Hiking and camping at Buena Vista Lake is a beautiful way to see the south side of Yosemite… the name says it all. With beautiful 360 degree views from Buena Vista Peak you get to look at the backside of Half Dome, up to Clouds Rest and all the domes and peaks in-between.
The last weekend of May was filled with peak bagging fun. Saturday was Red Top Peak in Mammoth. Sunday we headed to Tuolumne Meadows in Yosemite National Park to tackle another peak: Ragged Peak. At 10,912′, this isn’t the tallest or most technical peak, but it is still my most fun climb to date with some sweet ladies.
I’ve been dreading the writeup of these #HellHikeAndRaft posts. It means it’s really over! And I don’t want it to be over. Without getting too sentimental, this was one of the most fun trips I’ve ever been on with some of the coolest people I’ve ever met. Thanks Tara, Russ, Scott, Val, Trevor, Shannon, Jes, Annie, Wendy, Adam, Jeff, and Becky & Parker at America’s Rafting Company!
Now for the nitty gritty… Monday morning, we woke up bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. Our guide, Marshall, picked us up from the Meadows Valley Motel in New Meadows and carted us off to Windy Saddle in the Seven Devils Wilderness. We met up with Rick, our other guide, and John and the horse team and into the wilderness we went.
We quickly began ascending up the Goat Pass trail until we hit the ridge. We were rewarded with views of the Tower of Babel and Mirror Lake. We paused and snapped some photos. From there, we traversed across and began our descent to our lunch destination. The trail was steep and slippery with a bit of scree skiing at certain points. Sheep Lake was the reward, and we stopped to refuel.
Post-lunch, we hiked around Sheep Lake, marveling at its cool, clear waters until we reached the junction to head up to He Devil or head to camp. Tara, Jes, Annie, Russ, Rick, and I decided to tackle He Devil; the rest decided to mosey off to camp.
Our adventurous group began the ascent up, but quickly realized that there was no real trail. Up and up, we went, but as we reached the ridge to reach the summit, we decided to stop. It was late in the day, clouds were rolling in. All signs pointed to safety rather than summiting, and we began our descent and headed to camp.
Shelf Lake was our home for the night! Coming into camp was like arriving at an oasis! A kitchen was set up, a fire was burning, the lake was pristine and clear. I set up camp and started to drink wine. Little did I know, guacamole, chips, and salsa awaited, and there were fajitas to be had.
I slept very well that night.
Total mileage for the day was 4.39 miles with about 1,657′ of elevation gain. This does not include He Devil.
Stay tuned for the other five days, and don’t forget to check out everyone else’s content!
Hike: Mt. Shasta
Where: Shasta-Trinity National Forest
Trailhead: Clear Creek
Duration: 9 hours
Length: 12~ miles out and back total to summit
Gear: Icebreaker Tech T Lite shirt, Triple Aught Design Artemis Hoodie, REI Sahara Pants, Black Diamond Ultra Distance trekking poles, CamelBak Aventura Pack, and Ahnu Sugarpine Boots
Cost of Parking: Free, but summit permit is $20 per person
Mt. Shasta, Mt. Shasta, Mt. Shasta, you got the best of me this time, but I’ll be back. Just you wait and see. Friday afternoon after work, the boyfriend and I drove up to the Clear Creek trailhead to camp out and hike up Shasta the next morning with a Meetup group. We ended up getting in later than expected after driving around in the middle of the forest squinting at all the little forest road signs. We attempted to sleep in the car to save time instead of setting up tent, but it became insanely hot. Cars and people trickled in noisily and slowly after 11pm.
We started our adventure at 6am. Coming from sea level and hiking with lack of sleep made our progress extremely slow. The first few miles of the hike are fairly moderate with a gradual incline to Clear Creek Meadow. Clear Creek Meadow seemed to be the destination of choice for overnight attempts at the summit; we ran into tons of quiet and empty tents next to a clear, babbling spring. After Clear Creek Meadow, the fun really begins.