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Crowds near Labor Day weekend - best way to arrange visit

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posts: 123
reviews: 2
Crowds near Labor Day weekend - best way to arrange visit

Just read the trip report by LeBiscuit. Thank you for your report. You have posted on some of my questions for our upcoming trip the last week of August. The crowd reports are making me a bit anxious. We flipped our trip to do Yosemite first then Sequoia at the end and abanonded the Bear Paw overnight - determined to be too much compressed hiking in 48 hours.

We drive from White Wolf in Yosemite to Cedar Grove in King's Canyon on a Wednesday and overnight there. Thursday am through Saturday will be dedicated to Sequoia. We stay at Wuksachi Thurs and Friday night. We will do a long hike - probably Lakes trail - on Friday. Other suggestions? Saturday night - of Labor Day weekend - we go back to Fresno to fly out early Sunday. What should I expect regarding drive times? Especially with Labor Day approaching. I had hoped Sequoia would be the relaxing part of our trip. Best way to arrange things during the days to avoid congestion? We of course plan to see Sherman tree, Congress, Mono Rock, Crescent Meadow and maybe Baldy trails. Advice appreciated. Should we expect to take the shuttle between areas and just leave our car parked at Wusachi? Suggestions on flatish meadow trail to do a 3-5 mile loop run, close to Wuksachi? Thanks

posts: 123
reviews: 2
1. Re: Crowds near Labor Day weekend - best way to arrange visit

I just read some ideas posted on CapeHope's itinerary question after I posted and re-read some responses to my previous trip questions. I think Heather Lake is on the Lake's trail - I had thought of only going this far and not all the way to Pear Lakes, hopefully I wouldn't be short changing on the scenery. With the dry summer, is there still water at the Tokopah Falls? I also remember Redwood Canyon recommended - probably want to add that too. Thinking about doing a run around Zumwalt meadow in Cedar Grove before leaving that am - hopefully no bears will be out to chase me.

Los Angeles
Destination Expert
for Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
posts: 10,210
reviews: 87
2. Re: Crowds near Labor Day weekend - best way to arrange visit

Wuksachi will not be crowded - it's only the campgrounds!

You won't notice crowds (except at General Sherman tree and in the last remaining pool at Lodgepole). However, judging by what we just saw, it's still going to be relatively green and lovely around the meadows, and it will be quiet everywhere. Many of the campground people just stay in their campgrounds (can't say I blame them, it's very relaxing and there's lots of wildlife).

Wuksachi is wonderful because it has its own trails over to the Lodgepole area, through pine forests, and it is very close to the Big Trees. For some reason, everyone gloms around the General Sherman tree, but when we hiked to Crescent Meadow, it felt just like the good old days - only a handful of families and the occasional set of backpackers there. Wonderful.

I wanted to do the Heather Lake trail this time, but we had our dogs with us. It is an amazing hike (truly, the vistas out on the Lodgepole Canyon are amazing) and Heather Lake is a great destination (you won't be shortchanging anything). We did check out the trail head at Wolverton meadows - there were maybe six cars, so again, not crowded. Heather Lake is absolutely worth it if you can get yourselves up there (it's the first part that's steep, then it's not so bad). It does lure you into wanting to go backpacking, though.

Have a great time! Let us know how it goes (I haven't eaten at Wuksachi for awhile, but last time we did, it was great - let us know how the menu is). We got breakfast stuff at the Lodgepole Store (they have coffee at their snack bar too if you decide to do breakfast/picnic stuff).

If you head out to Crescent Meadow before 9 a.m., you can skip taking the shuttle - but the shuttle is still a good way to see it (park across from the History Center, the parking lot there has a nice trail around the hill by Beetle Rock, and if you're like me, you'll enjoy just sitting on Beetle Rock and watching the butterflies, ground squirrels and lizards, it's the same granite as on Half Dome...but with way less than half the effort).

Moro Rock is also on the same shuttle as Crescent Meadow - and it hasn't been too crowded.

We saw only one bear, which is as it should be during the day. Zumwalt Meadows will still be beautiful (and the drive is spectacular). I'm guessing Tokopah Falls is very, very low (the creek itself is just barely moving - and that's because there was some rain about three weeks ago; by September, you may want to think of another hike, like Congress Trail or Redwood Canyon (there was virtually no one there, either).

So unless you are camping, you have no worries.

posts: 123
reviews: 2
3. Re: Crowds near Labor Day weekend - best way to arrange visit

Thanks for the update and encouragement. Getting excitied! I will give a post trip update. Enjoyed OhiloHick's trip report - he has pitched in on a couple of other trips we took out west. Thanks again!

4. Re: Crowds near Labor Day weekend - best way to arrange visit

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