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TR--6 day hikes in 4 days in Yosemite

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TR--6 day hikes in 4 days in Yosemite

Postby balzaccom » Sun Aug 23, 2009 1:57 pm

Just back from four great days...while we often backpack, this time we decided to do some day hikes and see a variety of terrain in a short period of time.

We were stunned to see how many campsites were available on 8/19 at 1:30 p.m. We got a good site at Porcupine Flat, and I think there may have been sites at TM still open. Amazing.

By 2:30 we had set up camp and headed up to May Lake. From the Lake we wanted to try the new trail up Mt. Hoffman, and worked our way up to the top. The trail is pretty basic--not a huge improvement over a use trail, if you ask me. And it is supposedly one of the keystones to the Yosemite Trail project. hmmph. But the views from Hoffman are as good as any in the park---with majestic scenes of the Sierra Crest, the fire in the GCT, and lakes galore. We managed to get back to camp in time for a nice dinner...but the altitude change from sea level to 11K really bothered my wife. SO we decided that the next day would be a lay-day...

Which for us meant ten miles up and down Lyell Canyon, stopping to fish, read, and relax. It really was a great day--the fishing was decent for very small fish, but the big boys were pretty wary in the middle of the day. And we got back to the car just in time for me to take my wife to dinner at the Tuolumne Lodge. That scored points.

Later that night, she announced the presence of huge blisters on each foot, so we decided on yet another quiet day. We set her up with new boots and better socks...and headed up to Polly Dome Lakes. This is a short hike, but supposedly involved a little xcountry work. There is some great glacial granite on this trail...really beautiful. And the xcountry was non-existent. The use trail was very clear all the way to the lake. A nice way to start the day...and the new shoes and socks worked well enough that we could make more plans.

We went to Saddlebag Lake and ate our lunch overlooking Conness, and then drove to Mono Lake to wander through the tufa. The climate difference between Tioga Pass and Mono Lake has to be experienced to be believed!

And on the way back, we stopped long enough to hike up to Gaylor Lakes, with their beautiful plateau and views of the Cathedral Range and Mt. Hoffman. We also managed to go over to Granite Lakes, which are also lovely. We were back at the car by 6:30 and ready for dinner and bed!

The last day we went out to North Dome on the Indian Rock trail, back on the Tehamite Creek trail. We saw quite a few groups of young people backpacking in the area...but only a couple of dayhikers on their way downhill into the valley. This is a decent hike with some stunning views at the end...and from the arch at Indian Rock. The Clark Range is all in view there, and North Dome puts you right in the face of Half Dome, Glacier Point, and Clouds' Rest/Tenaya Canyon.

WE were back at the car by 1:45 and back home showering by 6:30

It was a great way to spend four days! Here’s link to the photos:

http://picasaweb.google.com/balzaccom/Y ... ayHikes09#
Balzaccom

check out our website: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/



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Re: TR--6 day hikes in 4 days in Yosemite

Postby maverick » Sun Aug 23, 2009 2:14 pm

Nice! You really did do some hiking in some diverse terrain.
Cool shot of May Lake from above, and of Indian Rock. Thanks
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Re: TR--6 day hikes in 4 days in Yosemite

Postby The Other Tom » Sun Aug 23, 2009 6:01 pm

Thanks for posting. We did a similar trip in mid July. You're correct about the climate difference between Mono Lake and Tioga Pass.
We went to May Lake, but I didn't realize there was a new trail up Mt. Hoffman. I'll have to give it a try next time.
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Re: TR--6 day hikes in 4 days in Yosemite

Postby balzaccom » Sun Aug 23, 2009 6:30 pm

Give it a try, Tom, but don't expect too much! It's a pretty basic trail...
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