THE ROAD IS OPEN! Kings Canyon is waiting


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Half Dome Village
Sep 19, 2016 - 08:19pm PT
Here are a handful of photos from the 75 mile backpacking trip I did last month.

The trip began with with a 5000ft climb out of Kings Canyon.

Day 2, I went over Granite Pass. After a few miles of rolling terrain, I descended 3000ft into Tehipite Valley.

Day 3, I followed the Middle Fork of the Kings River. It would mighty impressive in the spring, but this was end of August. After intersecting the JMT I hung a right and traveled east to Palisade Lake.

Day 4 was a shorter rest day. I began heading south over Mather Pass and camped at Lake Marjorie.

Day 5, I hopped over Pinchot Pass, which was the high-point of the trip at 12,130ft. Then I followed Woods Creek to the west, until it joins the South Fork of the Kings River.

Day 6, I knocked out the last 8 miles back to the car and drove home.

Mountain climber
Olympia, WA
Sep 19, 2016 - 09:45pm PT
That climb out of Zumwalt Meadow to Granite pass will cull-out many, with pesky bears if you don't make it over the pass. Simpson Meadow is like it maybe was 70 years ago. I was last there 39 years ago in 1977, and I'll bet it's largely unchanged. Deserted and a faint trail though tall grass and cottonwood trees? We saw no one until the JMT/PCT.

Half Dome Village
Sep 19, 2016 - 10:29pm PT
Yep, saw two bears the first day. Tehipite Valley still feels remote. The valley floor is pretty thick with bushes, so I had to walk a few extra miles before I found a clear spot to camp. But the trail is pretty well established, with just some short sections where it's crowded by the vegetation. I saw a couple people near Simpson Meadow, and then no one until the JMT.
Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Sep 19, 2016 - 11:49pm PT
Awesome photos Bryan!
John M

Sep 20, 2016 - 12:06am PT
Bryan!!! thanks for the high country stoke... sweetness.

Trad climber
the middle of CA
Topic Author's Reply - Sep 20, 2016 - 09:40am PT
Sweet! That trail up to Granite Lakes is rough.

There's a faint trail along the south side of Simpson Meadow that leads to a trail crew camp by the water if you end up in that area again and want a plush site.

Thanks for sharing the pics. I'm jealous, I tried to do that loop a long time ago when my friend dropped and lost our tent somewhere along the trail to Granite Lakes. With crazy mosquitoes and thunderstorms predicted we bailed so it was fun to see some of what we missed!

Trad climber
Fresno, CA
Oct 4, 2016 - 04:47pm PT
Got snowed off of Harrington yesterday with about a half a mile to go. What a shame after that gnarly long approach from the Lewis creek TH. The 'unmaintained trail' from frypan meadow up to Grizzly lake is almost indiscernible now especially after the fire.
Anyhoo, more of the Matterhunk!

Vitaliy M.

Mountain climber
San Francisco
Oct 4, 2016 - 05:08pm PT
Woots out there!? LOTS OF STOKE!


Trad climber
Santa Clara, CA
Oct 4, 2016 - 05:42pm PT
KC is a radical place.

I had another thread with other pics. The Other Valley...

Thread's almost 10 years old, some pics I'll have to dig back up.

Social climber
Desolation Basin, Calif.
Oct 4, 2016 - 06:50pm PT
Bryan, what an great trip. Thanks for the pictures.

Bascuela, sorry you missed it, so close!

V, nice!

bluey, Kings Canyon is by far my favorite national park.
Paul W

Trad climber
Visalia, CA
May 1, 2017 - 04:15pm PT
The road is once again open.

The place is still seemingly on fire.

I cut down a bunch of tat and scored several pices of booty on opening weekend. The canyon wasn't very busy despite the sheer beauty our wet winter has provided.

Trad climber
the middle of CA
Topic Author's Reply - May 7, 2017 - 09:06am PT
I missed it by a week but glad to see Paul and Kristina made opening weekend!

Well, better late than never!

The plan was to stay another night and boulder with the wife and kids today but it started snowing on our cabin last night so we headed home. Crazy swing in weather from Thursday to last night.

Gym climber
Minkler, CA
Topic Author's Reply - Apr 23, 2019 - 02:55pm PT
Ok I'm a little early, but it opens this coming weekend (4/26/19).

Still tons of snow in the high country so it could be a good year to ski some hard-to-get-to lines!

Looking towards Kings Canyon from the top of Cloud Canyon last week. Palisades waaaay off in the distance.
looks easy from here

Santa Cruzish
Apr 23, 2019 - 03:52pm PT
What's all that white stuff? I'll be back in August, I expect you to have it cleaned up by then.

Rattlesnake Arch

Social climber
Home is where we park it
Apr 24, 2019 - 04:55pm PT
Is Moro Rock in condition?

Social climber
Apr 24, 2019 - 05:39pm PT
it most definitely is. you still have to walk the 1.5 mile road but it's totally clear of snow and should be open soon.
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