Trip Advice: Devils Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake

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mbehlen
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Trip Advice: Devils Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake

Post by mbehlen » Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:38 pm

Hi Everyone!

Well, my second annual trip was planned and without a lot of time I booked a permit for Dinky Lakes to explore for the third time. However, with two weeks until my trip I am feeling underwhelmed and want to go somewhere new. Being close to Courtright (two hours) I was looking at my maps and saw Devil's Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake. After googling the pictures it looks beautiful! So now, I wanted your advice. I can be at the trail head at 12:00pm Sunday August 5th and have until Thursday at 4:00pm to get back to the trailhead. With this in mind, I think a loop is very doable to this area. I wanted your thoughts and criticism as I have never been up that way.

Idea 1:
Sunday Day 1: Acclimate and Camp at Courtright (or get a head start and camp somewhere on the trail a couple miles in)
Monday Day 2: Hike to and Camp at Devils Punchbowl - 14.5 Miles
Tuesday Day 3: Day Hike Around to all the Lakes (maybe go up to the pass) and Camp at Disappointment Lake - 6 Miles
Wednesday Day 4: Hike back to Trail head 10.6 Miles

Total Mileage: 31-34 Miles

About me:
Level 2- Some backpacking trips, using trails
What is your main interest?
- Lakes
- Big Mountain scenery
- Photography

Have you hiked at elevation before? Any prior issues with Altitude Sickness?
I start feeling this on day 1 at around 8500 depending on sleep, hydration, etc. And need to take a break of about an hour at 9000. For whatever reason between 9000-10500 I am pretty solid (on two experiences). It's the first part that gets me.


Please let me know your thoughts on this.








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Re: Trip Advice: Devils Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake

Post by rightstar76 » Sat Jul 21, 2018 4:00 am

Hi Michael.

My advice would be to make this an out and back trip (loop is not worth it in my opinion). Instead, make Rae Lake a base camp. Note: this is *not* the Rae Lakes in SEKI national park.

Sunday Day 1: Maxson Trailhead to Hobler Lake
Monday Day 2: Hobler Lake to Fleming Lake (Rae Lake, if you're not beat from the altitude - you probably will be)
Tuesday Day 3: If you camped at Fleming Lake, move camp to Rae Lake. Then day hike to whatever lake(s) you feel like. Maybe Lower and Upper Indian lakes, or Disappointment Lake. Devil's Punchbowl is another possibility.
Wednesday Day 4: Pick another lake for a day hike.
Thursday Day 4: Rae Lake to Maxson Trailhead. If you leave by 10 am, you should be back at the trailhead by 4 pm.

Good luck! :)

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Re: Trip Advice: Devils Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake

Post by AlmostThere » Sat Jul 21, 2018 4:25 am

My suggestion is hiking to Post Corral the first day, to be at the bottom of that long climb up to the lake basin. Combining that long hill with 14.5 miles on the first day sounds like a death march.... Heaviest pack plus steep hill plus long miles.

Bring plenty of stove fuel if you catch fish to eat. No fires up there.

I would say the scenery up there is comparable to Dinkey, but it's a bigger hill to climb. My approach is usually going over Hell for Sure from the Goddard side, or going over the cross country pass from Bench Valley over one of the shoulders of Mount Hutton.

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Re: Trip Advice: Devils Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake

Post by rightstar76 » Sat Jul 21, 2018 4:49 am

AlmostThere, you're right about that. It is too long of a day from Hobler Lake. He should definitely camp the first night near the trail junction at Post Corral Creek. Then he can go up the next day and make his base camp at Rae Lake.

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Re: Trip Advice: Devils Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake

Post by tlsharb » Sat Jul 21, 2018 6:25 am

Well, I will miss you by a couple days..we are doing a RMB to Bench to Blackcap to Woodchuck and out to Wishon starting on the 2nd. A couple things: First, definitely hike on Sunday. Either Hobler or Post Corral make easy first day acclimation hikes, and shave miles off the next day. Second, Disappointment Lk. isn't 10.6 miles from the trailhead...more like 15. If I was doing it:
Day 1: post corral
Day 2: either Disappointment or Dale (easy from either to go check out the southern end of the basin). Dale has some great campsites on the north end of the lake, and you can have a campfire there (only place in the basin I believe)
Day 3: loop around Blackrock up to Arctic to HFS up the pass and back. Gorgeous country.
Day 4: head home. If you want to reposition to Fleming and knock off a couple miles for the last day, that works too.

ts

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Re: Trip Advice: Devils Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake

Post by sekihiker » Sat Jul 21, 2018 7:15 am

This report will give you some suggestions of where to visit in this beautiful area: http://www.sierrahiker.com/RedMountainBasin/index.html

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Re: Trip Advice: Devils Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake

Post by mbehlen » Sat Jul 21, 2018 7:18 am

Thank you everyone for your awesome help! I am sorry I got something wrong in my first post, I have until Wednesday, not Thursday to get back to the trail head! Sorry! However, thank you all again! I have a revised itinerary too (based on TS's suggestions)!

Day 1: Hike and Camp and Post Corrall: 6.1 Miles
Day 2: Hike and Camp at Dale Lake: 6.5 Miles
Day 3: Explore the Basin and Camp at Disappointment Lake: 9 Miles
Day 4: Hike out: 14 Miles

Quick question TLSHarb, can you see the image below and let me know if this is the route you recommended on day 3?

Image
Last edited by mbehlen on Sat Jul 21, 2018 7:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Trip Advice: Devils Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake

Post by mbehlen » Sat Jul 21, 2018 7:20 am

sekihiker wrote:This report will give you some suggestions of where to visit in this beautiful area: http://www.sierrahiker.com/RedMountainBasin/index.html
Thank you! I will read this now with my coffee!

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Re: Trip Advice: Devils Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake

Post by balzaccom » Sat Jul 21, 2018 7:54 am

Full agreement with AT about camping at Post Corral the first night. You can also make a loop via the King's river, then up to Devil's Punchbowl from the South.

Note that the climb from Post Corral to Flemming Lake is tough. So is the climb from Kings River to Devil's Punchbowl. Once you are up in the basin, hiking is a lot easier.

My favorite lake of them all the Lower Indian, above Rae Lake. Nice fishing, too.
Balzaccom

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Re: Trip Advice: Devils Punchbowl and Hell for Sure Lake

Post by rightstar76 » Sat Jul 21, 2018 8:15 am

The trail between Devil's Punchbowl and North Fork Kings River is much more challenging than the one between Post Corral Creek and Red Mountain Basin. That would make for a decent loop if you had 6 days for your trip. However, with only 4 days, I wouldn't recommend it. You want to have as much time to rest, relax and enjoy the area.

Revised itinerary:

Sunday Day 1: Maxson Trailhead to Post Corral Creek
Monday Day 2: Post Corral Creek to either Rae Lake or Disappointment Lake (depending on your energy level when you get to Fleming Lake)
Tuesday Day 3: Dayhike
Wednesday Day 4: Return to Maxson Trailhead.

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