2020 © Andrew Skurka. We can help. I’m surprised that you had this experience at Road’s End, which is a very popular trailhead and where I’d expect rangers to know the rules. If you do not reserve your permit beforehand, approximately one-quarter of the permits are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Two aussies (myself and my partner SImon), have just found out about this amazing trail, and are now avidly researching it, to make it happen in the next year or so. I make up the difference by wearing most of my clothing to bed. If you start at Road’s End, you will need a permit from Sequoia-Kings Canyon NP; they detail the permit system on their website . Hikers in October will experience the driest conditions, the coldest temperatures, and the fewest bugs. If you cross into other NPS or USFS lands, those agencies should recognize your permit. The SoSHR is a route in keeping with the spirit of the original SHR, and a route we believe would be close to John Muir’s heart. Buzz and I decided to go in early-July. If you will be entering Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks but starting your trip outside of the parks you can generally obtain your permit for your entire itinerary from the agency where your trip begins (e.g. The Sierra High Route Couple’s Backpacking trip that we started involved us parking a car at the trailhead for Twin Lakes. Sierra County New Mexico – forms and applications related to Sierra County Administration and Government. Explore Inyo National Forest - Wilderness Permits in Inyo National Forest, California with Recreation.gov. Of course, being as we were off trail most of the time, we didn’t see any Rangers on our thru-hike and I doubt they would have cared as long as we had a permit… I wonder if there is an explanation for this, or was the Ranger just misinformed? The High Sierra Peaks, Passes, Trails. Is Skurka's map and data set the most updated option. Sierra High Route and permits via #hiking— Hiking Gurus (@hikinggurus1) May 14, 2018 from Twitter May 14, 2018 at 04:47AM via hikinggurus.com Sierra High Route hikers spend more time on rock than they do on dirt. The original guide is Starr's Guide to the John Muir Trail and the High Sierra Region, written by Walter Starr Jr. in 1933 and published by the Sierra Club.It is still available in revised form. She’d never heard of it and I had only heard vague mention so I tromped off to the library to check out Steve Roper’s work of genius, Sierra High Route: Traversing Timberline Country. Site by, Due to Covid-19 lockdown in California, SMC programs are suspended until after Christmas. 36 miles. Like everyone else, I am sincerely grateful for this valuable information. I’m thinking of using a 20F bag and lightening my load, still being well below 29F. Acute and overuse injuries are more likely with a heavy pack, which frankly makes them downright dangerous. Traveling light on the SHR is even more important than on a standard backpacking trip. The High Sierra Trail is a moderate to strenuous 61.5-mile trail through Sequoia National Park. As background, I hiked the JMT a couple years ago and take long off-trail […] After running up the bottom of the Kern Canyon, it turns east, climbing parallel to Wallace Creek up to the junction with the John Muir Trail, 49 miles (79 km) from the starting point. I'm thinking about hiking the Sierra High Route this summer. Identification of flora and fauna of the Sierra. Thanks so much for taking the time to write up such great information. It descends into Big Arroyo, then climbs up to the Chagoopa Plateau, and drops down again into the Kern River Canyon. We highly recommend that you spend at least one night at moderate altitude (higher than 8,000 feet) just prior to the trip. 6 days, 5 nights. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.) All gear is current state of the art, well tuned and rental fees are deductible if you buy a set up from them. A link does not constitute an endorsement of content, viewpoint, policies, products or services of that web site. Therefore, my recommendation is to carry a canister—not to protect your food from bears, or to protect bears from you, but to protect yourself from rangers. The purpose of Creek Fire Order No. Bland. He eventually relented, wrote “Sierra High Route” on the side of our permit and we were on our way. No matter which start variation you choose, this is one of the finest ski tours in the world and one to be long remembered. Kearsarge start $1875 Here are a few reasons why… (1) The SHR features many steep passes, many big climbs, many Class 3 scrambles, many miles of boulder fields, and constant exposure to thunderstorms. The permit, itself, doesn't cost anything. © Copyright 1998-2020 Sierra Mountain Center. Bear-resistant canisters are mandatory in most places throughout the High Sierra, including many places through which the SHR passes. So, I'm looking to shave a few days off the route. All Rights Reserved. If you are not travelling early or late, then you can chose to either way. Heavy pack + lots of food = slow, hard, and uncomfortable. 58 miles of the BSL is concurrent with the JMT and its associated crowds. SMC operates under permits from Inyo National Forest, Yosemite National Park, Toiyabe National Forest, Joshua Tree National Park, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, and other agencies as required. 10. Identification of flora and fauna of the Sierra. For backpackers raised in the classic style—i.e., those who follow the motto “Be prepared” to the nth degree, or those who are still sporting their vintage 1970’s Kelty external frame pack, giant bedroll, and stainless steel Sierra cup—this goal may seem out of reach, but I assure you that (1) it’s not and (2) it’ll greatly improve your experience on the SHR. I'm planning to hike the Sierra High Route northbound in the late summer, but weddings have now bookended the window and I don't have the time I thought I'd have. Is Skurka's map and data set the most updated option. While this was the only time our schedules were compatible, we also thought it would be a good time to do it. I can’t speak to access points other than the two termini because I’m not from the area and because we stayed on the trail the entire time. ... Forms, Applications, and Permits in pdf format. A follow-up question. Permits & Regulations – A wilderness permit is required for all overnight travel in the Sierras. The most appropriate gear for your SHR outing depends on the season, your personal experience and skills, and your preferences. Do you think I will regret it, provided the temperatures remain the same? I'm planning to hike the Sierra High Route northbound in the late summer, but weddings have now bookended the window and I don't have the time I thought I'd have. And the weather was consistently cloudless, so the sun’s radiant heat fried us to our gizzards. Published by The Mountaineers. You get your permit for the trail head you start at, tell the ranger your itinerary, and that's all? If there are enough people to warrant this you will drive to and meet the plane the evening before the trip starts. The High Sierra, Peaks, Passes, and Trails. Red’s receives a lot of resupply boxes from John Muir Trail hikers and they have a good system in place; the fee is $25/box. The ranger wanted to know our precise itinerary but settled for “nights 2-17: unknown.” For the experienced backcountry skier with good backcountry skills it will be a truly outstanding venture; the essence of ski mountaineering. ‘…the sun was at our back, making for better photos…’. All Rights Reserved. In the High Sierra, you should only need a permit from the agency where your trip starts. The next day we cross Shepherd Pass before descending Tyndall Creek to the Kern River and camp alongside Milestone Creek. Archived. A lightweight pack will reduce the stress & strain on your body and improve your mobility, thus reducing your risk of injury and your long-term wear on important body parts like your knees. I’ve been hiking in the high Sierra backcountry for over 15 years and am just buzzing to start the route this summer. so I will not comment. I'm planning to spend the month of July in the Sierra, most likely doing a variation of the SHR, starting at Road's End and ending in Yosemite Valley because I have family on the west side of the range. The High Sierra is managed by several agencies, but you only need a permit from the agency that manages the trailhead from which you are starting. USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer." Generally, I prefer to resupply by sending packages to myself via the mail, as opposed to trying to gather supplies in town. They are heavy (1 lb, 15 oz for the lightest model, the Bearikade Expedition from Wild-Ideas), they are an added expense, and they are uncomfortable to carry (their cylindrical shape fits awkwardly in small packs, and their hard sides inflict bruises if not cushioned correctly). (Photo by Gilberto Gil.). Wilderness permits are required in Yosemite for all backcountry overnights. You will be travelling up to seven miles a day and gaining up to 3000 feet a day so an excellent level of aerobic fitness is required. Whitney.From the grandeur of Hamilton Lakes Basin and Precipice Lake, to the awe inspiring Big Arroyo and Kern River Valley, the High Sierra Trail is some of the best that Sequoia National Park has to offer. and proceeded to regularly outsmart the humans who tried to protect their food by hanging it, burying it, and even sleeping next to it. There are black bears in the High Sierra, lots of them. But it is an expert route–not for novices, youth groups, bad knees, or even experienced trail hikers new to … Moreover, I would argue that canisters are not necessary if you practice good bear country techniques: do NOT camp where you cook, do NOT carry overly smelly foods or items, and do NOT camp in established sites or near popular trails; DO stealth camp, DO carry your food in odor-proof bags, and DO burn your trash every few days in order to minimize odors. And we thought we would see some stormy weather, which we preferred to California’s cloudless summer weather pattern. Visit their website for more information. My writings on backpacking gear, supplies, and skills, and sometimes about running, hunting, and life events. I’m planning on thru hiking the shr this summer. High Sierra National Forests, Parks, and Wilderness Areas General Information. Laws, John Muir, The Laws Field Guide to the Sierra Nevada. Particularly the info about resupplies, and permits. We had to pay to park our car for a few days and was 14 dollars. the Inyo, Sierra, or Sequoia national forests, or Yosemite National Park). You’ll see that everything becomes vibrant from all the shadows, even little shadows in front of far away rocks; and from backlit greenery too. First skied in its entirety in 1975 by Sierra veteran Dave Beck, this subtle line linking high passes and long contours around huge snow filled bowls has become the goal of many a backcountry skier. If so, the Sierra High Route is for you. I’ve got a 0F mummy bag, and trying to shave off some pounds. This is an excellent general reference to trails, cross-country routes and climbing routes in the Sierra Nevada. Visit this page to check availability. Of course, if it is a particularly heavy or light winter, the conventional hiking season may be longer or earlier. Best description of our route. Often compared to the famous “Haute Route” of the European Alps or Colorado’s Tenth Mountain Trail, this is a true extended wilderness ski tour, with no huts, few other people and no nearby roads. This is “it”; the ultimate Sierra Classic ski tour. USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer." After parking the car, we carpooled to the start at … by raising legal technicalities against warrantless searches or questioning law enforcement jurisdictions, etc. Gear Rentals Many thanks, Steve. Recommendations on how to access the trail are included in several guide books, especially Sierra High Route by Steve Roper. First skied in its entirety in 1975 by Sierra veteran Dave Beck, this subtle line linking high passes and long contours around huge snow filled bowls has become the goal of many a backcountry skier. level 1. I'm thinking about hiking the Sierra High Route this summer. Prior winter camping and mountaineering skills are required. "In accordance with Federal law and U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability. The Mountaineers, Mountaineering: The Freedom of the Hills. What would you carry for this year, for Mid-June to Mid-July? Travelling up Vidette Creek we crossing Deerhorn Saddle and Erickson Col before rejoining the regular route at Milestone Creek. Youtube Video Library See the overview of using our self-service portal for permits, or check out our detailed user guide. Roper, Steve, Sierra High Route: Traversing Timberline Country. The Sierra High Route. 7 days, 6 nights. The encyclopedia of Sierra travel. Hope to see you all out there this summer. But in general, I strongly recommend that you travel light: you should aim for the weight of your pack, minus consumables like food and water, to about 15 lbs or less. where to pick up your permit, their reservation policy, etc. A circumnavigation of the remote upper headwaters of the Tuolumne…, The Ultimate Hiker's Gear Guide (Second Edition): Tools & Techniques to Hit the Trail, Free download: My 12 go-to breakfasts & dinners. Stay safe. I assume SOBO is the better direction, but a permit from Yosemite would be harder to get right? Starting in the low desert of the Eastern Sierra and crossing some of the more rugged parts of the Sierra Nevada this is not a tour for the beginning skier. Permits A Wilderness Permit is compulsory and quotas apply for all access points. Assessor’s Office: 65+ or Disabled Person Low Income Limitation Application 65+ or Disabled Person Low … The view from this pass is one of the finest on the entire High Route. Try this high up in the mountains sometime, mid-day on a clear day: look North for a while. Posted by 2 years ago. To file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, Room 326-W, Whitten Building, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410 or call (202) 720-5964 (voice and TDD). The route is the brainchild of long time Sierra climber and wanderer, Steve Roper, who pieced the route … This system is more time-efficient and it ensures that I have everything I need/want. The original guide is Starr's Guide to the John Muir Trail and the High Sierra Region, written by Walter Starr Jr. in 1933 and published by the Sierra Club.It is still available in revised form. Read an account of skiing the High Route with SMC by Ray Purcell. I recommend this system especially for the SHR because there is only one convenient opportunity to buy supplies en route—at Tuolumne Meadows, where there is a small grocery store about two miles down Tioga Road. We do not include accommodation in the pricing but can make local suggestions for you. (That, and because frankly they have the potential to easily kill you). The name “Sierra High Route” is actually a pretty generic name. My son and I quickly changed our plans, and will be starting the SHR on my 66th birthday in June of 2015. Price includes guiding, van shuttle, air charter, permits, all necessary group gear, avalanche beacons, tents, kitchen gear and dinners, lunches and breakfasts (you bring snack items). Buzz and I both carried canisters. Spending a night or two in Mammoth or camped at the trailhead campground would do the trick. So, I'm looking to shave a few days off the route. You need SMC Advanced Ski Skills or better for this tour. The mosquitoes hatched earlier than usual. Best description of our route. Starting March 1, you can make reservations in the Inyo National Forest to get a permit (up to six months in advance) and the reservation is about $8 per person. The High Sierra is managed by several agencies, but you only need a permit from the agency that manages the trailhead from which you are starting. And for many years there was an unhealthy situation whereby these bears recognized that humans = food (and good food at that—Snickers, peanut butter, salami, etc.) From this point, follow Steve Roper’s excellent instructions for the Sierra High Route. Getting There: Because the Sierra High Route stretches about 195 miles between Kings Canyon and Yosemite National parks, and takes in long stretches of national forest lands, it can be assessed from both parks and from highways off California’s Highway 395. Please check your email for further instructions. If rangers were not out patrolling, I would not take a canister and I would instead rely on the effective techniques I have described above. Subscribe to receive a free download of my recipe book, which features 12 extensively trail-tested breakfasts and dinners. I completed the AT years ago and the JMT last summer, but this trip excites me more than the other two combined. Rangers do patrol the backcountry, though in lower frequency than they used to (thank you Bush administration), and they regularly do canister checks on passing hikers. Nicknamed Peter, the author vanished during a trip to the Minarets in 1933, his body was found after an intense search, and his book was published posthumously. Got my permits and getting ready. Bears are most problematic in high-traffic areas, which the SHR purposely and mostly successfully avoids. If you start at Road’s End, you will need a permit from Sequoia-Kings Canyon NP; they detail the permit system on their website. High Sierra Trail Summary. I'm in. Box 559 Prather, CA 93651 559-855-5355 (TDD) 559-855-5367 ... Campfire permits are free With respect, Andrew, the most beautiful photos (and the most beautiful views) are while facing into the sun, because shadows highlight everything, even at mid-day. 13,000 feet of ascent; 12,200 of descent. Roper, Steve, Sierra High Route: Traversing Timberline Country. Need to rent equipment for your trip? Laws, John Muir, The Laws Field Guide to the Sierra Nevada. Published by The Mountaineers. If you will be accessing the park through the Jennie Lakes wilderness (Sequoia National Forest), obtain a permit … I am planning to do the southern section of the SHR. High route guides, a free food e-book, and signed copies of The Ultimate Hiker’s Gear Guide. The Sierra High Route is one of the most spectacular and challenging treks in North America. Your direction is non-critical unless you are hiking early or late in the season. (. On Day 3 the Sierra High Route leaves the idyllic camp and ascends 600ft to Nancy Pass (10,200’), the conspicuous gap west of Peak 10,531. Also, by reducing your base weight you can hike more miles per day and cover the distances between resupply points quicker, which will reduce the amount of food weight you must carry. From here we are picked up by our shuttle van and head to Visalia and return back to the east side by either van or plane flight depending upon availability. I am not as familiar with that system—e.g. The Sierra National Forest announces the extension of the Sierra – Creek Fire Closure Order through January 06, 2021. This is “it”; the ultimate Sierra Classic ski tour. Buzz and I went north, mostly for logistical reasons: it was easier to extract ourselves post-hike from Mono Village than it was from Road’s End. The winter of 2007-08 began strong, but its strength faded and Spring arrived early. Suggestions on preparation - get the most out of your trip! We’ll then descend into the lush meadowlands below … 12,800 feet of ascent; 14,700 of descent, Shepherd start From Bridgeport we took the CREST bus directly to the Reno (RNO) airport; it cost $17 one-way, which is a great deal. SMC does not rent ski equipment, but we work with Mammoth Mountaineering (760-934-4191) to get you set up on the correct equipment. Since I wash my clothes every 1-2 days, I 'm looking to shave a few major trails it! The potential to easily kill you ) into other NPS or USFS lands, those should. The potential to easily kill you ) cross into other NPS or USFS lands, those agencies should your! Stays in the backcountry of the JMT and its associated crowds questioning enforcement. As much as possible since there is a long tour and pack needs. Scree, which the SHR Passes and in fact, it is a distance! Permits, alternate start/end points at, tell the ranger your itinerary and... The side of our permit and we thought we would finish before mosquitoes. 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