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Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby maverick » Tue Feb 15, 2011 7:40 pm

Benson Lake, and the stretch between the end of the Matterhorn Canyon Trail
to Benson pass to me is definitely the weakest/least desirable parts of the
northern loop.
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



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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby East Side Hiker » Thu Feb 17, 2011 11:04 am

I was just thinking this over and contrasting this concept with the Sierra Secrets thread. Maverick started this with the statement that we all know the Sierra is the best (and I certainly feel that it is - I've made a life-long exploration of all the major western mountain ranges in the lower 48, and none come close to the Sierra). The Sierra Secrets concept is that you can go just about anywhere and find unique beauty. Just look at the trees!

The least desirable places in the Sierra, even including the habitats at the lowest east side trailheads, are magnificent.
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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby TehipiteTom » Thu Feb 17, 2011 11:52 am

East Side Hiker wrote:I was just thinking this over and contrasting this concept with the Sierra Secrets thread. Maverick started this with the statement that we all know the Sierra is the best (and I certainly feel that it is - I've made a life-long exploration of all the major western mountain ranges in the lower 48, and none come close to the Sierra). The Sierra Secrets concept is that you can go just about anywhere and find unique beauty. Just look at the trees!

The least desirable places in the Sierra, even including the habitats at the lowest east side trailheads, are magnificent.

On a trip I led into Bench Canyon once, there was a woman from Indiana who--early on the first day--was marveling at the great forest. And I had to admit, with a little embarrassment, that I had gotten kind of blasé about the forests in the Sierra. And she wondered how I could possibly be blasé about such magnificent forests.

Then we got to Surprise Saddle, and the whole view of the Ritter Range opened up in front of us. And she turned to me and said "okay, I understand now."
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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby East Side Hiker » Thu Feb 17, 2011 1:10 pm

I remember once doing a pretty good (month long) backpacking tour of the Grand Tetons (west and east sides), Bitteroots, Absarokas (spell?), anyway, all around the Yellowstone/Grand Teton area. I left Jackson hole at 8 am on the last morning, and drove straight to Ebbitts Pass, which I got to at 8 am the next morning. As I drove up and over Ebbitts and on westward on Hwy 4 to Pacific Valley, the thing that hit me very hard was the forests - the TREES - the TREE DIVERSITY - their SIZE. I was in all those National Parks in Wyoming and Montana (and through Idaho), and never even came close to sdeeing anything like the Sierra trees.
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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby lambertiana » Thu Feb 17, 2011 10:58 pm

Although I usually prefer the big views, as an amateur dendrologist who has lived all across this country coast to coast, I must say that the Sierra forests truly are magnificent.
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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby TehipiteTom » Fri Feb 18, 2011 7:10 am

John Muir agreed. Wish I could find the quotes I'm thinking of...but in any case, he thought the forests of the Sierra were the greatest he had ever seen.
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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby fishmonger » Fri Feb 18, 2011 10:32 am

maverick wrote:Hi Fish

I have heard from an associate about how pretty the island is, with a great trail called
GR20, but peaks at close to only 9000 ft, and the lack of beautiful pine forested land
with sequoia's, redwoods, and numerous lakes high and low, and numerous major
rivers, I do not see a comparison, even he siting some of these differences when talking
about Corsica as compared to the sierra, he did mention great rock climbing.
This person has been to the Tibet, Alaska, New Zealand, Kenya, Chile, and Argentina
to name a few places, and said that the Sierra in his opinion is still the best.


it is all relative. What's so great about Redwoods when you don't have Laricio pines, trees Napoleon already coveted for his fleet, because they were tall and straight and made enormous ship masts in their time. No pine forests? They are different, not so tall, but they are still there and very special.
I don't say I prefer Corsica, but the question was to show another place that packs dioversity into a small space. Corsica does, in a BIG way.

The problem about Corsica is that it is too small for the number of people who have discovered its beauty. Meanwhile, 9000 feet in Corsica is easily equal to 14,000 in the Sierra, because the bottom of that mountain that is 9000 feet tall happens to be sea level (which you can see from the summits)

The GR20 is as overrun as the JMT in peak season. Corsica is fantastic in June when there's still snow on much of the GR20, but there's other issues such as the lack of real protection. National Parks are really not the same in Europe. I just finished scanning over 1000 images from a few trips in the 80s that I'll be putting online soon. For now, I have just a few samples I scanned over 10 years ago
http://didnt.doit.wisc.edu/outdoor/corsica_01.html

and a lot more here:
http://didnt.doit.wisc.edu/outdoor/gallery/corse_1987/
Last edited by fishmonger on Sat Feb 19, 2011 3:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby Mike M. » Fri Feb 18, 2011 11:06 am

Fishmonger:

Wow, really pretty. Would love to see more.

Mike
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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby giantbrookie » Fri Feb 18, 2011 11:37 am

Wow, that may serve as an additional push for me to go there--the geology in Corsica is very much of interest to me.

Speaking of forests, I very much enjoy Sierran forests, but I'd have to say some parts of the Marble Mtns (in the Klamath Mtns, NW CA) are pretty good rivals. I don't recall ever hiking in a place with such a diversity of conifers.
Since my fishing (etc.) website is still down, you can be distracted by geology stuff at: http://www.fresnostate.edu/csm/ees/facu ... ayshi.html
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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby East Side Hiker » Fri Feb 18, 2011 2:11 pm

If you want to learn about how magnificent and diverse the redwood forests are, find the book "WildTrees." It will stimulate your imagination.

But really, when you think about the Sierra forests and the size of the trees, nothing compares. Hwy 88 and Hwy 108 exhibit incredible forests.
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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby fishmonger » Fri Feb 18, 2011 4:01 pm

East Side Hiker wrote:But really, when you think about the Sierra forests and the size of the trees, nothing compares.


as always, bigger is better, I suppose. Impressive, certainly, but not automatically the thing one will cherish the most. Most of my reasons for liking a particular mountain range go well beyond the numbers and superlatives. It has much more to do with experiences and a sense of returning to a place that has been good to me in the past.
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Re: Least Desirable Sierra Destinations

Postby will_jrob » Sat Feb 19, 2011 1:17 am

I agree that Sierra forest variety is impressive, and as I take longer to acclimatize I have more time to enjoy them. That said, there are times when hauling a pack thru several warm miles of mosquitoed monoculture lodgepole forest, or up a long hillside of red fir does little to inspire, as opposed to perspire.
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