(written by bill)
Paul, Christian, and I (Bill), took our annual Yosemite Snow Creek hike this past weekend which we’ve been doing for the past 4 years. We had Christian’s father-in-law (Martin) join us on this hike which worked out well. Martin and I hiked up during the day on Thursday and set up camp, then Paul and Christian came up after work arriving to a warm fire around midnight. It took Martin and I about 3 1/2 hours to get to the top and about 3 hours for Paul and Christian (they’re younger).
The Snow Creek trail-head is located about a mile past Mirror Lake in Yosemite Valley and goes up ~2,700′ in 1.6 miles with 134 switchbacks along the way. This trail is classified as strenuous and should not be taken lightly, it’s a tough one. Once at the top (6,700′), you are rewarded with a magnificent view of Half Dome (8,836′), along with Mt. Watkins (8,500′), Clouds Rest (9,926), Basket Dome (7,612′), and Indian Rock (8,522′).
The weather couldn’t have been better on Friday, with bright sunny skies. Paul and Christian hiked to the top of Mt. Watkins, about a 2,000′ climb (with the aid of snow shoes) while I took some time to wander around and photograph the Snow Creek area.
When we awoke on Saturday the weather had changed and was more winter like, cloudy and cold. A perfect opportunity to sit around a warm campfire and talk about our next trip.
After lunch we started down the mountain which is almost as tough as hiking up. The Snow Creek trail is long, rocky, steep and pounds away mercilessly at a hikers legs during the decent. To add insult to injury once the valley floor is reached there remains 2 1/2 miles to the backpackers parking lot. The one blessing is that these last couple of miles are relatively flat and much easier to hike.
All in all, another great backpacking trip.
Click here to see more photos of our Snow Creek Hike in Yosemite
Hope you enjoy…