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Twin Lakes "Loop" Hike Questions

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Twin Lakes "Loop" Hike Questions

Postby AceBoog » Mon May 01, 2017 11:55 am

Hi everyone, I am a new member and this is my first post. I am from the Philadelphia area but I did a lot of backpacking years ago in Utah including long trips involving cross country navigation. Unfortunately life got in the way of backpacking and many years went by without backpacking or using any navigation skills at all. I have recently started backpacking again, I am planning my first ever trip to backpack in California. I was able to obtain a permit for Sequoia/Kings Canyon, for me and two of my friends on 8/13/17-8/18/17 entry and exit on Twin Lakes trail. When I made the reservation the Ranger I spoke to said that this hike could be made into a 30ish mile loop. I bought a Nat. Geo. Sequoia/Kings Canyon trail map to figure out our route. I would love someone to let me know if I have a viable loop route picked out, and is this 30 something miles?

My thought for a Twin Lakes "Loop"

Lodgepole Visitors Center ----> Twin Lakes
Twin Lakes ----> Stillman Pass
Stillman Pass ------>Ranger Lake
Ranger Lake ---->Belle Canyon
Belle Canyon ------>Comanche Meadow
Comanche Meadow ---->Marvin Pass
Marvin Pass ---->Rowell Meadow
Rowell Meadow ---->Jo Pass
Jo Pass ---->Twin Lakes


Thanks for any help



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Re: Twin Lakes "Loop" Hike Questions

Postby zacjust32 » Mon May 01, 2017 1:28 pm

Welcome AceBoog!

That's a pretty good beginner loop (i.e. not too ambitious mile-wise) through some nice scenery. As far as logistics go, you are starting on the 13th and exiting on the 18th, that's 6 days for ~30 miles, plenty of time for layovers and exploring. I'm sure Mav will second when I say that you NEED to stop by Lost Lake. It really is the highlight of the area. Silliman Pass is beautiful and worth spending a little time at. IMO Comanche Meadows and Belle Canyon aren't anything special, just hot dusty trail. Rowell meadow is kinda the same, depending if it's still green or all dried up. If you have the time and energy Mitchell peak is a must with spectacular views. Also, Jennie Lake is just off of your route but definitely worth taking a look, it can get a little busy though.

As far as mileage, you can get a Tom Harrison Map, which has trail mileages on the map. Or use my favorite: Caltopo! Just draw a line and it'll give you elevation profile, mileage, and a ton of other information.
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Re: Twin Lakes "Loop" Hike Questions

Postby oldranger » Mon May 01, 2017 2:13 pm

As a former backcountry ranger in that area I would recommend the following alteration of your route--but this assumes good map reading and off trail skills if you choose the off trail option.

Night 1 Twin Lakes, Night 2 & 3 Either ranger or Lost Lakes. Night 4 Seville Lake, Night 5 Jennie lake or Clover Creek.

This route can be done by trail or you can cross country between ranger and lost and lost and seville and seville and Bell Canyon Entrance. There is lot to explore on your short days at the lakes. I don't think Dropping down to comanche and up to marvin adds much to your trip except miles Yeah Mitchell Peak View is great if it is clear and your decision to head in that direction might depend on smoke conditions. The entire area is likely to be prime mosquito time this year and undoubtedly Rowell Meadow will be the worst of all so you do not want to spend a night anywhere near there. Bring headsets and lots of bug spray. There are at least 1/2 dozen lakes with fish for those in your group who are anglers.
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Re: Twin Lakes "Loop" Hike Questions

Postby AceBoog » Mon May 01, 2017 2:35 pm

Awesome thanks a lot for the help guys, oldranger is it possible to cross country between seville and jennie? I am also wondering about water crossings. I was told by the Ranger who I reserved my permit with, that I may need to worry about high water crossings, I can clearly see plenty of spots where my route on or off trail crosses water. Do the crossings on trail have any kind of bridges or am I crossing open water either way?
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Re: Twin Lakes "Loop" Hike Questions

Postby oldranger » Mon May 01, 2017 2:46 pm

There will be no dangerous water on your route. I never tried to do Seville to Jennie off trail and looking at the map I would go n. to the saddle between 9963 and 9251 before heading w. if I were to do so. The terrain is pretty complex and forested so I wouldn't recommend that route unless you are a real expert in navigating in that terrain.
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Re: Twin Lakes "Loop" Hike Questions

Postby zacjust32 » Mon May 01, 2017 2:53 pm

The highest creek is SIlliman Creek but that was only knee deep in May last year. August should be a trickle.
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Re: Twin Lakes "Loop" Hike Questions

Postby maverick » Mon May 01, 2017 3:02 pm

Hi Ace,

Welcome to HST!

I'm sure Mav will second when I say that you NEED to stop by Lost Lake.


:nod:

Seville Lake is nice too, it also has a bear boxes. As Mike mention, skeeters will be bad, be prepared! If you're into fishing, visit the Sheep Camp Lakes. Belle Canyon / Comanche Meadow :thumbsdown: .
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Re: Twin Lakes "Loop" Hike Questions

Postby jeremiahkim » Sat Aug 05, 2017 4:00 pm

zacjust32 wrote:The highest creek is SIlliman Creek but that was only knee deep in May last year. August should be a trickle.


We just did a quick last minute three nighter to Ranger Lake and did not encounter any water crossings above the knee, even by the late afternoon.

Silliman Pass is wonderful and the north-east side of Ranger Lake has a great vista to take in a sunset.

Twin Lakes can get a bit crowded during the weekend, though it doesn't seem like you'd hit any issues. We spent our first night there on a Thursday and was one of three parties which was great—on the way down we passed by wall to wall tents and the lake was quite busy.

There are established sites along the trail that are not indicated on the NatGeo map with bear boxes. We found the USGS 7.5 minute map for Mt. Silliman quite useful and it has much of your proposed route included (most notably, minus the first three miles out of Lodgepole).

Happy hiking!
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