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quick opinion on two different locations

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quick opinion on two different locations

Postby mtn.horhe » Mon Jul 16, 2012 1:50 pm

I just wanted to see what you guys thought about two different spots and which one you think would be better for my trip.

I planned on leaving from Florence lake trail head and heading up to either french canyon or was considering checking out evolution valley? Was planning on fishing for some golden trout if i went up french canyon (like puppet lake etc.) I would rather go somewhere that had amazing scenery then a place for fishing.

What level of backpacking experience do you have?
I would say level 3 or 4 (worked for forest service as a wildland firefighter for 4 years plus lots of backpacking trips)

What terrain are you comfortable/uncomfortable with?
- Class 1 terrain/trail hiking
- Class 2 terrain/pass/x-country
- Class 3 terrain/pass/x-country
- River crossings


What is your main interest?
- Lakes
- Big Mountain scenery
- Photography
- Fishing


How many days/nights is your trip, not including travel to trail head?
4-5

How many miles did you want to do a day, any layovers?
anywhere from 8-15 depending on terrain

Did you prefer a loop or out and back trip?
loop.

Will you be hiking with a dog?
No



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Re: quick opinion on two different locations

Postby nsmeier » Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:18 pm

Between those too i'd go to puppet Lake.

I've also spent time in the Marie Lakes area, which is accessible from florence, and lots of great views day hikes and even fishing around there.
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Re: quick opinion on two different locations

Postby maverick » Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:56 pm

So are you open to any place out of Florence? Or are these two places the only ones
of interest to you? Have you been to this or any other area nearby before?
Do you want to cover a large territory or basecamp from one spot?
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: quick opinion on two different locations

Postby quentinc » Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:21 pm

I love Puppet Lake but I hate the stretch of trail from Florence/JMT to Hutchinson Meadows so personally I would do Evolution. But they are both wonderful areas. If you were ambitious you might try a loop trip through the Keyhole but that might be a bit much for 4 - 5 days.
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Re: quick opinion on two different locations

Postby kpeter » Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:28 pm

Evolution seemed to me to be more spectacularly beautiful, with the lush green meadows backdropped with granite cliffs and peaks. It is also far, far more crowded. It satisfied the visual aestethics in me very well, but lacked the experience of solitude.
IMGP2090.jpg
Evolution Lake at dawn


I've hiked through all the lakes in the upper French canyon area a couple of times. I find them interesting, and the waterfall coming out of Royce Lakes on the opposite side of the canyon is scenic. I do not think they rival the photogenic qualities of Evolution Valley and Lake, however. They are generally more open and barren, but lend themselves well to cross country ambling. They are also far less crowded.
IMGP0548.jpg
The general topography in the upper French Canyon lakes area

I believe this shot is taken from the edge of the Puppet Lake plateau, looking toward L lake. I could certainly find prettier shots at less harshly lit times of day, but this illustrates why I felt the way I did.

On the other (third?) hand, I no longer fish, so I can't advise you on that. Maybe fishing will be the key criteria.
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Re: quick opinion on two different locations

Postby mtn.horhe » Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:09 pm

Thanks to everyone who replied :)

I spoke with my friend (who I am going with) and I guess he wanted to focus a little more on fishing so it looks like we will be going towards the French canyon area and probably doing a couple of day hikes to different spots to fish. I will be posting a TR afterwards and will try to get many pictures and maybe a few golden trout :D
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Re: quick opinion on two different locations

Postby SSSdave » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:01 pm

With just 4 nights, 5 days, if you indeed have chosen the French Canyon Lakes, your time would be much better spent hiking in from the usual trailhead at the Pine Creek roadend that will take just one day to reach the lake plateau instead of two. That way you will actually have a couple layover days to explore all the lakes in that basin. If so would recommend spending your night 4 up at big Royce Lake #4. That way you would get to experience some very impressive scenery, more golden trout fishing, and have shorter mileage back to the trailhead by heading down the easy cross country route to Honeymoon Lake.
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Re: quick opinion on two different locations

Postby windknot » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:52 pm

French Canyon can be strikingly pretty in the right lighting. :)

Image
A few backcountry fishing pictures: http://wanderswithtrout.wordpress.com/
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