Forum Index > Trail Talk > Wonderland 10 Day Itinerary Feedback
 Reply to topic
Previous :: Next Topic
Author Message
Stroszek
Member
Member


Joined: 16 Mar 2023
Posts: 4 | TRs | Pics
Stroszek
Member
PostSat Mar 18, 2023 9:06 am 
Hey all! I was lucky enough to win the EA lottery and get an early timeslot so I assume Iíll have my pick of campsites and dates. This is the itinerary Iíve put together. Iím not dead-set on the dates, but given that I may never draw as good a timeslot again I figured I might as well aim for peak wildflower season. Iíve been backpacking the past few years and am in decent shape though Iím not an athlete by any means. Iím based in the Midwest and have backpacked in Isle Royale, the Porcupine Mountains, and the BWCA. The hardest trail Iíve done is the Minong Ridge, and the most Iíve backpacked in a day is 18 miles, though obviously even the most rugged areas of the Midwest donít have PNW let alone Wonderland levels of elevation gain. Iím a lightweight but not ultralight backpacker, I need to update my lighter pack but I think my base weight is in the low teens. I would also cache food (via mail) so I would only have to carry 3-4 days at a time. I think this itinerary is doable for me though it will definitely be challenging, particularly the first day. Iím planning to train on the weekends by backpacking as many miles as possible on the Ice Age Trail, which obviously isnít ideal in terms of elevation gain but there isnít really anything close to me that is. Thoughts? TIA!

Cyclopath
Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
Randito
Snarky Member



Joined: 27 Jul 2008
Posts: 9072 | TRs | Pics
Location: Bellevue at the moment.
Randito
Snarky Member
PostSat Mar 18, 2023 9:19 am 
One thing to stood out to me was that your 1st day is almost 13 miles and 2nd day under 5. If you are staying in the National Park Inn at Longmire, no problem, but if you are traveling to get to the trailhead. I would think about having below average for trip mileage for the 1st day to allow time spent traveling, farting around in the wilderness information center getting your permits, making adjustments to your pack and the fact that your pack is at maximum weight. Mileage is one factor to consider , elevation gain is also important, here is one tool for figuring the total effort involved, including the elevation changes. https://www.nwhiker.com/HikeEval.html Compared to many other long distance trail, the Wonderland trail rarely cruises along at the same elevation, you are basically always either climbing or dropping.

Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
Stroszek
Member
Member


Joined: 16 Mar 2023
Posts: 4 | TRs | Pics
Stroszek
Member
PostSat Mar 18, 2023 9:49 am 
Good point, thanks! Iím trying to avoid Devilís Dream and save Indian Bar/Summerland for the end of the trip, but Iím realizing that White River might be a better starting point to accomplish that while avoiding that brutal first day (not to say that itíll be easy). Iíll be carrying a camera so I donít necessarily mind having short days and long days on the trail if the difficult days are still doable.

Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
williswall
poser



Joined: 30 Sep 2007
Posts: 1917 | TRs | Pics
Location: Redmond
williswall
poser
PostSat Mar 18, 2023 2:59 pm 
Looks good, you have some shorter days but they will serve as recovery time and let you linger at cool spots. I agree that your first day could be tough if you are travelingÖif not staying at Longmire maybe stay at cougar rock or someplace close in the night before. Good luck!

I desire medium danger williswall.com
Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
Bruce Albert
Member
Member


Joined: 01 Sep 2007
Posts: 143 | TRs | Pics
Bruce Albert
Member
PostSat Mar 18, 2023 9:59 pm 
I have a couple of thoughts; First would be to spend night one at Devil's Dream. This site seems to get a bad rap I don't fully understand. You are going in flower season; there will be bugs, lots of bugs in lots of places. You'll acclimate. But stopping at Devils' dream means you drop your overnite stuff and have a the afternoon to explore and wander about in Indian Henry's instead of hurrying through because you have miles to go. Day two to Klapatche will still be short enough to allow needed lollygagging at Emerald Ridge and St. Andrews Parks on the way by. Pushing through past Klapatche to camp down at the Puyallup River would be just...wrong. Golden Lakes/Sunset Park is worth a night spent. All that can be said about Eagles Roost is that it is a short jaunt from Spray Park through which you will again want to sightsee and lollygag.On my first long ago Wonderland we spent two nights, legally, in Spray Park for just that reason. Which brings me to editorial point number one, which is that Spray Park and Indian Henry's both are large enough that an intelligently sited camp area, yes right up there in the meadow country with a view like god intended, would be just fine. Sticking people down in the woods without reason is just...dumb...and you don't see them ripping out the Ranger Cabin up in the meadows at Indian Henry's in the name of wilderness purity, do you? Anyhow movin' right along around the Mountain I can't speak to Dick Creek, or Granite Creek, but Mystic Lake is worth a night; give my love to the great, great grandchildren of the original nuisance bear. If I remember right Mystic Lake to White River is a reasonable day. Summerland and Indian Bar are essential for a night each; climb up open slopes above the Indian Bar shelter to reach ther really pretty Cowlitz Park. Nickel Creek may be a nicer spot than Maple creek...or not...and then it's just up and over and back to Longmire. Editorial point number two is that permits or not, prescribed itineraries with places you have to be each night without alternatives are dumb as well. Bowron Lakes Park in BC, roughly analogous to the Wonderland in terms of length and popularity (even though it's a canoe loop) has a permit system with designated spots where they let a given number of people embark each day and leave it up to them where they camp and how long they take within reason. It works really well in my experience and it's nice to have the latitude come stormy day or lazy day to just hang and not move camp at all. Down at Rainier such things will have you run afoul of the law. Anyhow, prepare for mucho up and down, and enjoy your trip; even with the nuttiness imposed by the NPS the circumnavigation of Rainier is pretty awesome.

vogtski
Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
zimmertr
TJ Zimmerman



Joined: 24 Jun 2018
Posts: 873 | TRs | Pics
Location: Newcastle
zimmertr
TJ Zimmerman
PostSat Mar 18, 2023 10:13 pm 
Bruce Albert wrote:
Granite Creek,
We stayed at Granite Creek. It was nice. But very very cold. It was August and got down into the 20s that night. And bathing in the river was.... Fun.

Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
Joseph
Joseph



Joined: 13 Jun 2018
Posts: 213 | TRs | Pics
Location: Seattle
Joseph
Joseph
PostSun Mar 19, 2023 9:21 am 
My feedback: congratulations on winning the lottery. But, you have both Summerland and Indian Bar on this trip, which will make it very, very difficult for another group to piece together an itinerary (with Indian Bar and Summerland full, it requires people to hike White River to Nickel Creek or even Maple Creek. Which is very long and probablyoutside the abilities of other hikers. I know you won the lottery, but out of consideration for others' chances, perhaps don't camp at both Summerland and Indian Bar - choose one?

Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
zimmertr
TJ Zimmerman



Joined: 24 Jun 2018
Posts: 873 | TRs | Pics
Location: Newcastle
zimmertr
TJ Zimmerman
PostSun Mar 19, 2023 9:23 am 
Joseph wrote:
Summerland and Indian Bar - choose one?
Team Summerland!!!

Flickr | Strava

Joseph
Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
Bruce Albert
Member
Member


Joined: 01 Sep 2007
Posts: 143 | TRs | Pics
Bruce Albert
Member
PostSun Mar 19, 2023 11:02 am 
Joseph wrote:
I know you won the lottery, but out of consideration for others' chances, perhaps don't camp at both Summerland and Indian Bar - choose one?
Noble sentiment but respectfully disagree. You are coming a great distance and may only do this trip once. You have taken the same chance as others and drawn a short straw. Use it. Take the best itinerary available to you, enjoy it, and be grateful for it.
Joseph wrote:
it requires people to hike White River to Nickel Creek or even Maple Creek. Which is very long and probablyoutside the abilities of other hikers.
So it goes. As a person looking at the less fun side of the "All trips are not for all people." equation, I get that, and don't find it upsetting, unjust, or any of that; it is just the way of the world. I had my opportunities; it is others' turn now. A possibility to consider I never thought of of before would be to start at Box Canyon of the Cowlitz and go clockwise. This gets the least memorable to me Stevens Canyon chunk of the trip out of the way on day one and finishes with the "Sound of Music" romp down Cowlitz Divide.

Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
Joseph
Joseph



Joined: 13 Jun 2018
Posts: 213 | TRs | Pics
Location: Seattle
Joseph
Joseph
PostSun Mar 19, 2023 12:16 pm 
Bruce Albert wrote:
Noble sentiment but respectfully disagree. You are coming a great distance and may only do this trip once. You have taken the same chance as others and drawn a short straw. Use it. Take the best itinerary available to you, enjoy it, and be grateful for it.
Yeah, the thing is, you don't have to hog all the camps though, and considering how hard it is to piece together an itinerary, it seems like the fair thing to do to not gobble up the premier camps - esp. on the east side where if the two premier camps are taken, it makes it impossible for others to complete the WT. True - winning "the lottery" does technically allow you to hog all the camp spots - I'm just saying why not consider others' chances when selecting the camps ? Plus, many, many lucky ones get the lottery multiple times and are on their 2nd, 3rd, 4th or more trip on the WT. Its not like you win the lottery once, do your once in a lifetime trip and that's it. I've been on the FB WT page long enough to know that so many of the regulars (including the guy who runs the FB page) hike this trip annually one way or another (either by lottery or by joining someone who won the lottery). I would be for a one year mandatory break from applying for those who have won the lottery.

Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
Eric Hansen
Member
Member


Joined: 23 Mar 2015
Posts: 697 | TRs | Pics
Location: Wisconsin
Eric Hansen
Member
PostSun Mar 19, 2023 1:44 pm 
Stroszek, pm me if you are interested in thoughts on best training routines while in the Midwest. I'm Wisconsin based but have considerable background in Western backpacking trips with sizeable vertical. 46 Grand Canyon trips. Most of the high peaks and alpine routes in Glacier NP, 2 month long Sierra trips, and more.

Off trail rambler
Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
reststep
Member
Member


Joined: 17 Dec 2001
Posts: 4721 | TRs | Pics
reststep
Member
PostSun Mar 19, 2023 2:05 pm 
It would be interesting to know why the park does not allow use of backcountry wilderness zones when hiking the Wonderland Trail. https://www.nps.gov/mora/planyourvisit/upload/2004-BC-Camps-and-Zones_access_Jan2018.pdf

"The mountains are calling and I must go." - John Muir
Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
Hesman
Member
Member


Joined: 24 Oct 2005
Posts: 926 | TRs | Pics
Hesman
Member
PostSun Mar 19, 2023 4:16 pm 
I rather enjoyed my night at Devils Dream. Did an evening stroll to Indian Henryís Ranger Station and back. Also met some people there who I ended up chitchatting with the time I was there and I remember one person from the group was jealous of my cheddar cheese. He wanted all my cheese and we had a good laugh about him keeping his greedy hands off my cheese. I would camp at Devils Dream instead of South Puyallup. I would also switch Dick Creek to Mystic Lake. You would have a much more enjoyable evening resting from a day of hiking on the shore of the lake. I wasnít all that impressed with Dick Creek and I didnít even spend the night there. If you switch from Dick Creek to Mystic Lake, then I would also switch from Granite Creek to Sunrise Camp (maybe include a side trip to Mt. Fremont. I did a side trip to Sunrise and got an ice cream cone.) or White River. This would let you have more to time to relax and check stuff out at Summerland. When I camped at Summerland I met a group of hikers who were spending the night at Summerland and Indian Bar. I was jealous of them.

You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time. - Abraham Lincoln Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened. - Dr. Seuss
Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
zimmertr
TJ Zimmerman



Joined: 24 Jun 2018
Posts: 873 | TRs | Pics
Location: Newcastle
zimmertr
TJ Zimmerman
PostSun Mar 19, 2023 6:08 pm 
The water source near Devil's Dream's has a cool private pool above the waterfall you can scramble up to as well. Just make sure no one is collecting water below you first. +1 on switching Dick Creek for Mystic Lake

Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
Malachai Constant
Member
Member


Joined: 13 Jan 2002
Posts: 15798 | TRs | Pics
Location: Back Again Like A Bad Penny
Malachai Constant
Member
PostSun Mar 19, 2023 7:23 pm 
Dick Creek is a good base camp for exploring the Elesian Fields but a mediocre camp for the Wonderland as it is small and not much safe areas for exploring nearby. Mystic lake Camp is well below the lake but within a short walk.

"You do not laugh when you look at the mountains, or when you look at the sea." Lafcadio Hearn
Back to top Reply to topic Reply with quote Send private message
   All times are GMT - 8 Hours
 Reply to topic
Forum Index > Trail Talk > Wonderland 10 Day Itinerary Feedback
  Happy Birthday Ice Girl, Laural!
Jump to:   
Search this topic:

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum