Iíve been trying to figure this route out and only this section has me somewhat stumped. I was curious on the traverse from east Alta to Alta pass; Would it be better to stay high on the ridge and connect to the pct or bushwhack my way down to park lakes and up to The Stone kingdom if I Ďpotentiallyí take my dog with me? I found a couple vague reports but nothing in enough detail to make sure my dog doesnít slow me down if scrambling or boulder fields are involved on my descent. Thanks for any beta or info. 🤙🏾
Well, a lot depends on your dog, who you know better than anyone.
I haven't done that traverse but have been on both sides of it and my old dog would've handled it fine back in his day. I'd much rather traverse that ridgeline than drop down to Park Lakes. My younger dog could probably handle it too but it would be harder for him.
I'm not sure where Chikamin Pass is...if you're talking about the ridge that runs from East Alta to Peak 6300 you definitely don't want to take a dog on the northern portion. East Alta to Park Lakes is fairly pleasant.
From Rachel, you climb a brutally steep but short trail to Rampart Ridge, and take a right toward Lila Lakes. From above the Lilas a well worn but seldom used trail leads all the way to the summit of East Alta, switchbacks down the other side into a tiny meadow-y basin, drops through steep forest/brush/moss and lands you on a talus apron/forest margin strip meadow trail that runs to the old horse camp high above Park Lakes. There are remnants of old constructed trail all the way, but the section from East Alta to the PCT below Park/Glacier saddle is mostly cross country unless you miraculously pin yourself to the old path. It is obliterated in places and there are a few rough spots to get through.
From the old horse camp, you can follow the PCT for a short distance to the bootpath that leads to Glacier Lake...
The trail from the Lilas to East Alta is nearly invisible, but I promise you: it is there. You can see the switchbacks heading up the southwest face of E Alta in Google sat view.
Thanks for the link and info Tom and contour. That helps a ton. Iím excited to try this loop. I run up to the rampart ridge usually 4-5 times a summer in the early morning hours and always was curious if the route would go. Thought I was on to something new but glad itís feasible route. 👌🏾
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