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Which Lake to camp at in Vogelsang area?

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Which Lake to camp at in Vogelsang area?

Postby ODS » Wed Sep 04, 2019 3:35 pm

Heading to this area last weekend of this month, via Fletcher Creek Trail. Been there before and headed down Fletcher Creek to Emeric Lake for 1st night camp. Then on down to Merced lake and LYV 2nd night.

This time around I am looking to camp closer to Vogelsang area and want to set up camp for 2 nights, giving me a full 2nd day to explore the area.

Would anyone like to offer up their list of top 3 lakes in that area to camp at?

Been looking at them all. Thinking Upper Fletcher, but also like North side of Boothe (though farther day hike to Vogelsang Peak and Lewis Creek area). Other lakes to consider?

Thanks in advance for any info.

~ODS~
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Re: Which Lake to camp at in Vogelsang area?

Postby balzaccom » Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:04 pm

Last time I was through there ( a few years ago) Boothe Lake was closed to camping. Not sure what you mean by Upper Fletcher--Townsley?

We liked camping up on the ridge to the southwest of Emeric---but I've also heard that Babcock is the nicest of the lakes in that area...
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Re: Which Lake to camp at in Vogelsang area?

Postby Phil » Thu Sep 05, 2019 3:53 am

Fletcher Lake isn't much...more a pond, but it does give you the proximity to Townsley (upper Fletcher), Hanging Basket and beyond that you're looking for day hiking. Camping is allowed at Boothe, last I heard. If you're routing via Fletcher Creek, Babcock is a bit far away from Vogelsang, but it is a beautiful little lake with quite a few nice sites. It is one of my favorites in the general area. Emeric, eh, it's ok is you get over to the west side. Since you also mentioned Lewis Creek though, if you want to do some exploring, I would consider Bernice and use that as a base to access the lakes to the east of there. I think that's a really good bet.

You shouldn't have too much competition for camping the end of the month, but you do need to be ready for weather and colder temps. It is shoulder season, afterall.
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Re: Which Lake to camp at in Vogelsang area?

Postby AlmostThere » Thu Sep 05, 2019 7:53 am

https://www.nps.gov/yose/learn/manageme ... endium.pdf

The maps in the appendix are illuminating in the matter of camping around the high sierra camps.
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Re: Which Lake to camp at in Vogelsang area?

Postby balzaccom » Thu Sep 05, 2019 8:40 am

Thanks for that, AT. I wonder why those areas in Kerrick Meadow are closed...?
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Re: Which Lake to camp at in Vogelsang area?

Postby Phil » Thu Sep 05, 2019 7:52 pm

It's the Vogelsang carve out. Too much alternative trail traffic needing a place to camp to take out Boothe and Vogelsang Lakes that has absolutely no bearing on the HSC itself, I guess.

Last time I pulled up the compendium to link it for someone else asking about Boothe, the appendix wasn't there. That cutout for Vogelsang Lake is new to me, must be a recent addition. Anyhow, like AT says and the official map shows, Boothe is still good to go. I would overnight there if you need to, but still try to work out an exploration day based out of Bernice, though. The chain of lakes below Parsons and Simmons peaks is money...and it's very hikeable.
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Re: Which Lake to camp at in Vogelsang area?

Postby ODS » Mon Sep 09, 2019 2:08 pm

Thanks all for the suggestions.

I like the idea of getting to Bernice, but it'll depend on what time we get to the trailhead since that'll add about 3 miles and quite a bit more gain and drop over the pass and up to the lake. I think we'll probably scout Boothe first, then Townsley, and if we still have energy/daylight and don't like what we see then we'll go over the pass to Bernice. (which probably really means we're going to Boothe because tired legs usually veto any dreamed about plans while staring at maps)

My current plan for the 2nd day day-hike is to go up Vogelsang Peak, and after that gain the ridge to Parsons Peak and get over there, then hopefully down toward Ireland Lake and loop back over to camp at Boothe or Townsley, etc.
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Re: Which Lake to camp at in Vogelsang area?

Postby ODS » Mon Sep 30, 2019 1:16 pm

UPDATE:

Stayed at Boothe. Great lake and a nice campsite on the south west shore. Several other hikers on the trail that day, but they all went to the HSC backpacker's site so we had Boothe to ourselves night one. After our day hike on day two we returned to our site to find a group of 3 that set up camp about 30 yards from us. That was a bit disappointing, especially because there was no one else at the lake and they could have chosen anywhere else, but I knew that was part of the trade off of staying in this area.

Day 3 we went x-country from Emeric to Echo Lake. That was a grueling day, but both climbs were rewarded with amazing views. The climb out of Emeric revealed the entire Cathedral Range, what a great spot to enjoy the view and take a nice lunch break. Getting off that pass and down to Echo Creek was a bit more of a slog than I expected, just route finding and some knicks and cuts from minor bushwacks and a few slips on some slick, muddy rocks. Then picking our way through some of the rock outcrops and getting up onto the ridge south of the Matthes Crest really zapped our reserves. The view was again spectacular at the top of the climb, but by then it was after 4PM and with about 1.5 miles left we pushed on and got to Echo Lake with enough time for a quick dip in the lake to clean up and then get our selves settled and gather some firewood and hunker in for the colder night coming.

We moved our trip up by 3 days so we could fit it in before the winter storm that hit both Saturday morning and Saturday night. We came out via the Cathedral Lakes climbers trail, and then I hitched back to my car at the TM permit office, doubled back to get my buddies and we were off. One nice plus, the TM grill was open for a burger. With our first plan being to exit on Tues Oct 1st, I never thought it'd be open, but moving up the trip and exiting on Saturday meant we got a well deserved meal and my favorite right after coming out of the back country, some cold sierra mist. We made our way to Mammoth to clean up and spend the night before driving back on Sunday. We learned while in Mammoth Saturday night that Tioga closed at 4PM that day due to the coming snow.

Super stoked that my group was able to mobilize and get in before the storm, was worried we were going to have to cancel but in the end we made it and had another great trip in Yosemite!
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