnr.jpg

Our last night was at Ediza...we had a fantastic site there and an amazing rock outcropping for our living room:
http://i876.photobucket.com/albums/ab32 ... 7dkmke.jpg

View from my tent on our last day:
http://i876.photobucket.com/albums/ab32 ... tena4z.jpg

Here is a panorama as we started the trail heading back to Agnew Meadows:
http://i876.photobucket.com/albums/ab32 ... kkkv2m.jpg

I'm posting this with my fingers crossed that the links work as I on a cell phone with no access to a laptop.
User avatar
Clc9
Topix Novice
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed May 27, 2015 3:14 pm
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby Clc9 » Tue Aug 18, 2015 8:43 am

Okay...just a heads up that any typos are courtesy of the old iPhone autocorrect! Just noticed it turned the Nydiver lakes to skydiver...

In any case....it is an awesome place with correct spelling or not!
User avatar
Clc9
Topix Novice
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed May 27, 2015 3:14 pm
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby LightRanger » Tue Aug 18, 2015 10:00 am

Clc9 wrote:Glad to. Here are a few links to shots from the trip

Hiking buddy on PCT High Trail looking over the area we would be hiking in the following days:
Image

This was a shot as we first came into the Thousand Island area from the Hight Trail:
Image

And the view from my tent on night one at TI Lake:
Image

Night 2 campsite above Garnet was just awesome...with Whitebark pass is the distance:
Image

This camp site sat at a nice elevation above Garnet lake and the view was just spectacular:
Image

Here is the top of Whitebark...excuse my finger...almost all my pics from the top had some amount of my finger over the lens! We came up the "chute" at the far left side of the pass (when approaching from the north side). It was intense with heavy packs but absolutely worth it in the end:
Image

And looking south to the upper skydiver lake as we started to descend from the pass:
Image

Our last night was at Ediza...we had a fantastic site there and an amazing rock outcropping for our living room:
Image

View from my tent on our last day:
Image

Here is a panorama as we started the trail heading back to Agnew Meadows:
Image

I'm posting this with my fingers crossed that the links work as I on a cell phone with no access to a laptop.


Helped you out. Took your links and did the following: [img]photo%20url[/img]

:)
User avatar
LightRanger
Topix Acquainted
 
Posts: 61
Joined: Sun May 20, 2012 5:07 pm
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby Clc9 » Tue Aug 18, 2015 10:04 am

Awesome, thanks!
User avatar
Clc9
Topix Novice
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed May 27, 2015 3:14 pm
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby maverick » Tue Aug 18, 2015 11:09 am

Now it feels complete! :) How do those socks work for you?
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
User avatar
maverick
Forums Moderator
Forums Moderator
 
Posts: 8033
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 5:54 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby Clc9 » Tue Aug 18, 2015 12:41 pm

The Injinji socks have been fantastic for me. I've started using them for all hiking and trail running. I've used a bunch of socks over the years including Wright socks and various brands of merino wool (all with their merits) but these have been best for my feet so far. No blisters the entire trip. The only downside is that they take a bit longer to put on.
User avatar
Clc9
Topix Novice
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed May 27, 2015 3:14 pm
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby maverick » Tue Aug 18, 2015 12:47 pm

The Injinji socks have been fantastic for me. I've started using them for all hiking and trail running. I've used a bunch of socks over the years including Wright socks and various brands of merino wool (all with their merits) but these have been best for my feet so far. No blisters the entire trip. The only downside is that they take a bit longer to put on.


Thanks for that info. Were they difficult to adjust to? Is sizing even more important, especially so that there is no excessive material between the toes? Do they breathe better or about the same as regular sock? Are they less warm, like gloves are compared to mitts?
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
User avatar
maverick
Forums Moderator
Forums Moderator
 
Posts: 8033
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 5:54 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby Clc9 » Tue Aug 18, 2015 8:34 pm

Great questions!

So the first pair I purchased was their original weight crew socks in black so I could wear them to work with business casual attire to determine if i even liked the feel of the socks. When I ordered them I used Amazon and got both a medium and large so I could see how both fit. I am a 10.5 and could have easily gone either way but I liked the fit of the size large better and don't notice any extra material between my toes. I think that is a problem for some folks though based on the reviews I read prior to purchase.

After wearing them for a couple weeks I decided I liked the feel and was ready to dive in. I purchased the mid weight trail xtralife version which is a mini-crew but works perfectly with my high top boots (TNF ultra fastpack boots). I used these socks for training hikes and trail runs and that is when I decided I was hooked and bought another pair. So the adjustment was fairly easy in my opinion once I found that I didn't mind having the extra bulk between my toes.

I feel like they let my feet breath better than merino wool socks, which I was using previously (icebreaker and smartwool). These are a polyester/nylon/Lycra end. That was part of the reason I started looking into other sock options in the first place. I feel like my feet sweat excessively and the wool just wasn't working for me....though I love all my smartwool and icebreaker shirts. I also had a short stint with wright socks in between the merino wool and injinjis but they were not quite perfect for me so I moved on.

As to whether they are more like gloves or mittens I don't think I couldn't really say based on my limited experience with them. I live in a very hot and humid Florida climate so I haven't really been able test them out in the cold. When we did the trail the temps never really got lower that the 40s so it wasn't cold enough for me to notice a difference. I did bring a regular pair of smartwool hiking socks for sleeping in but never ended up needing them and I was just using a Sierra designs quilt...it was more than warn enough. I feel like the a pair of standard merino wool socks would be warmer overall but I really have not tested them in that fashion

I hope this helps a little...this is definitely more than I have ever written about a pair of socks!
User avatar
Clc9
Topix Novice
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed May 27, 2015 3:14 pm
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: TR: PCT High Trail, TI Lake/Garnet/Ediza Loop

Postby maverick » Wed Aug 19, 2015 10:09 am

Thank you for the review of the socks, very informative and helpful.
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
User avatar
maverick
Forums Moderator
Forums Moderator
 
Posts: 8033
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 5:54 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer


Return to Backpacking / Hiking / Camping



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bkoenig, MSNbot Media [Bot] and 10 guests