Re: [John Muir Trail] Exit question
- The GSI plastic trowel is much better than the U Dig It. The problem with the U Dig It besides weight is the fact that it has smooth edges, which makes it very difficult to break hard packed soil. The GSI has serrated edges and will cut through hard packed soil much more easily.
> Thanks, I'm going to REI today and will check it out. My U Dig It trowel is six ounces with the carrying case, but quite sturdy.
- There are several campgrounds to choose from. It would help to know if you are coming from the West (SF/OAK/SJC/SMF) or the East (RNO/LAS/MMH).The TM campground tends to be very busy, especially on weekends. So you may need/want to try an alternative. On the west side, White Wolf (~7900 feet, 25 mi to TM) and Porcupine Creek (~8100 feet, 13mi to TM) are easier to get into, especially Porcupine Creek. Porcupine does not have running water, just pit toilets, so you'll want to bring/buy a larger water container you can fill up at White Wolf or TM. I'm not a fan of Yosemite Creek campground which is lower (~7200 feet) and has a ~5 mi dusty dirt access road. Any of the upper campgrounds are near a number of excellent day hikes.If you enter from the west via highway 120, there is a permit office at the Big Oak Flat entrance station. If you enter at or after 11 a.m., you can stop there and try for a next day permit. Then you can stay 1 night at one of the backpacker camps (either TM or White Wolf) and have ~20 hours at altitude before heading out. If you hike out of Lyell, there are campsites ~9 mi in before you do much climbing at around 9,000 feet. That way you can get a second night at elevation before hard hiking over Donohue pass. So you can ease in with only 1 day extra and may not need 2.