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Sierra Weekend

 
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JeffH



Joined: 28 Nov 2010
Posts: 391
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Location: Claremont

PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 8:11 pm    Post subject: Sierra Weekend  Reply with quote

August 30-Sep 1
I have some friends that were in Bishop for a few days, so I thought we could join them. Since my gf had never been hiking up there it was a nice opportunity to show some of the places I like to hang out. I officially took Friday off work, so after a couple hours of email and phone calls we finally hit the road at 9:45. Made a stop at Kramer Junction, where we were pleasantly surprised by the clean bathrooms at Burger King. Then we drove up to Whitney Portal, where a burger, fries and beer were just the right thing for lunch. Also took that opportunity to fill up a couple bottles with that cool and tasty Sierra water.
The Thunderbird Motel was nothing great, but it was the cheapest place I could find... We spent Friday evening at Rusty's Saloon, a legendary Bishop dive bar. The locals were rather entertaining, but a highlight was one woman bought everyone a drink. Free beer is always good for me!
Saturday morning we headed north to the Mosquito Flat trailhead, which is at the end of the road from Tom's Place. It's the highest trailhead in the Sierras, which of course makes it very popular. Combine a small parking lot with a late start and we parked three-quarters of a mile down the road. This is one of the great hikes, Little Lakes Valley is about three miles long and has nine lakes. We hung out there for a while, having a lunch snack at the upper Gem Lake. On the drive out we stopped at Rock Creek Resort and had a beer from Mammoth Brewing.
Sunday the plan was Blue Lake, which is above Lake Sabrina. I was surprised to see Sabrina nearly empty by the dam, with only a small trickle of water flowing out. Of course that kept a lot of people away, and we could park right by the trailhead. This is a hike of a little more than three miles, with about 1500 feet of elevation gain. Some of it is exposed and the sunny skies made things hot on the trail. But the first view of the lake is really cool, as you just see a small outlet pond. Looking further, then you realize the lake extends for another mile up the canyon. Once again, this was a lunch spot, and I managed to wade into the frigid water for a while. Walking down was uneventful, although we talked to a few people that had abandoned Yosemite due to the smoke and were backpacking to some other destinations.
So it was another great weekend in the Sierras, and like always just makes me want to get back there again. So much to see....


A few pics below:



South Fork of Lone Pine Creek tumbling down to Whitney Portal.



Rock Creek, once again the place to fill up on water.



Looking up Little Lakes Valley. Clouds were there but no rain.



Heart Lake, number three on the trail up the valley.



Long Lake. There are a few with this name in the Sierras.



One of the Gem Lakes. Lunchtime view.



Lake Sabrina. The dam is at the far right edge.



Nice View of the Piute Crags along the trail next to Sabrina.



First view of Blue Lake.



More of Blue Lake as it started to get breezy.



Leaving Blue Lake as the clouds started to look darker. Got a little rain in Bishop that night but none on the trail.
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RichardK



Joined: 30 Sep 2007
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Location: Florida East Coast

PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2013 7:22 pm    Post subject: Blue Lake Reply with quote

Thanks for the report.  Blue Lake brings back memories. We hiked it in 2006. Lake Sabrina did not have the ring around the bathtub look back then. Pray for a rainy winter.

Compare Lake Sabrina 2006 and 2013.




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