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Other National Forests in California

Backpacking National Forests outside the Sierras in California.

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High Sierra Backpacking Trip Report: Twin Lakes-Benson Lake Loop, July 14 to July 21, 2018


Trip Report
Bensen Lake Loop

July 14 – 21, 2018

Editor's Note
This trip begins and ends at the Twin Lakes Trailhead in the Toiyabe-administered Northern section of the Hoover Wilderness. It climbs precipitiously to, then over the Sierra Crest, into the heart of the very difficult backpacking terrain of the North Yosemite Backcountry.

Intercepting the routes of the unified PCT-TYT along Rancheria Creek in Kerrick Canyon, our route turns South with them, down through the beauties of Seavy Pass before plunging down into the Bensen Hole, only  to climb back out and over Bensen Pass, on our way back to Twin Lakes by splitting off the PCT-TYT to climb up through Matterhorn Canyon, on our way back to our starting trailhead at Twin Lakes.

Check out the maps, miles, and description of this fine route below...

Time & Distance

Eight Nights

Around 54 miles


All Photos


Trail Guide

Bensen Lake Loop Detailed Map

Barney Lake in the Hoover Wilderness
Alex Wierbinski's picture

2019: Gray Wolves Protection Confirmed in California


Gray Wolves in California

OR-7 Leads the Way
Gray wolf OR7. CDFW photo by Richard Shinn.
Gray wolf OR7. CDFW photo by Richard Shinn.

Judge upholds protection for gray wolves in California,
AP, January 28, 2019.


Protections Upheld
“A California judge on Monday upheld protection for gray wolves under the state’s Endangered Species Act, rejecting a legal challenge from ranchers and farmers who fear the predators will threaten their livestock.”

“...California was right to list the wolves as endangered in 2014.”

“...California Farm Bureau Federation and the California Cattlemen’s Association argued the listing was arbitrary because there are so few wolves in the state.”

“A wolf known as OR-7 made headlines in 2011 when it traveled south from Oregon — making it the first known wolf in California since 1924.”

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Water News, Nestle in San Berdo Nat Forest; Selling Us our Own Water


High Sierra Water News
Nestle in San Berdo Nat Forest

Selling Us our Own Water

Bottled water giant Nestlé tells California regulators it’s entitled to keep piping water,
Desert Sun, February 9, 2018.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

NO HIGHER GROUND Changing Forest Composition favors Limber Pine




Changing Forest Composition

Climate change and the rise of the limber pine,
The Sheet, September 30, 2017, PDF, P.12.



Earlier: Bristlecone Research shows Upslope "Run"



Upslope Migration Hazards

Move or Die?
Tree Mortality



Tree News



All September 2017 Trail News


Alex Wierbinski's picture

History of Tahoe National Forest: 1840-1940

History of Tahoe National Forest: 1840-1940,
A Cultural Resources Overview History

My two favorite parts of this history are the pre gold rush era and the late gold rush era.

Pre-Gold Rush History of the Northern Sierra Nevada Region.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Rabid Bobcat Attacks Hikers Near Tucson

Rabid Bobcat Attacks Hikers Near Tucson

Backpacker Online, Sunday, August 3, 2010

Whoa, this is a damn crazy story!

Read the Article


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