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The spectacular and remote upper Stubblefield Canyon

Do you have 2 days or 2 weeks? Yosemite High Route thru- & section-hikes

For the fullest experience, the Yosemite High Route is best completed as an end-to-end thru-hike. For most backpackers, however, it will be more practical to undertake the route in more bite-sized pieces. These section-hikes are: More compatible with family and work commitments; Loops, and therefore logistically simpler than point-to-point itineraries; and, Less physically difficult, due to […]

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A big horn sheep in Rocky Mountain National Park. I also saw moose and herds of elk.

Comparison: Nolan’s 14 vs. Pfiffner Traverse || Wilderness, difficulty, and flow

As part of a 650-mile, 39-day self-supported hike along Colorado’s Continental Divide last summer, Sam Chaneles completed both Nolan’s 14 and the Pfiffner Traverse. Nolan’s 14 and the Pfiffner Traverse are both high routes in the Colorado Rockies, suitable for advanced backpackers and adventurous ultra runners. While they both feature lengthy off-trail sections and alpine […]

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The loose Class 3 gully below Paiute Pass, at the head of Thunderbolt Creek on the Pfiffner Traverse.

Words of caution: FKT’ing or “running” the Pfiffner Traverse

In a recent photo essay in Trail Runner, Sunny Stroeer gave a hearty endorsement of the Pfiffner Traverse, for which she set a 55-hour fastest known time (FKT) last summer: “The Pfiffner Traverse is a mountain runner’s dream: miles of smooth, gentle singletrack that flow through high mountain meadows and across infrequently traveled passes along the […]

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Harriet Lake alpenglow

Where should the Yosemite High Route start and finish?

As a distraction from more time-sensitive and critical work, recently I began drafting the Yosemite High Route Guide, which I’m planning to release in late-winter. This first edition will be about 90 percent right; it will need a revision after double- or triple- checking my work and field-researching some minor areas of interest in summer 2019. […]

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Unnamed ruins in a deep alcove in Grand Gulch, between Bullet and Shieks Canyons

Quickstart guide: Cedar Mesa & Grand Gulch, Utah || Wild archaeological epicenter

Years ago I was turned on to Cedar Mesa by Alan Dixon, but needed inspiration this spring from the roamings of Paul Magnanti to plan a trip of my own there. It was a perfect couples trip for Amanda and me: the wilderness that I needed after a winter inside, with an additional and more unique dimension […]

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angel-pass-mid

Trip Report || Wind River High Route, Loop 4

Trip Data Dates: Tuesday, August 29th to Saturday, September 2nd, 2017 Route: Wind River High Route, Loop 4 Weather: Temperature 60’s to 70’s, rained only one day, otherwise sunny and pleasant Distance: 43 miles Time: 4.5 days Trailhead: Elkhart Park Passes: Angel Pass, Douglas Lake Pass, Alpine Lakes Pass, Indian Pass Background Chris Barrett, Paul […]

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