Third times the charm for us on the Rae Lakes Loop. After much planning and anticipation, my boyfriend, Mason, and I flew out to LA and spent 10 days in the beautiful Eastern Sierra. The big plan was to spend 4 of those days backpacking the Rae Lakes Loop among other site-seeing activities like camping in Mammoth Lakes, visiting their brewery, hiking in Alabama Hills, fishing in the Owens River, and hiking through Horseshoe Meadows. We had attempted this loop twice before and bailed both times due to sickness, but this time we were prepared with more Diamox and a better hydration system.
The night before our big trip, we packed our packs out of our big suitcases in our motel room in Independence. We weighed our packs, repacked many times, and carefully selected what food to put in our bear ball. Early in the morning, we set out on Onion Valley road to begin a 52 mile hike. Of course, the sky was blue and the sun shining bright. We both felt confident as we climbed up to Kearsarge Pass. We stopped for lunch at 11,709 feet in elevation and met a happy group of PCT thru-hikers making up the Sierra section they had to skip in May or June. They were chatting about how many days in a row they hiked 20 miles. Our itinerary called for 15 miles in a day at the most. I sat there looking out over Kings Canyon (you could see for MILES) daydreaming about when my time ...
It was one of those mornings where you wake up, poke your head out of the tent, and are stunned by the landscape because you set up camp in the dark. Michael and I drove our rental Subaru from Las Vegas to Death Valley National Park. After catching the most spectacular sunset at Mesquite Flat Dunes, we drove towards the trailhead for the backpacking trip- Chris Wicht Camp Trailhead. We stopped on the side of the road before it got too steep- we were going to wait until daylight to take the rental car over the steep, rocky, pot-hole-filled road. We had camped in the desert right below a mountain range that glowed red in the morning sun. We stuffed our gear in our packs and drove to the trailhead to find a few other cars and some interesting ruins from an abandoned mining camp.
It was cloudy, windy, and cold when we started up the 6-mile ascent to the Panamint City ruins in Surprise Canyon Wilderness. The trail was a very unique one. The most beautiful feature was the bright, mossy green waterfall flowing over the white granite rock. The trail was a steady climb of...
Hi I'm Vicky.
I'm currently a weekend-warrior (pharmacy technician) in the lovely midwest city of Cincinnati. I've been an avid hiker and backpacker since 2012. You can most often find me on the Sheltowee Trace Trail in Kentucky and Tennessee, but California has my favorite places to backpack.