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Knapsack Pass

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Knapsack Pass

Postby copeg » Thu May 24, 2012 5:19 pm

Knapsack Pass

GENERAL OVERVIEW: Knapsack pass is located in Kings Canyon National Park and connects Dusy Basin with untrailed Palisade Basin.


LOCATION: Kings Canyon National Park. Knapsack Pass on the HST Map

ELEVATION: 11,680ft

USGS TOPO MAP (7.5'): North Palisade, CA

ROUTE DESCRIPTION: From the lower lakes in Dusy Basin, head southeast up granite slabs and shelves towards the saddle south of Columbine Peak. The south-east side of the pass consist of steep slopes mixed with some talus, granite shelves, and cliffs. A quick traverse North before descending the east side of the pass helps avoid the steep cliffs. This is a popular pass, and a faint use trail may be found along many parts of the route.

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Re: Knapsack Pass

Postby Troutdog 59 » Fri May 25, 2012 9:34 am

Great thread Copeg!!! If I may, I will add a little to the route description. If you are coming from Bishop Pass, one does not actually need to drop all they way down to the lowest chain of lakes. I did this beautiful little pass many moons ago (1979 I think?) and we approached it from what I'll call the middle lake (at ~ 11,300, below lake 11,388). We angled or contoured SE from the lake and had no problem working our way up some shelfs and slabs, plus a little talus here and there until we hit the faint use trail you mentioned. Not a big difference, but does save you a few hundred feet to hike back up.
"Don't accept that what's happening
Is just a case of others' suffering
Or you'll find that you're joining in
The turning away"
D. Gilmour, Pink Floyd
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Re: Knapsack Pass

Postby SweetSierra » Thu Sep 06, 2012 10:49 am

Thanks for the description! I would also add to look for a huge rock (size of a bus--can't miss it and it's the only one around) that looks like a minature half-dome at the base of Knapsack Pass in Dusy Basin. The use trail that ascends the pass is evident just behind this boulder. Also, as you climb toward the pass, you come to a cliff band with the stream intersecting it. When we came to this place on the way up, we climbed up to the left of the stream on the use trail. A better way, which we found on the way down, is to make a left at this cliff (it has a huge flattish sheet of granite in front of it) a short distance and then make a right and ascend long easy granite ramps to the summit. You have to make that left at the cliff band and angle over to see the ramp. We didn't see the ramp when we came up but saw it as we began to descend the pass and decided to see where it led. The route is ducked where it intersects that cliff band area.
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Re: Knapsack Pass

Postby papercup » Wed Jul 09, 2014 1:57 pm

Just here to add a few pictures:


Knapsack Pass from Dusy Basin, taken from the lake underneath Columbine Peak.


Knapsack Pass from Palisade Basin.
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Re: Knapsack Pass

Postby acvdmlac » Sat Jul 09, 2016 3:52 pm

Easy and fun Class 1-2 ascent on West side, no major route-finding problems. East side is even easier Class 1 with a very clear use trail, easier walking than stair-stepping up the Dusy Branch trail from LeConte Canyon. The only challenge is trusting that it is the correct route because it does ascend significantly, some 100’ or so, to the north-west from the low-point of Knapsack, before switching down and traversing to the Barrett Lakes.
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