Overview & Maps

This is it, our 20th year and we decided on a trip that connected the past years and at the same time opened up new horizons for the next 20. We started at Leavitt Meadows, the scene of many other beginings and had Bart and company pack us into Dorothy Lake for 10 days along the PCT!! To top it off, two of my cousins from London, Rob and Tom, flew out to enjoy and participate in a outdoor adventure that was not a typical European experience. As with all of our trips, there is always a twist and this was not to be any different. So read on and enjoy...

Dorothy Lake

13.9 Miles

Gain +2693/-426

Steak Kabob

  • Early start at Leavitt Meadows Pack Station and a fast ride to Dorothy arriving @ 1430
  • Temps started to dip and rain turned to light snow, mother Sierra at her finest
  • Our fourth visit, with rain/snow three out of the four stays
  • Hot dinner and then into warm sleeping bags to pass the night in the low 30s

Wilmer (Wilma) Lake

8.9 miles

Gain +13/-1478

Thai Green Curry w/Crab

  • A downhill day thru Jack Main Canyon with the wind howling and cool temps
  • George made his first assault of the trip on Keyes Peak (10670ft) and walked into camp in time for dinner
  • It was a struggle to keep his portion from being consumed by the UK boys
  • Lowest night temperatures of the trip, mostly likely in the 20s

Lower Kerrick Canyon

6.0 miles

Gain +1919/-1906

Pesto Salmon Pasta

  • Two 1k up and and 1k down cycles
  • The most challenging day of the entire trip
  • A bit of grumbling that was fixed by a re-allocation of food allocations
  • A warm night of sleep finally

Benson Lake

7.2 miles

Gain +1360/-1748

Kung Pao Chicken Noodles

  • Another day of up and down, but to our advantage - More down than up
  • Benson Lake sits in a granite bowl of looming peaks with a wonderful sandy beach and plenty of campsites
  • George and his uncanny talent of calling owls treated us to soothing melodies as dusk settled
  • However, he also managed to call in Screech Owls breaking the silence of the night like nails on a chalkboard

Smedberg Lake

4.4 miles

Gain +2077/-419

Mac n Cheese

  • Straight up is the only was to describe it, with each of us practicing different techniques to keep on-going
  • George was able to bag Volunteer Peak (10481ft) along the way and we crested as he was standing on the summit
  • While Benson was in a deep bowl, Smedberg was wide open to surrounding elements
  • There is plenty of good camping and short hike reveals sunset views that go on and on

Miller Lake (2x)

7.9 miles

Gain +2010/-1845

Chicken Cashew Curry & Cheese Enchiladas

  • While planning this trip, this looked to be the most challenging day and we had an alternate stop if needed
  • Not needed, as we made Benson Pass and smoked right thru the Matterhorn Canyon alternate
  • As we lunched at the pass, a rather large deer family roamed by as if we were not even there
  • On our rest day, George bagged Whorl Mountain (12033ft) and the rest of use explored locally

Lower Virginia Canyon

3.9 miles

Gain +377/-1282

Jamaican Checking w/Rise

  • A downhill day after a rest day, does not get any better
  • We found a nice campsite on Return Creek and did some polar bear swimming
  • One of the best campfires of the trip

Glen Aulin

7.7 miles

Gain +643/-1338

Black Bean Chow Mein

  • Starting to realize the trip is coming to an end after 59+ miles
  • The trail was bone dry for most of the way, so once we got close to water it was fill it up!
  • We stayed at Glen Aulin and strolled into camp as the last of the cowboys had broken down the Hi-Sierra camp
  • Way too much noise at the backpacker camp so we headed away and had afire that burned with intensity

Tuolumne Meadows

5.3 miles

Gain +1083/-345

Picnic Lunch & Dinner at the Ahwanee Lodge

  • Last day of hiking and looking forward to meeting the family as we trek into Lembert Ridge picnic are
  • The rest of the gang hurried along while I lazed my way in solitude and snapped some pics as I went along
  • 20 years of plying the backcountry - What a wonderful strange trip we have been rambling on !!!
  • A wonderful greeting as we were serenaded by the gang - Thanks for the great finish

Who knows what the next 20 will reveal ---

May our paths and errands meet...