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Mosquito Flats to ?

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Mosquito Flats to ?

Postby mikewest2012 » Sat Jul 30, 2016 10:20 am

First, thank you for providing this forum, I don't hike much (I have done Whitney twice), but I really enjoy reading and looking at all the epic photos in the trip reports. So, I kind of get to "hike" vicariously through y'all! However, it's been a few years since I've been to the Sierras and I'm considering a 2 night trip (I'm in SoCal), probably leaving from Mosquito Flats, probably over Mono or Morgan pass (but I'm open to suggestions). I've hiked through the beautiful lake-dotted valley up toward one of the passes (been a long time, don't remember which one) on a day-hike, but a sudden thunder/lightning/hailstorm thwarted our efforts to get to the pass. We were on an exposed granite slope heading toward the pass and felt a bit "exposed' when the lightning started so we turned and ran down the trail back to Mosquito Flats. Anyway, since I only have 2 nights I wanted to do a hike where you get a lot of bang for the buck (lakes, streams, hiking over a pass) so I thought this might be a good choice. What I'm wondering is, once I get to (Morgan or Mono) pass, where is a good place to camp the first and second nights before heading back to Mosquito Flats? I want to hike at a leisurely pace, say 7-10 miles/day. Since I've done Whitney and been up to Kearsarge pass as well, I'm not a stranger to hiking over a few passes so I know my limitations (basically hiking pretty slow and taking numerous breaks). That's pretty much it, any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks!



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Re: Mosquito Flats to ?

Postby balzaccom » Sat Jul 30, 2016 8:50 pm

Mono Pass is about five miles from the trailhead. There isn't great camping here until you get down to Fourth Recess lake...about another 3 miles in. So this might meet your requirements. The trail is pretty good...works up past a series of views over Little Lakes Valley, and then Ruby lake about 3.5 miles in.

Of course, if you hike up Morgan Pass, you have all of Little lakes Valley as scenery on the way.

Another option might be Piute Pass out of North lake. The trail takes you past a lovely series of lakes up to the Pass, and once over the pass, it's all downhill to Upper Golden Trout Lake, with a bevy of other nice lakes in the vicinity.

We have trip logs and photos for both of these trips on our website: backpackthesierra.com
Balzaccom

check out our website: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/
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Re: Mosquito Flats to ?

Postby Bruce B » Sat Jul 30, 2016 9:27 pm

I've enjoyed going over Mono Pass and camping at Fourth Recess Lake. It was quite pretty and had nice campsites on both sides of the lake. If you're ok with a short off-trail section, you could camp at Laurel Lake or Grinnell Lake the second night. I didn't see a soul when I camped at Laurel Lake, although it's along the Sierra High Route so I'm sure it gets some traffic.
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Re: Mosquito Flats to ?

Postby mikewest2012 » Sun Jul 31, 2016 10:16 am

Thank you Balzaccom and Bruce B. for the epic suggestions! I will definitely be researching and exploring the links etc. you provided to get a better feel for those areas. I did read Bruce B's Golden Trout TR and beautiful pics (Ozzie looks pretty awesome!) on the forums and that looks like an exciting option as well. Can't wait to get back up to the Sierra, if only for a few days. I do have one more question, do you know if and what type of permits are required for Morgan/Mono passes and Golden Trout Wilderness? I could probably find it online, but if you have any suggestions on where to find that info, it would save me a lot of time on searches. The only permit I ever got was for Whitney, so I'm not too familiar with the ins and outs. Thanks again.
Mike
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Re: Mosquito Flats to ?

Postby Bruce B » Sun Jul 31, 2016 11:35 am

Permits are required for overnight trips in the Inyo National Forest. Info and online reservations here:

http://www.recreation.gov/permits/Inyo_National_Forest_Wilderness_Permits/r/wildernessAreaDetails.do?page=detail&contractCode=NRSO&parkId=72203

National Parks have their own permit system, but the areas you mentioned are all Inyo National Forest.
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