An Epic Hike For the Ages!
If I look back at all of the hiking I’ve done in my life, there are a just a few moments that stay on the surface of my memory. Moments where I’ve turned a bend in the trail or come up over a ridge and gained a view of such amazing beauty, I’m forever changed. They are of a time and place that I hope will never leave me. They become a part of me in a way I have trouble explaining. These moments have added an important piece to my view of the world and the beauty it holds. One of these moments occurred on Kearsarge Pass in the Eastern Sierras of California.
I was invited by my friend Sam (who you might remember from previous hikes #18, #21, #39) for a weekend trip to the Eastern Sierras. Also in the expedition was Nikki, Hobie, Mike, Jamie, and Chris. (Chris has joined me on a few other hikes, #6, #21).
Thoughts about the hike:
- Although Onion Valley Campsite is the only campsite in the area that you can reserve, there are primitive campgrounds around Flower Lake that are worth looking into.
- I felt great in the high altitude after taking Diamox for the days leading up to the trip. I plan on taking Diamox on all high-altitude adventures from here on out!
- Would you believe a backpacker recognized me on the trail from my website?? He even asked me what hike number I was on! I was bewildered. Bewildered, I tell you!
- A change of socks was a lifesaver on this hike. There no way to underestimate how a nice and dry pair of socks got me to the pass.
- I learned on the Telescope Peak hike #21 that listening to music on my iPod can really give me an extra boost of adrenalin. There were a few miles where I hiked on my own, allowing me to be with my thoughts and music.
- I discovered on this hike how important it is to pack your headlamp in an easily-accessible pocket. I spent far too many minutes rummaging blindly through my pack for it.
- I was happy to not find any trash or graffiti on the trail.
- I wore a small daypack on this hike. However, in retrospect, I should have worn my larger backpack, which has a chest harness that allows me to clip in my camera strap. Without it, I always felt like my camera was going to slip off my shoulder.
- You haven’t really camped until you’ve made beer pancakes!
- Onion Valley Campground Reservations
- Natural Born Hikers – Kearsarge Pass
- BestHike.com Blog – 10 Best Hikes in the Eastern Sierra
- Inyo National Forest
Hike #42 Trip GPS Stats:
- Date of hike: August 15th, 2009
- Location: Independence, Inyo County, California
- Length: 9.8 miles
- Duration: too long!
- Average speed: ±1.3 mph
- Altitude at start: 9,200 feet
- Altitude min.max: 9,200/11,760 feet
This map was made with the data my GPS captured on the hike. For a more detailed trip report map, check this out.