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Best Direction for GCT

Hiking, backpacking, running, biking, climbing, rafting, and other human-powered activities in Yosemite National Park

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Best Direction for GCT

Postby hiker97 » Fri May 01, 2009 9:24 am

Do folks have a suggestion on which direction is best for hiking the Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne? Not sure if you're better off with all of that climbing in one shot at the end up to White Wolf with the lighter pack on day 4 versus spreading out the climb over days 2-4. Opinions?
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Postby cornbread » Fri May 01, 2009 10:21 am

My wife and I are doing the GCT loop in August, starting at White Wolf and doing the "big descent" first. Neither of us wanted to do that climb at the end of the trip.
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To descent or not to descent

Postby Random Walker » Fri May 01, 2009 11:23 am

Well, the rabble I am backpacking with has decided to end our adventure with the ascent to White Wolf.
The plan is to stop about a third of the way and camp our last night in the Morrison Creek environs.

For me the practically gentle hike from the Glen Aulin TH to Glen Aulin proper, camping somewhere before
California Falls sounds much more inviting than a 4500 foot drop from White Wolf to the Tuolumne River on the first day.

(Of course we reserve the right to change any of our well intentioned plans on a whim.)
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Postby bill-e-g » Sun May 03, 2009 6:17 am

Upstream. Staring at the falls in front of you instead of at your back... (relatively speaking)
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Postby Heybooboo » Mon May 04, 2009 9:31 am

I'm with bill-e-g. I would rather hike up than crashing down trails. Looking up at falls, streams, creeks is always a beautiful site. And no matter how well my boots fit I still get blakc toenail from my toes being jammed on downhill trails. And my testicles get tired from all of the sproing factor on downhill steps (I know, bad visual, but true).
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Postby hiker97 » Mon May 04, 2009 9:18 pm

Having hiked the TM to Waterwheel portion, I can appreciate the great visual image of looking at those waterfalls as you hike upstream and approach them. That other image was not something I had in mind but thanks for the precaution! I guess if your knees are killing you on day 1, that camping at Morrison Creek partway down would be a good option too. Thanks!
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Postby gwegan » Wed May 06, 2009 4:45 pm

UP Stream. No question.

Depending on weather and your condition the hike to White Wolf is never fun and can be downright miserable. On the other hand the up stream walk is shaded and has plenty of water (and the opportunity for a midday swim)
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