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[Yosemite]

Which direction would you go LYV to Lyell or Lyell To LYV?

Hiking, backpacking, running, biking, climbing, rafting, and other human-powered activities in the Sierra Nevada and elsewhere outside Yosemite National Park

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Which direction would you go LYV to Lyell or Lyell To LYV?

Postby drb1966 » Mon May 23, 2016 6:43 am

I'm hoping to get onto the JMT at Lyell Canyon as I've heard its easier to get the first come first serve permits there, however I'm a bit bummed I'll miss the first section from LYV to Lyell. I'm contemplating do that as a day hike since I was told I can't camp anywhere along the way without a permit. So I know it's a decent distance and if you had to do it in a day which direction would you recommend. I'm leaning towards just trudging up as it would be less impact on the knees. Any thoughts on that plan or can you offer a two day solution? Thanks in advance
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Re: Which direction would you go LYV to Lyell or Lyell To LY

Postby Phil » Thu May 26, 2016 4:45 pm

I would most definitely go Lyell to LYV unless climbing big hills is your thing. With Lyell>LYV, you climb once up to Vogelsang, and that's really all. The only real steep downhill that's rough on the knees is from Vogelsang>Merced Lake. No big deal though, and the rest is more or less made up of moderate descents and flats. Check your map and see, it's all pretty obvious on the topo.

Yeah, you need a permit, so why not get one on a walk-up at Tuolumne ? Lot's of nice places to camp on that route.
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Re: Which direction would you go LYV to Lyell or Lyell To LY

Postby drb1966 » Fri May 27, 2016 10:38 pm

Thanks Phil.
I am hoping to get a walk-up but maybe I'm not understanding how it can be used. I'm hoping to get a first come first serve permit to get on the JMT from Lyell canyon and go south. Can I use that same permit to back track to pick up the section from Lyell to LYV? Or is that a different permit?
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Re: Which direction would you go LYV to Lyell or Lyell To LY

Postby transponster » Sun May 29, 2016 7:28 am

To complete the section from Tuolumne Meadows to LYV, you would need a permit for Cathedral Lakes.
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Re: Which direction would you go LYV to Lyell or Lyell To LY

Postby Phil » Sun May 29, 2016 7:21 pm

transponster wrote:To complete the section from Tuolumne Meadows to LYV, you would need a permit for Cathedral Lakes.


Great point. Thanks for the clarification, Transponster. I get into the mindset of going point A to point B as efficiently as possible. Lyell>LYV or LYV>Lyell was the question, but yes, to technically and formally complete the section of the JMT from Happy Isles/LYV, from Tuolumne, you would have to backtrack via the trailhead at Catherdral Lakes. And yes, you'll need a different permit for that.

You also can't get a permit for the entire JMT from Yosemite Valley on a walk-up anymore unless you luck into a cancellation. Don't count on it at all. Still can from Tuolumne though. If you absolutely have to complete that section to feel good about it, since you're at Tuolumne to begin with anyhow, you might as well try to get in at Cathedral. After that leg, you can exit Happy Isles, shuttle back up to Tuolumne, spend the night at the backpacker's camp, or, in the line at the permit office, and pick up the JMT permit first thing the next morning. If it's for that day, get it and go. If it's for the next day, head back to the backpacker's camp for another night. With next day entry though, you can't pick up the permit at the wilderness office until after 11am the day before.
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Re: Which direction would you go LYV to Lyell or Lyell To LY

Postby balzaccom » Thu Jun 02, 2016 8:03 am

One more point. There is one more steep downhill on the hike from Tuolumne Meadows to Happy Isles---and it's the last fives miles down past Nevada and Vernal Falls. Don't forget that. It will do a number on your knees!
Check out our website and blog at: http://sites.google.com/site/backpackthesierra/home
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