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Backpacking in the Carson-Iceberg Wilderness
Highlands Reports on the Unmaintained and Untrailed Segment of the Tahoe to Yosemite Trail through the Upper Clarks Fork of the Stanislaus River
Last year we hiked from 108 over St Mary's Pass to Iceberg Meadow.
We did it in mid-June. There was a good amount of snow at the pass but we manage our way over and around it.
We've been recieving increasing reports of trail deterioration along the Tahoe to Yosemite Trail once we cross the North Stanislause River Northbound climbing the ridge separting the river from Rock Lake.
We get this fine report from Highlands on his 2015 passage:
We started at Lake Alpine and stayed at Rock Lake the 1st night. The next day we proceeded to Highland Creek near the bottom of Jenkins Canyon.
Moved to Mountain Safety Forum
Close Encounter of the Cow Kind
As I was hiking down the Clarks Fork of the Stanislaus on the unmaintained Tahoe to Yosemite Trail I picked up the enchanting sound of softly clanging cow bells bouncing off the rocky canyon walls until absorbed by the forest.
From the North Edge of Clarks Fork Meadow along the Tahoe to Yosemite Trail.
I need to go backpacking post-haste. City life sucks and has about driven me crazy. I will be ready to run screaming into Nature after the Fourth.
How about you?
I have a five to seven day trip planned out of the Saint Marys Pass Trailhead near the top of Highway 108. I need a ride up there between the 5th and 7th, if anyone is driving that way.
But here's the real deal, why I am posting here; I am hiking North on an untrailed segment of the TYT to an unmaintained segment of trail, then down to maintained trail.
George and Sue have a nice campsite at the end of a cross country route located on the North shore of Spicer Meadow Reservoir out of Summit Lake.
Medium and Long distance
Carson Iceberg Wilderness
This report on backpacking loops and trips around the Carson Iceberg Wilderness comes from the Tahoe to Yosemite section of the Tahoe to Whitney trail guide at the Jenkins Canyon trail junction alongside Highland Creek above Spicer Meadow Reservoir.
Interesting formation of rock inclusions in exposed granite along unmaintained segment of Tahoe to Yosemite Trail along Clarks Fork of the Stanislaus River
Interesting inclusions exposed on granite outcropping.
South of Northern Boulder Lake trail juction, North of the Southern unmarked junction to Boulder Lake.
Trail Guide Page
Boulder Lake junction to East Carson River
I've seen bears and bear sign here as long as I've been coming here.
Bear behavior has been on a long term trend of increasing familarity with humans, and increasing numbers for the past couple of decades.
Then Vic Bergstrom sold the Little Antelope Pack Station to Joe. Joe's opened up the bear hunting in the Eastern Sierra around the East Carson River. This has changed the trajectory of bear behavior as well as their distribution.
This is a general post about bear encounters on the trails and in the terrain around the upper reaches of the East Carson River.
I guess this topic deals with cold effects on terrain, on water, on lakes and streams.
Here's Wolf Creek flowing as slush during October of 2011:
I was facinated by this. I would have spent the morning watching it revert to liquid water, but I had a hiking partner with time constraints during this backpacking trip that I could not blow off.
In for a penny, in for a pound.
These up to date conditions reports were sent to me by Eric, who was kind enough to share them with us during late July of 2013:
Eric's Account of Recent Trail Conditions, 2011-2013
This was my third summer hiking the original Tahoe-to-Yosemite trail, all parts as originally proposed in Tomas Winnett's guide book.
Bull Run Lake and Bull Run Peak with George and Sue, Carson Iceberg Wilderness, Stanislaus National Forest
George and Sue backpacked up to Bull Run Lake from Pacific Grade Summit on Highway 4 West of Ebbetts Pass, and scrambled around the nearby peaks, including Bull Run Peak.
Pacific Grade Summit is a wonderful flat with a beautiful lake, Mosquito Lake, with some cabins, a campground and nearby trailheads, of which Sue and George hiked the trail on across Highway 4 from the South side of Mosquito Lake South to Bull Run Lake.
Road Map: Highway 4
Highland Lakes to Summit Lake via Highland Creek
Backpacking the Carson Iceberg Wilderness with George and Sue. Highway 4 trailheads at Summit Lake near Union Reservoir, and Highland Lakes to the West of Ebbetts Pass and East of Lake Alpine.
Trip: Hike Highland Lakes Trailhead down to Summit Lake off the Northeast end of Union Reservoir.
Dirt roads lead from Highway 4 to both lakes,
Tree Frog, Noble Lake
Trail Guide Page: Ebbetts Pass to Tyron Peak, Noble Lake
Finding my way North down from the top of the Clarks Fork Headwaters Bowl to the beginning of the Clarks Fork of the Stanislaus River brought me through some rough terrain.
After finding my way down through a channel between the steep cliffs protecting the headwaters I approached the burbling creek that begins the Clarks Fork's voyage down-mountain when this beautiful butterfly flew by.
The Boulder Lake Trail junction to Saint Marys Pass is our last section of the Tahoe to Yosemite Trail across the Carson Iceberg Wilderness.
At Saint Marys Pass the Tahoe to Yosemite backpacker is faced with 9 miles of tight and twisting Highway 108 down to Kennedy Meadows, where both our resupply package and the Southbound Tahoe to Yosemite Trail awaits.
Post up your comments about this last section of the TYT across the Carson Iceberg through the comments link below.