Nice chilly hike from Quaker Meadow Camp road. ~10 miles RT, with wind and clouds at the summit. Sun came out on the way down to make for a beautiful day!
Quick acclimatization hike while staying in Camp Nelson.
Some patchy snow on the trail from the beginning which changed to full coverage around 8,800'. I really enjoyed walking through the forest on this hike and the views from the summit and from a few clearings along the way were great.
With Ryan, followed by Breckenridge in the afternoon. Trip Report.
I think this is one of the nicer hikes in the area. Though I'm usually a snob about hikes below the tree line, this one has wonderful scenery throughout, even if it doesn't have consistent views of the horizon.
I started at Quaking Aspen Campground, and easily found the trail marker between campsites 23 and 24. The trail stays mostly in the forest, which was good for the hot summer weather on the day I hiked. About a mile and a quarter from the campground, the trail becomes very overgrown, and the only way to follow the path is to find the narrow strip of dirt with no plants growing in it. I was a little hesitant to be pushing through bushes higher than me in bear country, but I made plenty of noise. Once you hit the switchbacks, the trail is clear and easy to follow. There is also a nice stream half way up the trail that provided cool water to dip my hat in. There are great views of the Needles from the switchback section, but no other views until the summit. Be mindful when you get to the saddle between two small peaks at about 8000 feet elevation, four miles from the campground. It is easy to loose the trail here, I did, but just head south around the back of the southern of the two small peaks.
Getting to the summit was fairly easy, just be ready for the scrambling required to reach the summit itself. You can either head past the summit and then start up at the Bear Creek trail junction, or head up a little earlier to avoid backtracking. I cut up early and then descended to the junction for some variety. Views from the summit are great, with the Sierra Crest spanning the eastern horizon.
It took me five hours round trip from Quaking Aspen campground, including slowing down through the overgrown section, loosing the trail at the saddle for a few minutes, and lunch at the summit.
I started at Quaking Aspen at 3:30 p.m. Patches of snow could be found at 7,000 feet and above. As I hiked and jogged quickly upward, slush began to rain down on me, cooling me off. From 8,000 feet upward, heavy snow began to fall and more than 6 inches of fluffy powder covered the ground. I reached the top before 5:00 p.m. and headed down in the dark with a headlamp. It was pleasant at higher altitudes and visibility was good through the snow up high, so to get back, I took a shortcut cross country until I found my old tracks along the trail and headed down into the unpleasant slush and fog that wet my trail runners and made it a longer slog back to the truck than the trip up had been.
The hike is mostly through dense forest with good views at the top.
Hiked along the Summit trail from Quaker Meadow. Enjoyable views. Missed this one earlier in the year due to snow closure on SR190.
Great hike! Fabulous wildflowers and good views of the Needles and Kern River Canyon.