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    Ellen Sebastian reviewed Root Glacier and Stairway Icefall Trail

    2 months ago

    Incredible!! It was so much fun to explore the glacier, cross small streams, blue waterfalls, and a deep blue pool on the left side of Root Glacier. (The pool was located to the far left of Root Glacier, before the dirt portion, and well before the intersection of Root and Kennicott glaciers.) And the views of the surrounding mountains are amazing.

    This is a great choice if you're taking Kennicott Shuttle for a 1-day trip ($109/person for a shuttle from Glennallen area). We got to McCarthy at 11, to Kennicott at 11:30, started the trail at 12, arrived at the glacier at 1, left the glacier at 3, and caught the shuttle back at 4. We had time to cross the dirt portion between 2 glaciers and walk on the further glacier for a minute before turning around.

    Safety: We had hiking boots, microspikes or yak trax, and poles. We felt totally safe, didn't even come close to slipping. You could hike up the glacier in regular hiking boots, but then couldn't explore some of the steeper portions to see waterfalls etc. A guided hiking tour would be a waste of money in those conditions. it was great to explore the glacier on our own instead of following a group.

    We didn't see any wildlife.

    Ellen Sebastian reviewed Crescent Meadow Loop Trail

    3 months ago

    I highly recommend taking the bus 1-way to Crescent Meadow, then hike from Crescent Meadow to Sherman Tree (or vice versa). This will save you from spending 1 hour taking 2 separate buses between Moro Rock and Sherman Tree. Along the way you can see 2 meadows, and a peaceful environment with very few people in between Crescent Meadow and the Congress Trail.

    i saw deer sleeping and eating among the giant sequoias, and a family of marmots including babies who had made a den under a giant sequoia.

    bring bug spray!!

    Ellen Sebastian completed Monarch Lakes Trail

    3 months ago

    Ellen Sebastian reviewed Monarch Lakes Trail

    3 months ago

    NPS website is not lying when they said "start early because it's a west-facing slope". The first mile was incredibly hot and sunny in the afternoon. After the first mile, it gets much easier. it took me 3pm-10pm including lots of picture-taking and slow progress on the way up.

    Saw many marmots and grouse. If you hear a deep "whoop whoop whoop whoop", that's the male grouse's mating call.

    This year, going earlier in the season would've meant fewer mosquitoes, less heat, and less crowds if you're also visiting Lodgepole. Late May-early june would be ideal this year. June in years when there's heavier snowfall.

    The views were pretty good but I wish I had hiked Eagle Lake instead, considering I started late.

    Ellen Sebastian reviewed Hole-in-the-Wall Rings Trail

    6 months ago

    if you have a wimpy car, approach from the south on paved roads!

    i tried to access hole-in-the-wall from the north via Cedar Canyon Rd, which is marked as ok for 2wd vehicles. but i turned around as I wasn't certain my compact rental car could handle it, especially in the rain.

    Ellen Sebastian reviewed East Rim Trail to Observation Point

    6 months ago

    make sure to go on a sunny day for the best views. the valley looked gray and dull brown instead of its normal brilliant orange due to a combination of cloud cover and wet rock.

    there is no snow on the trail currently.

    took me 5 hours hiking slowly with breaks. surface is all paved, slickrock, or packed dirt. the hike is relatively easy for its length and elevation change.