Peak 11500' Dayhike

Morgan Brown

Glacier NP
New Mexico
New Zealand
Sequoia/Kings Canyon
Bloody Canyon
Cathedral Lakes
Cathedral Range
Clouds Rest
Mount Conness
Mount Dana
Dunderberg Peak
Glen Aulin
Hetch Hetchy
Koip Peak
Mono Pass
North Dome
Peak 11500'
Ragged Peak
Mount Ritter
Sentinel Dome
Smith Peak
Stanton Peak
Mount Starr King
Tresidder Peak
Yos. Valley
Vogelsang Peak
Yos. Falls
Yosemite Falls 2
Virgin Islands
Kim & Morgan
Mom & Dad

Books that Morgan

The High Sierra: Peaks, Passes, and Trails
By R.J. Secor. The High Sierra hiking/climbing guidebook. Amazingly exhaustive. An indispensible trip planning aid.

On September 13, 2003, Kim and I climbed "Peak 11500", an unnamed summit a couple miles from the Vogelsang High Sierra Camp. While the High Sierra Camps are by no means a "wilderness experience", this one is nontheless somewhat remote; 8 miles+ from the nearest trailhead. After climbing Mount Dana the day before, we stealth-camped near Puppy Dome, just a couple hundred yards from the truck, which was parked at the Tuolumne Wilderness Permit station. After getting our gear ready, we set out at 7:45 AM at a quick in the chilly morning air, hoping to reach the "slog" section of the Rafferty Creek trail before the air turned too hot.

A couple (apparently sans permit) had pulled into the parking lot as we ate breakfast and set out by 7:15 or so. We passed them on the first uphill on the Rafferty Creek Trail -- judging from their pace it seemed that the day might end up in tears. But later we would talk to the guy, and found out that they were Brits from London who'd done lots and lots of backpacking all over the US.

We found a good campsite with a nice view of Rafferty Creek Valley near Fletcher Lake by 10:30, for a respectable 2h45m time over an 8-mile route with a mere 1500 feet of elevation gain. Kim relaxed while I set up the tent, and we soon at lunch in preparation for a yet-to-be-determined dayhike. We were feeling kind of lethargic after lunch, so a climb of Vogelsang Peak seemed out. Instead, I suggested that we hike northwest to explore the region near Evelyn Lake. Peak 11500' looked well-positioned to get a birds-eye view of the area, particularly of the forbidding Ireland Lake, which I had always wanted to see.

We started slowly up the trail to Evelyn Lake, and left the trail at a crest, heading southeast, toward Peak 11500'. I remember stopping a couple times, wanting just to give up. This was nothing that a Balance Bar couldn't solve! After getting a chocolate boost, I was energetic again, and soon we found ourselves at the saddle south of Peak 11500'. From there, the peak is merely 200 feet higher, so we could hardly pass at the option of climbing it. Views down to Ireland Lake and of the high peaks to the east were stunning.

Click on small images to start "slide show"
vp00-tripmap.jpg (141 KB)

vp02-west-pano.jpg (455 KB)

View to the west from our camp...
vp02a-vogelsang-zoom.jpg (170 KB)

Zoom on Vogelsang Peak on the ...
vp02b-kim-camp.jpg (221 KB)

Kim at our camp near Fletcher ...
vp02c-morgan-fletcher.jpg (227 KB)

Morgan and Fletcher Peak, with...
vp02d-conness-camp.jpg (178 KB)

Mount Conness and our camp (hi...
vp02e-morgan-trail.jpg (212 KB)

Morgan climbing the trail to E...
vp02f-morgan-trail.jpg (211 KB)

Morgan climbing the trail to E...
vp03-evelyn-lake-pano.jpg (290 KB)

Panoramic view of Evelyn Lake ...
vp04-11500-parsons-fletcher-pano.jpg (258 KB)

Peak 11500' at left. Black pe...
vp04a-kim-approaching-saddle.jpg (230 KB)

Kim climbing up to the saddle ...
vp05-ireland-lake-pano.jpg (453 KB)

Panoramic view of Ireland Lake...
vp05a-kim-lyell.jpg (222 KB)

Kim ascending summit ridge of ...
vp05b-summit.jpg (247 KB)

Summit ridge of Peak 11500', f...
vp06-kim-summit.jpg (155 KB)

Kim and summit cairn on Peak 1...
vp06-summit-west-pano.jpg (378 KB)

Summit panorama from summit of...
vp07-koip-crest-pano.jpg (339 KB)

Zoom on Koip Crest from summit...
vp08-morgan-summit-pano.jpg (324 KB)

Morgan and panoramic view of s...
vp09-morgan-descent.jpg (187 KB)

Morgan after ascent of Peak 11...
vp10-townsley-lake-pano.jpg (334 KB)

Townsley Lake and Fletcher Pea...
vp10a-kim-descent.jpg (220 KB)

Kim on descent from Peak 11500...
vp11-11500-parsons-townsley-pano.jpg (386 KB)

Panoramic view of Townsley Lak...
vp11a-kim-camp.jpg (225 KB)

Kim in camp after climb of Pea...
vp12-fletcher-vogelsang-sunset-pano.jpg (345 KB)

Fletcher Mountain sunset panor...
vp12a-conness-clouds-zoom.jpg (99 KB)

Mount Conness and evening clou...

© 2006 , Stanford Exploration Project
Department of Geophysics
Stanford University

Modified: 05/07/06, 19:23:34 PDT , by morgan
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