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Kings Canyon National Park

Jun 282016
 

It’s summer.  Time for backpacking the high country, wherever that is for you.  For me, that almost always means the mighty high Sierra that runs along the eastern border of California.  For those who’ve never been, it’s so hard to describe the beauty, ruggedness and majesty that lives in those mountains.  Here, we’re approaching the Rae Lakes basin on the eastern side of Kings Canyon National Park, looking down from the almost 12,000 foot Glenn Pass.  An amazing stretch of country and the Rae Lakes area is one great place to make camp and explore.

rae-lakes-panorama-5-2

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View more images from Kings Canyon at http://www.journeysinlight.net/NationalParks

Jul 182015
 

Mid summer.  That time of year when the high elevations in the mountains start opening up with many snowless trails.  I can smell the pines now.  Feel the quiet.  Alas, I’ll have to wait another year to get up there.  A little tick bite has curtailed my hiking and exploration life.  Rae lakes in Kings Canyon, high in the Sierra, is always a wonderful destination.  Here, Jo Anne is doing her best impression of high a wire artist to cross the creek as we head out.  One of the lakes and the peak of Painted Lady make for an enticing reminder to come back again.

mountain-lake-hiker-creek-crossing

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View more images of Kings Canyon at www.journeysinlight.net/NationalParks.

Jun 192014
 

Can you smell the pine tree scent?  Hear the quiet?  I can.  It’s so peaceful and relaxing here.  The trail isn’t even that steep.  Depending on how far you want to go it’s a relaxing day hike or the start of an adventurous mountain back pack.  It’s on the Kings Canyon National Park Rae lakes loop trail at the end of the road.  I hiked for a few hours, went past the infamous mist falls, then up to Paradise Valley, turned around after a relaxing lunch, and went back.  A nice day hike indeed.  Very few other people, following a raging, swollen river much of the way.  So beautiful!

pine-tree-mountain

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View more images of the Paradise Valley hike and Kings Canyon National Park at www.journeysinlight.net/NationalParks

Sep 122013
 

I like this photo.  And still it hardly does justice to the beauty that is constant and everywhere in this little slice of Kings Canyon National Park.  It took us the better part of 2 days to hike in to Rae Lakes; up and over Kearsarge pass and then Glen pass at just under 12,000 feet to get to this incredible valley of lakes and creeks at around 10,500 feet.  The smells, the stillness, the peace.  Awesome!

kings-canyon-panorama-1

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View more images of Kings Canyon and Rae Lakes at www.journeysinlight.net/NationalParks.

Dec 012012
 

I was disappointed that the sun didn’t show itself at all, but I think its the moisture of rain and fog that help these huge trees survive for the eons that they do.  The foggy canopy also made the area that much more surreal.  Have you ever been up close to one of these Sequoias or a redwood?  I’ve never grown tired of them.  They’re always a bit mystical in my eye.  A glimpse of how small my individual human form is in juxtaposition to these old, stately, massive forms of nature.  If you haven’t already, go hug one of these massive trees.  These are in General Grants grove on the western side of Kings Canyon National Park.

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View more photos of these massive trees at www.journeysinlight.net/NationalParks

Aug 202012
 

Have you ever slept in a tent above 10,000 feet when you had to backpack for 2 solid days just to get there?  It’s awesome!  The beauty, the quiet, the accomplishment all converge and forms this feeling of… well, something akin to bliss/excitement/peace.  And to be at Rae Lakes in the eastern part of Kings Canyon?  You can just about double everything.  To get here we chose to come up the eastern side, rather than do the loop trail from the western side.  We hiked up and over Kearsarge pass and then the almost 12,000 foot Glenn pass to get the the lakes.  Such pristine beauty I can hardly describe.  The sunlit mountain seen here is called Painted Lady.

See many more images of the Rae Lakes journey and others in Kings Canyon inside the “National Parks” category at www.journeysinlight.net

 

Jan 092012
 

Yep, it certainly was roaring… and boiling and crashing and raging.  It was incredible to see and be in the presence of such powerfully flowing water.  And, mind you, this is a creek!  I always think of a creek as small and gently flowing.  But, this is up at about 5000 feet in Kings Canyon National Park in the Sierras in June in one of the biggest water flows in years.  Anyway, I had the pleasure of hiking up along the roaring currents trail for 4 miles or so before the flow leveled off in Paradise Valley.  I usually like the quiet of the mountains, but on this hike, the creeks constant roar was my friend.  Can you hear it?

Purchase a print or digital download of this photo by clicking on the image.

Many more images of Kings Canyon at www.journeysinlight.net/nationalparks