8952North Lake / South Lake Loop preparations
- Jun 1, 2010Hey all,
I'm planning on taking 6 days vacation in early September and am thinking of doing the North Lake - South Lake loop instead at a leisurely pace. I've heard great things about this loop and want to do it, but am open to other suggestions from you all that have done this before.
A bit about myself and the trip: I normally average 13 miles a day on the JMT and am looking to do a slower pace this time around with a first-timer who will be joining me on this trip. I heard about this loop originally from the ranger at the Rae Lakes and it has always been on my list of places to go, but I can't find much else information about it online. Was hoping you guys could help out with that! I had the following questions to get me started on preparing this trip:
- Anyone know how long this loop is? I've heard it's anywhere from 45 - 60 miles, are there any variations I should know about or is the path pretty straightforward?
- How long does the trail follow the JMT, and which section of the JMT will it hit?
- Are there any online logs with directions to complete the loop?
- I've heard that this route isn't a complete loop through the Sierras. If not, do you know where the trailhead and trailend are? Is there any easy transport to return back to the trailhead in that case?
- Is there a particular ranger station I need to call for permits?
- Are there any better 45-60 mile treks through the Sierras I should consider? I've already done the top third of the JMT (Red's Meadow -> HI) which was beautiful, but I'd rather not do that part again.
I'm hoping September is a good time to go. I've been in the mountain in July (mosquitoes!) and September (no mosquitoes) and it was a much better experience the second time around. Hopefully the same is true this year!
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