Distance: 77 miles (123.9 km)
Time: 2.5 days (9/15/11 – 9/17/11)
Daily Average: 30.8 miles (49.6 km)
Total Distance: 205 miles (329.8 km)
- Minaret, Cecile and Iceberg lakes.
- Cascade Lake and the views on the subsequent climb up to Sky Pilot Col.
- Sublime early morning vistas of Virginia peak.
- The initial descent into Horse Creek Canyon.
- The RV park at Twin Lakes.
Notes & Musings:
- I hiked the second stage of the SHR by myself. Rachel had a set date for her flight from San Francisco, so we parted ways at Red Meadows. After hiking solo the entire time on the PNT and GDT (the first two hikes of the 12 Long Walks), it was great to have company for a week or so.
- John Muir Trail Vs Sierra High Route: Both are stunning hikes which are similar in length and travel in a North/South direction through the High Sierra. That being said, despite their close proximity the two walks remain quite distinct in character. The JMT is a well maintained trail from start to finish, spends considerable time traversing valley floors and along with the Appalachian Trail, is perhaps the most popular long distance hike in the United States. In contrast, the SHR is a route rather than a trail, stays almost entirely between 9,000 and 12,000 ft., receives little in the way of hiker traffic and remains relatively unknown outside of the U.S. long distance hiking community.
- The Sierra High Route is my favourite long distance hike in the lower 48. Jaw-dropping vistas from start to finish. If your navigation and scrambling skills are good, I cannot recommend this hike highly enough.
“………….after ten years of wandering and wondering in the heart of it, rejoicing in its glorious floods of light, the white beams of the morning streaming through the passes, the noonday radiance on the crystal rocks, the flush of the alpenglow, and the irised spray of countless waterfalls, it still seems above all others the Range of Light.”
– John Muir, The Yosemite (1912)