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Route Planning

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Re: Route Planning

Postby RoguePhotonic » Mon May 07, 2012 12:04 pm

Here is that unknown pass crossing although the High Sierra map does have this spot listed as Crystal Pass now.

Taken from Sawtooth Peak. The crossing is to the right of Amphitheater Lake:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/lyrafp/124 ... otostream/



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Re: Route Planning

Postby maverick » Mon May 07, 2012 12:40 pm

Of the 3 passes (Crystal, Cyclamen, and Bilko) Cyclamen Pass is the most involved.
With snow Bilko will be easier, the slabs on Cyclamen make snow travel precarious
especially with a heavy pack, if you break through the snow with a heavy
pack, well we know what could happen. Crystal is steep on its eastern side, but
still not as involved as CLP.
Little Five Lakes is much more scenic than BFL or Lost Canyon so you won't be missing
anything.
http://sierrabackpacker.com/SawtoothPeak.htm

Edit: 22 June -Tulainyo Lake in Wallace Lakes area is very nice, though it probably still
be frozen this early.
16 Aug - Don't miss Upper/Lower Mills Creek Lakes in Second Recess
1 Sept - Ashely Lake instead of Beck Lakes
13 Sept - What route are you taking to get to Benson from Peeler? Big Slide?
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Re: Route Planning

Postby RoguePhotonic » Mon May 07, 2012 2:42 pm

Well at least I wont have to worry much there. I thought it was a random crossing but since it's a known pass that at least says it can be done.

Now if only that was true about crossing the Black Divide, crossing from the Fourth Recess into Little Lakes Valley, Crossing the ridge North of Graveyard Lakes and then the ridge to Beetlebug Lake, or the notch West of Observation Peak, the ridge SW of Rodgers Peak, the area just SE of the summit of Mt. Lyell.

Does that cover all the locations I am going to try that I have no idea if it can be done? :confused:
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Re: Route Planning

Postby RoguePhotonic » Mon May 07, 2012 2:54 pm

Edit: 22 June -Tulainyo Lake in Wallace Lakes area is very nice, though it probably still
be frozen this early.
16 Aug - Don't miss Upper/Lower Mills Creek Lakes in Second Recess
1 Sept - Ashely Lake instead of Beck Lakes
13 Sept - What route are you taking to get to Benson from Peeler? Big Slide?


I wasn't planning to camp at Upper or Lower Mills Lakes but I certainly will be hiking by them.

I did plan to take a tour trip of the lakes around the Minarets including Ashley. I was going to take the trail towards Anona Lake and then go to Ashley - Holcomb and then spend the night at the Beck Lakes. If I did stay the night at Ashley instead I would probably not stop at the Beck Lakes at all.

From Peeler the plan was to just go down Rancheria Creek to Seavey Pass. Is there something that would be allot better? Looking at the map again it looks like there might be several cross country routes that might be interesting.

I have done Seavey Pass so I know not much to see there.

I probably should note that the reason I planned to go from Benson to Wilson Creek is I will do a detour around Smedberg Lake past Sister and then maybe down to Doe and then up to Tallulah and over the ridge back to the trail on Wilson.
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Re: Route Planning

Postby Cross Country » Mon May 07, 2012 3:13 pm

I agree with Maverick, and I think that Little 5 is a much better LO choice than BFL. There is a ranger sation there and you might find the ranger some good company. Also, I implore you to take some really light weight fishing gear with lures. Do it as a favor to yourself and for a friend - me. If you stay at Little 5 Ranger Station Lake, on your LO day you can hike (short hike) and fish Long Lake (104xx).

2 days at Guitar Lake?

South Guard is a really ugly place for a LO. Big Brewer, Sphnix (11,000 ft lake), and Reflection are beautiful places and each have good fishing.

You shouldn't miss beautiful Woods Lakes Basin. Fish the small lake on the trail. Even if you don't fish it's a great place. The basin is a great place for a LO too.

July 21. I'm going to PM you about this one.

Striped Mountain Lakes are very close to Bench Lakes. Bench L is an obvious LO spot beacuse of the famous view.

I was completely unimpressed by Ladder. Perhaps if you camp a little East of the East side of the lake you could have a great view.

McClure Meadow is famously secenic and there is a RS there too. For a LO there is a really cool little lake, basically N of there for a day hike. Nice views during your hike too.

There is my favorite view in the entire Sierra at the base of Grinnell Meadow with the Lake (not visable of course) and an incredible escarpment in the background. I would go there over any of the recesses.

Aug 25-26. Apollo, Cirque and Orchid are great places go. I wouldn't miss them.

I didn't like Soldier Lake.

What a great place is Benson.
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Re: Route Planning

Postby cgundersen » Mon May 07, 2012 3:45 pm

Hi Rogue,
I just volunteered to send you some photos of that SW ridge by Rodgers. It looks steep enough from the East and then on the West side it appears to hit a big patch of largely vertical and impassable rock (unless you're belaying). I can probably dig up shots of that Lyell-adjacent ridge, too, if you want them. I have gone over the ridge (Rodgers Pass?) north of Rodgers and it's a schlep, but it takes you over to the very pretty Marie Lakes. I think Tina Sun posted a report on the same route a while back and included helpful photos.
Although I'd have to dig deep and scan old photos, I've gone over both ridges west of Observation, and they were really no problem at all.
Finally, I did a day hike into 4th Recess from upper 3rd Recess to look for a way into Little Lakes Valley, and I did not see anything at my comfort level. But, we had a dog then, so I may have been overly cautious. Nevertheless, my recollections were that it was nothing to tackle sans ropes. I'll be curious to hear how it all pans out!
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Re: Route Planning

Postby RoguePhotonic » Mon May 07, 2012 4:26 pm

I agree with Maverick, and I think that Little 5 is a much better LO choice than BFL. There is a ranger sation there and you might find the ranger some good company. Also, I implore you to take some really light weight fishing gear with lures. Do it as a favor to yourself and for a friend - me. If you stay at Little 5 Ranger Station Lake, on your LO day you can hike (short hike) and fish Long Lake (104xx).


Lol I was just debating yesterday again on taking any fishing gear and still settled on none. My typical gear setup is about 11 ounces. When I go over the number of times I fished about 14. Times I ate fish - 3 and number of times I was able to cook fish over a fire at 1 out of 95 days. I do enjoy fishing and when I do eat them it's great but I don't think I will do enough of it to justify having that extra 11 ounces on me the whole way. I suppose I could do like one man suggested and just bring line and lures and use willow branches. :D

You think the Rangers will be out there that early? If so I will stop in and say hi for sure. My plan was to stay at the Long Lake as you say at 10,4xx. I figure it will be more remote and scenic.

2 days at Guitar Lake?


That is the plan if Traumahead comes with me. He has never been up Whitney so it would be base camp. Same deal with Wales Lake. I have stayed at Wallace Lake but never Wales so if I am solo I will spend two nights there while I summit Russell.

Both Sphinx Lakes and Big Brewer are off my planned route. Many of these places I plan to stay at mostly based off the once a week layover thing I do.

You shouldn't miss beautiful Woods Lakes Basin. Fish the small lake on the trail. Even if you don't fish it's a great place. The basin is a great place for a LO too.


That's a bit out of the way. I am going to bail off of the JMT shortly after the Woods Creek crossing and begin up into the area East of Window Peak. I then plan to cross White Fork Saddle and then White Fork Pass in a bit of a sight seeing meander. This will be my worst section in terms of resupply carrying the heaviest pack so adding any more days isn't a good option. I did plan on going to Woods Lake Basin in 2009 but that trip was too hard on me and I canceled many things along the way.

July 21. I'm going to PM you about this one.


I know Maverick has been to this lake which seems to be the most remote and seldom used area I will visit on this entire hike. Probably only a handful of people have ever even seen these lakes. The only real question is he crossed a class 3 pass further to the West. I plan to take the small saddle directly below Observation Peak to it's West. Considering Last year I went from Marion Lake to Amphitheater Lake I should be able to make it there also in a good time frame.

Striped Mountain Lakes are very close to Bench Lakes. Bench L is an obvious LO spot beacuse of the famous view.


Although slightly out of the way those lakes look like they are worth a visit but probably not on this trip since I have never been to Bench Lake.

I was completely unimpressed by Ladder. Perhaps if you camp a little East of the East side of the lake you could have a great view.


I'll explore around it some but my main goal for spending time here is to climb the Citadel.

McClure Meadow is famously secenic and there is a RS there too. For a LO there is a really cool little lake, basically N of there for a day hike. Nice views during your hike too.


I don't know if I would want to spend two days at McClure because of how many people tend to be in that valley. After hiking through it in 2009 and 2010 I was going to try and explore some more areas. I was thinking of after leaving Mcgee Lakes to climb up to the lakes just NE of Emerald Peak and then drop down their outlet to Evolution Valley below McClure Meadow. Has anyone been up to those lakes? This is certainly an area I could see becoming lazy though when you have the option to just drop down hill from Mcgee Lakes and down the valley or fight your way up and over a small pass to some random lakes.

There is my favorite view in the entire Sierra at the base of Grinnell Meadow with the Lake (not visable of course) and an incredible escarpment in the background. I would go there over any of the recesses.


I'm not sure where that meadow is. Is that below Laurel Lake? Here?:

Image

On my return trip to VVR I plan to go over Pace Col to Grinnel Lake and then back down to Mono Creek. It will be late season so I wont have the nice green I had there in 2010 but I will get to see it for sure.

Aug 25-26. Apollo, Cirque and Orchid are great places go. I wouldn't miss them.


Hmm looks like a hell of a climb up to them. Any special way to go? I'll try to find some photos also. This is an area I am certainly flexible to go more places since I will only be carrying one week of food and I can pick up more at VVR.

The whole area around Rodgers is probably the biggest guess of them all. Mainly I planned on trying to cross there so I could drop into the upper Lyell Fork and then go for an ascent of Mt. Lyell. But the question is also can Mt. Lyell be climbed from the saddle directly E of it's summit? I know you can climb up high there on your way to Lyell Col but can you actually get up and over? I was planning to cross East of it's summit then move around it's face to the NE to take the classic approach up it's North Western ridge.

Removing the idea of a summit it also seems worth wild maybe to go from Twin Island Lakes over Clinch Pass to the Marie Lakes then go over Rodgers Pass to Sluggo Pass. From there take Russell Pass down into Lyell Canyon.

I am planning on sending a resupply to VVR for that whole section but I could limit weight by picking up a couple extra days of food from Reds Meadow while I pass through if I change the route up. I'm certainly going to give it some more thought.

I have seen the ridge I want to cross from Little Lakes Valley and I think it can be done from that side but I have never seen the Western side. Worst case would be to go around by Mono Pass if it cannot be done.

So much to think about when I thought I was all done! :p
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Re: Route Planning

Postby sparky » Mon May 07, 2012 4:31 pm

Rogue, getting to mineral peak from crystal pass isnt hard, expect steep scree though. I didn't like the looks of the route down to monarch lake from mineral peak.
Last edited by sparky on Mon May 07, 2012 4:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Route Planning

Postby maverick » Mon May 07, 2012 4:36 pm

You have the option to go down Big Slide Canyon to Doe Lake or the route down to
Rock Island Lake into Crazy Mule Gulch to Doe, either way is fun.

To get to LLV you'll have to go up Second Recess, and from Upper Mills go over
Treasure Saddle to LLV. Some class 3 section but nothing difficult.
http://www.summitpost.org/treasure-peak/774925
Or if you want to climb than from 4th Recess you can climb Mount Mills "North Face"
route and then descend the "East Couloir", both class 3 routes, and you'll need an ice
axe for the North Face route.

Graveyard Pass/Silver Fox Pass discussed earlier:
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=5766&p=43748&hilit=graveyard+lakes#p43748
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=5447&p=37831&hilit=graveyard+lakes#p37831

From Hester head towards Lake 11654 head north towards the small pond on the map.
Stay high on the ridge and then descend into the bowl to the cluster of lakes that
leads to McDuffie.
Drop down to the cluster of 3 small lakes above the largest lake and head up and west
towards the the lakes under a pass that leads to Lake 11828 east of Charybdis.

From between Minnie and Anne Lake head up just under the 10800 ft contour
line to the small pond and from there do a traverse towards the trail leading
into Beetlebug Lake.

Why not Rogers Pass from Marie Lakes which will put you at Lake 11311?

Have not used the Observation Peak route.
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Re: Route Planning

Postby RoguePhotonic » Mon May 07, 2012 4:56 pm

You have the option to go down Big Slide Canyon to Doe Lake or the route down to
Rock Island Lake into Crazy Mule Gulch to Doe, either way is fun.


Now if I were to take the route past Rock Island Lake what's it like if you don't take Rock Creek into Crazy Mule Gulch and you take the route SW of the lake and down the winding unnamed creek to Benson?

To get to LLV you'll have to go up Second Recess, and from Upper Mills go over
Treasure Saddle to LLV. Some class 3 section but nothing difficult.


You sure you have your placement right on that? The High Sierra Map shows Treasure Saddle as the way between Treasure Lakes and the area above Mills Lake. This is the way I plan to take after I cross over the ridge from the Fourth Recess. It seems you would have to cross another pass from the Second Recess to reach Treasure Saddle.

Why not Rogers Pass from Marie Lakes which will put you at Lake 11311?


Well I will be at Twin Island Lakes so it was a question of where to move North out of there.

Thanks for the info. I'll keep studying up on these places.
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Re: Route Planning

Postby maverick » Mon May 07, 2012 5:28 pm

Here is an alternate route to LLV using Gabbot and Cox Col.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p4LG98w- ... /index.htm
http://www-rohan.sdsu.edu/~rlilly/High_ ... x_Col.html
http://pika.hopto.org/Mono_Recesses_2004/index.htm

Rogue wrote:
Now if I were to take the route past Rock Island Lake what's it like if you don't take
Rock Creek into Crazy Mule Gulch and you take the route SW of the lake and down
the winding unnamed creek to Benson?


Looks fine especially if descend on the eastern side except at 8500 level where you may
have to cross over, but did you not say you were going to Doe.

Oh, if you have the time than go see Orchid Lake!!!! The views towards Seven Gables
Vee Lake Basin, outstanding!!!! This was taken looking east from the smaller
Orchid Lake: http://WildernessApertures.com/p1003266800

Rogue wrote:
I know Maverick has been to this lake which seems to be the most remote and seldom
used area I will visit on this entire hike. Probably only a handful of people have ever
even seen these lakes


As are the lakes of Red Spur Lakes Basin (my name).
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Re: Route Planning

Postby RoguePhotonic » Mon May 07, 2012 9:49 pm

Some interesting route ideas there but I think if it came down to it I would rather go out over Mono through the Fourth Recess because I have seen the Grinnell Lakes area, Hopkins, Pioneer Basin and I will pass through Second Rescess on this trip. That just leaves a tour of the last two.

Your link to Orchid Lake photos aren't working for me.

I would only be going to Doe Lake after that section once I leave Benson.
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