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Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

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Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby Stevendanger75 » Fri May 24, 2013 1:14 pm

Hey All,

I'm planning a 5 day, 4 night backpacking trip from 16JUN - 20JUN for 5 people with skill levels of '4'.

Here is what I was thinking:

Day 1:
Leave from Hidden Falls Trailhead in Mountain Home State Forest
Hike 7.6 miles to Summit lake.
Spend 1st night at Summit Lake.

Day 2:
Hike north through cyclone meadow and eventually make a left on the SF Kaweah River.
Continue past South Fork Meadow to Hockett Lakes.
Spend Night at Hockett Lakes.

Day 3:
Layover/Rest day fishing around Hockett Lakes.
(If fishing is poor here, I will consider spending the layover day back at summit lake)

Day 4:
Either Hike south up Tuphoy Creek then back to Summit lake, or backtrack up the SF Kaweah to summit lake.
Spend night at summit lake.

Day 5:
Return to trailhead.

Here is a topo of the area: http://www.yellowmaps.com/usgs/topomaps ... 6118c6.jpg

As far as questions:

How is fishing at Hockett Lakes?
How is fishing at Summit Lake?
Any word on the snow/river crossing/trail conditions?
Would you recommend backtracking or heading up tuphoy creek for day 4?

Any help/insight would be greatly appreciated!



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Re: Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby maverick » Fri May 24, 2013 3:45 pm

Have not seen/read any updated conditions reports on SEKI NPS site or else where
on that area.
Searched for some TR's that may help a little. One mentions good fishing in Summit
Lake, another that was not added mentioned Hockett not having fish. Hope this help.
http://www.goldentroutwilderness.wordpr ... mmit-lake/
http://www.rrbbs.com/cgi-bin/bbs/thread.pl?13-3389
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Re: Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby Stevendanger75 » Fri May 24, 2013 5:48 pm

Thank you for the response!

I have been using both those pages to try to plan my trip, and yes i'm starting to think twice about heading to Hockett. Maybe head north to Blossom Lakes then backtrack to Summit Lake for night 4?
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Re: Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby maverick » Fri May 24, 2013 5:55 pm

Blossom has 13" brook trout (fly fishing) according to one site.
Here is a good TR to the area: http://www.tarol.com/blossomlakes
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Re: Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby Stevendanger75 » Fri May 24, 2013 5:59 pm

Roger. Definitely going to center the trip around the Blossom Lakes now. I really appreciate the help.
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Re: Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby maverick » Fri May 24, 2013 6:09 pm

Have to post it again, here is a TR to the area geared towards fishing:
http://www.gameandfishmag.com/2010/09/2 ... a_0706_01/
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Re: Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby frisfraser » Sat May 25, 2013 10:55 am

I will tell you one thing...You will see everything. Big trees, small trees, bobcats, brookies, mice, rivers, creeks, lots of flowers. You will have no problems with mosquitoes once above summit lake.

I made a trip up to mountain home last year May 23-26, 2012. It was a low snow year. Conditions: Up to Summit Lake is snow free. After, the only problem was, what I call "snow slugs", left-over snow melt going down from summit lake. Makes for a lot of ups and downs. Down to Hockett Mdws was okay, lots of water and melt in May/June. Creeks were swelled. Blossom Lakes were essentially snow free, light patches here and there. Bugs: no bugs. Fishing: The lows were still in the 20's, highs were in the 50's MAX. I got a few bites at summit and blossoms and in Hockett creeks, no catches. I think it was a little early for good fishing. On the way back I caught a few brookies in the tule.

It should be perfect in the middle of this June. Happy Hiking!

-Fris
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Re: Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby Ken M » Sat May 25, 2013 6:01 pm

A few notes:

Tarol, who's TR was posted, was a ranger on the Sequoia NF at the time of her trip. Great lady, now out on the San Bernardino NF. She posts some of the finest wildflower photos I've ever seen.

My trail working group has been working the trail up to Summit Lake for the last three years. Massive amount of work done, and trip scheduled again for this year.

There are three water crossings, getting to Summit Lake. I'd expect in this dry year, that you'd be able to cross them dry.

Summit usually has good fishing.
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Re: Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby Stevendanger75 » Sat May 25, 2013 10:17 pm

I really appreciate all the help/information guys.

New plan is to head straight from Summit lake to Blossom Lakes, and maybe take a layover day exploring the lake complex.

I would love to fish for some brook trout in the south fork of the Kaweah, so I think when heading south back to summit lake, ill branch west and head to south fork meadows as a detour.
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Re: Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby lambertiana » Sun May 26, 2013 8:07 pm

It's been twelve years, but I was with some scouts camping at South Fork Meadow, and the fishing in the S Fork Kaweah was hot. They aren't very big, but there are plenty of small pan-sized fish there. Mostly brookies, we also caught some rainbows and were surprised by a couple browns, too.

We also went up to Blossom Lakes, and the fishing there was great. Bigger fish than S Fork Kaweah. I only saw brookies come out of there.
Last edited by lambertiana on Mon Jun 03, 2013 8:45 pm, edited 6 times in total.
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Re: Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby Snowtrout » Tue May 28, 2013 4:17 pm

Love Summit Lake but hate the +1800' death march up that hill. It's worth it though since the lake has a nice population of 12-13" brook trout in it. They seem to be very spooky during the day and tend to sit in the deeper part of the lake (middle) and venture out in the morning and evening. Best spot to fish is off the west or south shore. The north and east sides are fairly shallow and unless you plan on wading out, might not be able to get out to where the fish are. Spinners and Kastmasters have worked well for me.

I always wanted to go to Hockett or Blossom lakes up there but never made it passed Summit.
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Re: Summit Lake - Hockett Meadows 5 day Advice

Postby hurricaniac » Wed May 29, 2013 9:02 am

If you want a nice long mostly downhill trip, start at Mineral King, then take the Calif. Hiking and Riding trail to Hockett, then proceed down thru the Garfield Grove of sequoias to the South Fork NPS campground.

It's a tedious shuttle, but a cruise of a hike. There is excellent fishing in Horse Creek on the first day in. The ranger station at Hockett is a classic. And the Garfield Grove is the most glorious (and extensive) backcountry grove of big trees I've ever hiked thru.
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