Sixty Lakes Col?

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pirate

 
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Sixty Lakes Col?

by pirate » Thu Jun 27, 2024 6:05 am

Has anyone gone over Sixty Lakes Col, in Gardiner Basin?

In Gardiner Basin, you are in a nice area, surrounded by very crowded trails such as Bubb's Creek Trail, but the trail in Gardiner is a dead end. So, this could be really nice area AND no one comes in there.

However, you can get out of Gardiner Basin via "Sixty Lakes Col", which is marked on Caltopo. Now the countours look doable to go up and over... pretty much. What I don't actually know is if you can make it cross-country following the creek NE around a lake at 10846'. The contours around the lake are fairly steep. In this case, sometimes you can make it go, and sometimes it's really really nasty and tough. sometimes it's too steep, sometimes is so thick with Willows it's totally miserable.

After the lake I would just continue NE until I hit the trail that heads back tot the middle of Rae Lakes.

So, any advice based on experience would be really helpful!

Thanks,

TPC

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Scott M.

 
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Re: Sixty Lakes Col?

by Scott M. » Thu Jun 27, 2024 1:03 pm

Quite doable with no particular issues.

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Re: Sixty Lakes Col?

by pirate » Fri Jun 28, 2024 6:40 pm

Scott M. wrote:Quite doable with no particular issues.


Dear Scott M.: So you have done this yourself recently? Can you tell me your complete route?

I actually just found a couple posts recently describing the Gardiner basin as hours and hours of bushwacking hell.
https://www.goldenstateofminds.com/blog ... u998zeohw7
and
https://hikingtales.com/sierra-nevada/s ... kes-basin/

Thanks!

-TPC

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Re: Sixty Lakes Col?

by Scott M. » Fri Jun 28, 2024 8:47 pm

Been over ten years since I did it. Lots of drama in those posts you listed. I can't give you a GPS route since I don't use one. I am a relic who still just uses a topo map, compass, altimeter, and experience.
Briefly:
Day One - Left Onion Valley over Kearsarge and the normal trails to Charlotte Lake proceeding with a spotty trail but follow-able to Gardiner Pass. I descended the pass to the drainage below at about 10,500' and followed that drainage eastbound over a small pass/saddle NW of Mt. Gardiner. I contoured down to the large lake in Gardiner Basin at about 11,400'. Camped there.
Day Two - Took a fairly direct route from the lake at 11,400' over what you have called Sixty Lakes Col. It was xc until connecting with the actual trail in Sixty Lakes Basin which connected me to the JMT north of Glen Pass. Then JMT to Kearsarge Pass trail out to Onion Valley.
Hope that helps.

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Re: Sixty Lakes Col?

by pirate » Sat Jun 29, 2024 9:36 am

Scott M. wrote:Been over ten years since I did it. Lots of drama in those posts you listed. I can't give you a GPS route since I don't use one. I am a relic who still just uses a topo map, compass, altimeter, and experience.
Briefly:
Day One - Left Onion Valley over Kearsarge and the normal trails to Charlotte Lake proceeding with a spotty trail but follow-able to Gardiner Pass. I descended the pass to the drainage below at about 10,500' and followed that drainage eastbound over a small pass/saddle NW of Mt. Gardiner. I contoured down to the large lake in Gardiner Basin at about 11,400'. Camped there.
Day Two - Took a fairly direct route from the lake at 11,400' over what you have called Sixty Lakes Col. It was xc until connecting with the actual trail in Sixty Lakes Basin which connected me to the JMT north of Glen Pass. Then JMT to Kearsarge Pass trail out to Onion Valley.
Hope that helps.


Dear Scott M: OK, that is SUPER helpful and REALLY interesting. There is a nominal Gardiner Basin Trail shown on caltopo that goes WAY around, starting by going NW for like 2 miles until it curves around East. It looks like the point where there is some green shading on the map is the "dumpster fire hell" of bushwacking. It looks like your route avoids all that and is rather clever! It looks like you went over Gardiner Pass, then quickly turned East and went over Gardiner Pass East to get to Gardiner Lakes. Then over 60 lakes col, around the lake at 10,840 and back to the trail.

I think this is pretty understandable - again thanks! I think all the misery is for anyone trying to follow the (not maintained) Gardiner Basin Trail, which seems to be under 6 feet of willow in places. A pity, that looks like gorgeous country, but I'm no fan of bushwhacking.

Again thanks,

-TPC
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Re: Sixty Lakes Col?

by pirate » Sat Jun 29, 2024 5:51 pm

pirate wrote:
Scott M. wrote:Been over ten years since I did it. Lots of drama in those posts you listed. I can't give you a GPS route since I don't use one. I am a relic who still just uses a topo map, compass, altimeter, and experience.
Briefly:
Day One - Left Onion Valley over Kearsarge and the normal trails to Charlotte Lake proceeding with a spotty trail but follow-able to Gardiner Pass. I descended the pass to the drainage below at about 10,500' and followed that drainage eastbound over a small pass/saddle NW of Mt. Gardiner. I contoured down to the large lake in Gardiner Basin at about 11,400'. Camped there.
Day Two - Took a fairly direct route from the lake at 11,400' over what you have called Sixty Lakes Col. It was xc until connecting with the actual trail in Sixty Lakes Basin which connected me to the JMT north of Glen Pass. Then JMT to Kearsarge Pass trail out to Onion Valley.
Hope that helps.


Dear Scott M: OK, that is SUPER helpful and REALLY interesting. There is a nominal Gardiner Basin Trail shown on caltopo that goes WAY around, starting by going NW for like 2 miles until it curves around East. It looks like the point where there is some green shading on the map is the "dumpster fire hell" of bushwacking. It looks like your route avoids all that and is rather clever! ...


OK, here is a little map. I marked what I think is your more clever route. I tried to make the "Pirate/TB" route, BUT LOOKING AT CALTOPO I THINK IT"s TOO STEEP. So, I think your route remains best, but backtracking to the NW along the official "Gardiner Basin Trail" from the Gardiner lakes could still yield more sightseeing, longer trip.

Thanks again!

-TPC

#greenourride https://sites.google.com/view/electricb ... adventurer
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