Thunderbolt and Knapsack Pass

Dusy Basin to Thunderbolt Pass to Knapsack Pass to Bishop Pass Trailhead (15 miles, +3,300/-4,800 feet). We awoke this morning to a phenomenon I have never experienced.  One half of our tent had severe condensation and one half did not!  As it turns out, we had a heavy dew overnight, and the half of the…

Dusy Basin

Bishop Lakes Trailhead to Dusy Basin via Chocolate Lakes (13 miles, +3,600 feet, -2,000 feet). The weather yesterday looked just like the day before, so we decided to take a zero day in Bishop and wait for some sunshine.  It was an eerie day because the valley filled up with smoke from the Ferguson and Lions…

Tyee-George Saddle

Tyee Lakes Trailhead to Sabrina Campground (11 miles, +2,700/-2,700 feet). Today was a great… learning experience! Half Cookie and I set out on our semi-annual hiking trip with an eye towards completing the classic North Lake-South Lake loop (with the cross country variation over Lamarck Col and down into Darwin Canyon) in the John Muir…

Isabelle Glacier

Isabelle Glacier Trail (11 miles, +2,500/-2,500 feet). It was great to have a zero day yesterday after our backpack around the Maroon Bells!  But since we finished a day early, we had a chance to do a day hike today.  We decided to hike up to one of Colorado’s disappearing glaciers, the beautiful Isabelle. The…

Day 3: Buckskin, ‘Bundy’, Willow, and East Snowmass Passes

West Maroon Creek to East Snowmass Trailhead (17 miles, +3,800/-6,200 feet). Okay, let me apologize right away.  There are over 90 pictures in this post!  I spent a lot of time deleting pictures, but this was one of those days where I just couldn’t kill my darlings. We awoke to crystal clear skies and a…

Day 2: Hasley, Frigid Air, and West Maroon Passes

Lake Geneva Trailhead to West Maroon Creek (18 miles, +5,800/-4,700 feet). So I guess it was a little too slopey last night.  MixMaster and I kept sliding towards the river.  I got good rest but not much sleep.  Oh well. We got an earlier start this morning and that was a good thing because we…

Day 1: Trail Rider Pass

Snowmass Creek Trailhead to Geneva Lake Trailhead (17 miles, +4,600/-3,400 feet). Time again for my annual trip with MixMaster and ChiaGlyph.  Woo hoo! So far we’ve done the Trans-Zion Trek and Paria Canyon.  This time we decided to head for Chia’s home turf, Colorado.  Chia has had his eye on the famous “Four Pass Loop”…

Crow Pass

Crow Pass Trail to the pass and back (7 miles, +2,300/-2,300 feet) We’ve had an amazing time in Alaska, and this was probably my favorite of all our great hikes. Unlike the Harding Icefield Trail which started below treeline, this one started above, which greatly reduced our anxiety about running into a grizzly.  This was…

Portage Pass

Portage Pass Trail (5 miles, +1,000/-1,000 feet) On our way from Seward to Anchorage we passed a turnoff for Whittier that would take us through the world’s longest tunnel shared by trains and automobiles.  It is one lane with railroad tracks down the middle, so each side gets a turn once an hour, alternating every…

Harding Icefield Trail

Harding Icefield Trail to Top of the Cliffs (5 miles, +2,500/-2,500 feet). I have been looking forward to this hike for a very long time.  When we started planning our trip to Alaska, this was the first trail to make the “must do” list.  And today didn’t disappoint. We started out very early at the…

Eielson Alpine

Eielson Alpine Trail (2 miles, +1,000/-1,000 feet). We got so, so lucky today!  To get near Denali you have to take a 4 hour bus ride (and 4 more hours back out!), and I scheduled that ride months ago, not knowing what the weather might be.  About 70% of the people who take the bus…

Savage Alpine

Savage Alpine Trail to Savage River (4 miles, +1,400/-1,600 feet). Today we had a full day for hiking so we decided to try something bit more challenging.  The farthest you can drive on your own into Denali National Park is Savage River, and there is a trail that starts a couple of miles away, climbs…