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Lonely Lake to Big Bird Lake

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Lonely Lake to Big Bird Lake

Postby snowpatch » Fri Mar 08, 2013 4:52 pm

This is actually two questions.

First of all, I'm wondering if it is worthwhile when crossing Elizabeth pass heading north to Deadman Canyon, if it is worth a side blip into the eastern section of Tablelands, just to experience a bit of that area. Or is the descent into Deadman's canyon from Elizabeth pass something not to be missed?

If we do head into eastern Tablelands (of course depending on weather and energy level at the time), we were just gong to venture over Horn Col to Lonely Lake then north to Big Bird Lake. Likely camp at Big bird and descend the next morning to Ranger Meadow and head north from there. For this section, I would like to know if there is a more direct route between Lonely Lake and Big Bird than crossing Pterodactyl pass, then Tableland pass. It looks pretty cliffy on the north side of Big Bird, but just wondering if anyone knows a route through there. OK with class 2, or short sections class 3 if not loose.

I think I have most of our hike figured out, thanks to reading so many great trip reports on High Sierra topic, but this is one piece of information I can't find.



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Re: Lonely Lake to Big Bird Lake

Postby oldranger » Fri Mar 08, 2013 6:04 pm

Snow Patch

I'm confused by your route selection. If coming from Tablelands why would you be going over Horn Col to get to Lonely Lake? The easiest way from Lonely Lake to Big Bird is over Horn Col and down Deadman. It is only 600 ft vertical of easy slabs or tough old horse trail up to Big Bird.

The Best part of heading down from Elizabeth Pass is the huge flower garden as the trail drops to the east of the waterfall halfway between Elizabeth Pass and the campsite at the lower end of Upper Ranger.

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Re: Lonely Lake to Big Bird Lake

Postby snowpatch » Fri Mar 08, 2013 7:00 pm

Mike, No we aren't coming from Tablelands, we will be hiking north from Lone Pine Creek up to cross Elizabeth Pass. This is about day 7 out of Mineral King. I think you may have answered my first question. Would we miss this section of trail you mention as a highlight if we enter Deadman's
Canyon via Big Bird Lake access route? We are looking for the most scenic route between the two options.
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Re: Lonely Lake to Big Bird Lake

Postby maverick » Fri Mar 08, 2013 7:27 pm

You can use Tableland Pass to get down to Big Bird Lake area from were you can
follow the outlet creek which will put you near the flower if present this year.
This is any easy class 2 descent over some large slabs, from Tableland Meadow.
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Re: Lonely Lake to Big Bird Lake

Postby RoguePhotonic » Fri Mar 08, 2013 8:14 pm

Although I have not been to Big Bird Lake I think the views dropping into Deadman are great. Much better than being on the Eastern Tablelands.
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Re: Lonely Lake to Big Bird Lake

Postby oldranger » Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:52 pm

Anyplace you go in the area is great by my standards. Working your way from Tablelands pass to big Bird is pretty spectacular. The flower garden I was referring to is about mile or so up from where you would come into Lower Ranger from Big Bird. Even if you go from Elizabeth Pass to Horn Col you would miss the flower garden because you would pretty much traverse to the n. and would not drop to the bottom of the canyon and cross to the right where the trail goes thru the garden. However you get to lonely lake the easiest way to Big Bird is over Horn Col and into Deadman Canyon. But heading over Pterodactyl and up to Tablelands has its rewards, too. Hell it is all good!

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Re: Lonely Lake to Big Bird Lake

Postby snowpatch » Sat Mar 09, 2013 8:50 am

Thanks for all the advice. This answers my questions. Both routes sound fun. We will stay flexible and see which route calls to us when we are there. Love off trail rambling, but the flower meadow sound gorgeous.
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