A short three-day trip into the Granite Chief Wilderness this week. I went in at Squaw Valley on the Granite Chief Trail, which is the most convenient entry point for me because the TART bus stops a hundred yards from the trailhead. I’m glad to have completed brushing on this trail last year, as it makes for a nice walk. The trail has been logged out, so is in good shape, but there are erosion problems on some of it that make it rocky going. I turned south on the PCT where there is a new trail sign to replace the one that had deteriorated and eventually disappeared. Two small creeks still cross the trail here, but both are small and will probably dry soon.
My first trip of 2013 in the Granite Chief did not come until past mid-July. This is despite the fact that with the early and mild winter, I could probably have started backpacking in May. But my life if busy.
I headed in at Alpine Meadows Trailhead, and walked over the saddle to Whiskey Creek Camp the first night. I’m amazed going in here how many people there are day hiking on this trail, even late into the evening. I’ve heard that busy summer days see 5000 people on this trail, almost all of them dayhikers and only a few backpackers. No one was at Whiskey Creek Camp, even though it was a Saturday night in mid-season.