TR: Lake Sabrina to Moonlight Falls 7/18 – 7/20/2017

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MRrogers
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TR: Lake Sabrina to Moonlight Falls 7/18 – 7/20/2017

Post by MRrogers » Fri Aug 18, 2017 12:47 pm

This trip was the first two nighter for my 9 year old son, Alec. Last year we did our first one nighter together at the lakes basin at Saddlebag Lake.
We got our wilderness permits from the Mammoth Lakes Ranger Station and we were informed by the ranger that people were cancelling their trips to the Blue Lake area due to heavy mosquitos. We said no problem for us because we came prepared for the little devils with long pants, long sleeved shirts and head nets.
We spend the night before the hike in the Lake Sabrina campground and enjoyed fishing in the creek that runs along the side of the campsites and also spent some time conversing with the awesome camp host, Lester. Had some hot dogs, mac and cheese and s’mores which made a great evening.
The hike the next morning started off with a bang. We ran into a crew stocking the creek with fish on the road that leads to the trailhead at Lake Sabrina. My son almost fell over when he saw them bump the fish into the creek.
Link to video:
https://youtu.be/b7bsll-eiIM

The hike up to Blue Lake was a bit of a chore for my son (up 1500 ft), but we managed to make it in a few hours. We had one significant creek crossing at creek that runs out of George Lake.
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Here are some views along the trail to Blue Lake.
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Since we were literally and figuratively “getting our feet wet” regarding creek crossings, we decided to not try the log jam crossing at Blue Lake’s outlet and instead waded across the outlet.
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After lunch, we tried a bit of fishing and hunted for our campsite which we found along the western side of the lake. After setting up camp, we fished some more and my son caught two nice trout. He was ecstatic.
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As dusk came, the mosquito activity ratcheted up to a 4 out of 5 so we retreated to our tent for an hour and half of card playing. We wound up cooking dinner in the tent also due to the little devils.
I took some night sky photos around 10 pm and then put the camera on interval mode and took two hours worth of images to make a time lapse.
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Link to video:
https://youtu.be/Gjj8bnmS7uk

Some mosquitos were still out in the morning, so we also cooked breakfast in the tent. We packed up and started out hike to Moonlight Falls around 10 am. This journey required a few creek crossings, one at the inlet to Dingleberry Lake, one about a mile about Dingleberry and another just before Moonlight Falls.
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The hike to Moonlight Falls was only 3 miles and up only about 500 feet which made the hike much easier than the first day. We had to put on the head nets a few times during the hike and encountered a few areas of hiking on snow that covered the trail.
We made it to the falls my midafternoon and we were greeted by wonderful site at the falls.
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The area is quite exquisite and I cannot really compare the falls to another falls that I have seen in the high sierra.

I was even able to chill my Blue Moon in snowpack.
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Moonlight Lake had about 15% ice coverage still. We did not encounter any other hikers or campers the entire day. Complete solitude and no mosquitos! Again, I took some night sky photos and here is time lapse video.
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Link to video:
https://youtu.be/oKzpMyH-p0s

In the morning we hiked up towards Hungry Packer Lake before heading back down the trail.
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We stopped for lunch at the outlet of Blue Lake.
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This time we crossed on the log jam at the outlet.
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My son’s feet were pretty tired along the hike out but the anticipation of ice cream in Bishop kept him moving. We didn’t even bother to take off our boots for the last two creek crossings.
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Overall an outstanding trip and a beautiful and priceless time along with my son.
I must say that I haven’t seen too many trip reports from Moonlight Falls and I would encourage more people to explore this area. Since its route does not meet up with the JMT, it seems that traffic is low and that makes this area a real gem!
Hope you enjoy the report.








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maverick
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Re: TR: Lake Sabrina to Moonlight Falls 7/18 – 7/20/2017

Post by maverick » Fri Aug 18, 2017 1:33 pm

We got our wilderness permits from the Mammoth Lakes Ranger Station and we were informed by the ranger that people were cancelling their trips to the Blue Lake area due to heavy mosquitos. We said no problem for us because we came prepared for the little devils with long pants, long sleeved shirts and head nets.
Mosquitoes can be annoying, but preplanning to deal with them will make your trip enjoyable. Mosquitoes, wildflowers, and run-off, go hand in hand, so they will never deter me from going out into the wilderness, and if your 9 year old son can deal with them, most people should be able to also. :)

Thank you for the TR and pictures, Midnight Falls had a nice flow, Sailor Lake is my favorite in that area. Nice morning shot at HPL. :thumbsup:
Professional Sierra Landscape Photographer

I don't give out specific route information, my belief is that it takes away from the whole adventure spirit of a trip, if you need every inch planned out, you'll have to get that from someone else.

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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KevinDo
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Re: TR: Lake Sabrina to Moonlight Falls 7/18 – 7/20/2017

Post by KevinDo » Fri Aug 18, 2017 1:57 pm

Thanks for sharing! Looks like you guys had a blast. That waterfall with the stars behind it is gorgeous!!

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cslaght
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Re: TR: Lake Sabrina to Moonlight Falls 7/18 – 7/20/2017

Post by cslaght » Fri Aug 18, 2017 2:02 pm

What a great time, and amazing pics! I plan on taking my boys soon, so I'll have to show them this.
The milky way over the falls is sublime.
"The mountains are calling, but can't find my phone"

Charles

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MRrogers
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Re: TR: Lake Sabrina to Moonlight Falls 7/18 – 7/20/2017

Post by MRrogers » Tue Jan 22, 2019 1:52 pm

Hi all. I finally finished making a video of this trip. Hope you enjoy it. Link to Youtube video:
https://youtu.be/znJVAIV_oHk

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gary c.
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Re: TR: Lake Sabrina to Moonlight Falls 7/18 – 7/20/2017

Post by gary c. » Wed Jan 23, 2019 11:36 am

Really nice! Memories that will last him forever.
"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
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Re: TR: Lake Sabrina to Moonlight Falls 7/18 – 7/20/2017

Post by sekihiker » Wed Jan 23, 2019 1:14 pm

Looks like you had a great time. I enjoyed the video and your report. Thanks.

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