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Devil's Punchbowl to Schoolmarm Lake via Devil's Saddle

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Re: Devil's Punchbowl to Schoolmarm Lake via Devil's Saddle

Postby sekihiker » Fri Mar 01, 2013 8:56 pm

Here is a link to a trip report that discusses the first part of your proposed hike. ... index.html

There are a dozen reports of hikes in this general area at:

The LeConte/White Divide is one of my favorite areas. Feel free to email me if you need details.

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Re: Devil's Punchbowl to Schoolmarm Lake via Devil's Saddle

Postby SSSdave » Sat Mar 02, 2013 11:51 am

That route is of course vaguely described in my decades old copy of Wilderness Press Sierra South. Recall reading how people have had trouble with that route over the years and a look at the topo shows why. Most people don't use their map much while cross country and instead tend to do everything by sight which to this person is not wise and this is a textbook example. I do not recall my route down as it was a long time ago. However do recall it was NOT the direct route at each steep zone which is how most only using visuals tend to attack routes. We did that route in late July 1981. I copied the Acme online topo and then drew a red line that is the way my mind works now and probably back then too as it is so obvious.

mouse select to enlarge:


The first mistake some may make, more likely dropping into the Fall Creek basin, is by going directly from the 11000+ saddle climbing up traversing 150 feet or so to the 11120+ saddle and then dropping straight down where it is much steeper for about 150 feet. Those going up like we did are more likely to notice the lower gradient slabs north of the saddle at 11160+ which is what Winnett advised.

Going north once up to 11160+ it is in fact easier to get down to the 11000+ saddle. Once at the saddle and looking down on how to drop over the edge, instead of a direct descent somewhat northwest down what on the map appears to be a shallow snow chute, better to drop traversing north a bit that moves one out to lower gradients which is also not as north facing so is likely to have less snow.

Then down at the 10520+ pond, instead of directly dropping down along the stream as so many non-topo visual types will likely work, the wiser route goes well west over to lower gradients in order to reach Big Shot Lake.

So use the topo!,-118.81886&z=15&t=T
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Re: Devil's Punchbowl to Schoolmarm Lake via Devil's Saddle

Postby DoyleWDonehoo » Sat Mar 02, 2013 3:20 pm

SSSDave, the map is pretty close to the route I used, the main difference is that I turned big and Little Shot Lakes on the north & east shore, meeting a use trail at the north shore of of the higher lake. There are cliffs on Big Shots west shore.
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