Sunday, August 28, 2011

Mineral King Loop Trip Report & Photos

Monday August 29, 2011: Travel Day. Drove up to Cold Springs Campground out at the end of Mineral King Road. This was my first trip to Mineral King so the drive out was exciting. I was very pleased with Cold Springs Campground. Nice, quiet and very inviting. Good travel day.

Sawtooth Peak On Way Up Mineral King Road

Cold Spring Campground

Tuesday August 30, 2011: Sawtooth Peak. Today was a very very tough slog of a day. This being my first experience in this region of the Sierra, I had no idea what I was in for. I set out for Little Five Lakes via Sawtooth Pass & Peak from the trailhead at 7:00 am. The trail was nice right up till lower Monarch Lake, then it was a sandy slog up to Sawtooth Pass. I was carrying a full pack with five days of rations, so the slog was really tiring to say the least. I made it to the pass and was rewarded with wonderful views east to the Kaweah's and the Whitney/Langley region. I dropped my full pack and traversed the sandy class two slopes to the summit with a bottle of water, my rain jacket, camera and a snack. The views from the summit were outstanding, Mt. Kaweah, Mt. Whitney, Mt. Langley, Needham, Eisen, Black & Red Kaweah were all on full display. I got back to the pass and pushed on. Originally I wanted to camp at Little Five Lakes but I was tired so I eyed the first of the Big Five Lakes to stay the night. The hike down through Lost Canyon was peaceful and before long I arrived at camp, made dinner and hit the sack, a very long and tough day.