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Overnight routes off of Highway 4?

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Overnight routes off of Highway 4?

Postby rrivera » Sat Aug 19, 2006 9:57 am

I am planning to do an overnight trip next weekend off of Highway 4 and wanted to see if anyone had some trip suggestions.



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Postby Strider » Sat Aug 19, 2006 2:16 pm

The trailhead a couple of miles east of Alpine Lake, going North from Hwy 4, starts with stunning views of a butte, and a sweeping escarpment going down the other side. Frog Lake has decent trout, and there are some fun granite bluffs to scramble over.
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Re: Overnight routes off of Highway 4?

Postby giantbrookie » Sat Aug 19, 2006 6:02 pm

rrivera wrote:I am planning to do an overnight trip next weekend off of Highway 4 and wanted to see if anyone had some trip suggestions.

I like the "moonscape" formed by the Miocene volcanic rocks (really craggy logging country) up near Ebbetts Pass, and a hike northward on the PCT from Ebbetts Pass really exploits this area well. For a super easy trip one can go only as far as Upper Kinney, and for a much longer trip one can go all the way to Raymond Lake. For the longer option, an overnighter might be made easier and more interesting by doing a shuttle or having two cars so that you can end the hike in the vicinity of Summit Lake. The very last part of the hike near Summit Lake is a bit boring, but most of this hike is very scenic and the area has a distinct character. I've often wondered about Wheeler Lake as an (another) easy overnighter, but I've never tried it myself. Same would be true of the PCT south of Ebbetts Pass.
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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Postby rightstar76 » Sat Aug 19, 2006 7:35 pm

Try Noble Lake from Ebbetts Pass. It's a spectacular 4 mile walk south along the PCT and the scenery is impressive. Especially this year the wildflowers should be fantastic. I backpacked there overnight a few summers ago and I dayhiked there several times a few summers earlier. There are more flowers there than I've seen anywhere else in the Sierra and the smells are amazing. When you get to Noble Lake, I suggest that instead of camping by the main lake that you walk along the PCT to where it leaves the southeast side of the lake. Cross country to your extreme left (north) to a small tarn. That's where the best campsites are. When I was there, I camped at a nice packer's campsite on the north side of the tarn. Sunsets are really beautiful from this spot. Two things I want to mention: First, the trail is both up and down each way, so you'll have to do the same amount of work in each direction. Noble Lake is around 9000 feet. Another thing is you'll probably see cow droppings. I don't know if cows graze in early summer or if they grazed there along time ago. It didn't bother me because the scenery is so wonderful and I really like the area. There are very few people there and when I went, I got a self-registered wilderness permit in the parking lot. I don't know if that's still the policy of the forest service in that area. You might have to go to the ranger station near Lake Alpine or the one in Markleeville to get it now.
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Postby SSSdave » Sat Aug 19, 2006 8:16 pm

rightstar76 wrote:...Another thing is you'll probably see cow droppings. I don't know if cows graze in early summer or if they grazed there along time ago. It didn't bother me because the scenery is so wonderful and I really like the area. ...


The Ebbetts Pass volcanic areas are special and fragile. Cattle grazing there makes a quite ugly impact in the stream and meadow areas. If one visits these areas after one of those cowbell clanging herds has been through, it is absolutely revolting. I wrote Toiyabe NF about this a few years ago and would encourage others to do so else the cattle ranchers will continue to have their way. ...David
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Postby rrivera » Sun Aug 20, 2006 9:56 am

Thanks for the great suggestions. Raymond Lake was actually one of the lakes that I was thinking of getting too although it does sound like some work coming in from either H88 or H4. Noble Lake sounds very nice too and am looking forward to seeing some wildflowers. I just got out of a 9 day trip from Kings Canyon and there were still lots of wildflowers.
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Postby huts » Thu Aug 24, 2006 7:09 pm

Noble Lake is not quite as "noble" as one would think. It is a beautiful hike, the flowers were outstanding three weeks ago but I was glad that I went on in to Bull Lake (about 7 miles). Another place to consider would be Bull Run Lake. The trailhead is west of Ebbets Pass.
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