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Roaming in the Tioga Pass High Country

We decided to hike off trail where the colorful mountains in the Tioga Pass Area raise above 12,000′ elevation. We were ready for an adventure in an area that revealed beautiful pink heather lined tarns, small lakes where the creeks were wide, high country lakes, many with no names. We explored when we were inspired to check out an area closer and I took my fishing pole along.

Where: Yosemite National Park
Distance: About 10 Miles
Difficulty: Moderate to Strenuous
Elevation Range: 9,596′ – 11,322′
Date: June 24, 2015
Maps: Tioga Pass, Mount Dana, Koip Peak

I thought you might enjoy some pictures of our ramblings to the high country of the Tioga Pass area. I didn’t include a track or profile of this adventure since we really just wandered around.

We parked our car at the Mono Pass Trailhead, about 5.6 miles east of the Tuolumne Meadows Campground and 1.4 miles south of Tioga Pass. After using the restrooms there and stowing our stuff in the bear box, we headed up this historic trail. The Mono Pass Trail is an old Indian trail that was “discovered” by Americans around 1852 when Army Lieutenant Tredwell Moore pursued Yosemite’s Chief Teneya’s band through Tuolumne Meadows and over Mono Pass. The Army did not catch up with him that day.

We crossed a few creeks on our adventure.

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We climbed a few mountains. (First photo by Gail Gilbert)

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We saw some pretty creeks, widening out in places and creating calm pools with lots of small trout in them. The heather was just starting to show off its pink blooms.

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Some areas in the creeks were very calm and other spots were tumbling over rocks, creating small waterfalls.

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We visited some beautiful high lakes. (Last 4 lake pictures by Gail Gilbert)

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I did some fishing and released all that I caught.

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My hiking buddies found some good rocks and relaxed for a while.

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When we looked closely, we discovered some brightly colored flowers along the way.

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I sat on a rock and watched a cloud for a while.

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While I was fishing, I watched Gail and Steve come down the mountain from their exploring and it sure showed off a better perspective in just how big this country is when you see a teeny tiny person in the picture. Can you spot them along the shore?

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Little did I know that Gail was taking a picture of me fishing while they were coming down off that mountain.

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We headed back down, following creeks, game and use trails. This country is just so gorgeous.

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We discovered another one of those metallic balloons in the middle of nowhere. This one had a “Frozen” theme, so that got me singing to myself “Let it go, let it go. . .” for much of the day. Dang, now that song is back in my head. Do I have you singing it along with me now?

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Prior blogs in this area:

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