Map of the Pear Lake area, in Sequoia National Park. We stayed at Wucaschi Lodge the night before the trip, and started skiing from Wolverton.
Luckily, it snowed for three days a few days before we arrived, so there was plenty of snow at the trailhead. This snow would all be gone by the time we left four days later. But we only had to hike for about 10 minutes on the way out.
Heading up Heart Attack Hill
Made it to the Hump (9,500 ft) in about 3 hours, where a group of six Snowshoers from San Diego who were also staying at the Hut, caught up with us
View from the Hump towards the Hut
Crossing Heather Lake
Bruce McVicker and Ken Deemer, about to head down the "low route" into the drainage
Bruce and Sung Byun weave through obstacles on the way down the low route.
Ken near the bottom of the descent, where we skinned-up again for the last rise to the Hut
Made it to the Hut in about 5.5 hours. 9,200 feet here.
The "Front Lawn" above the Hut. The Matterhorn on the right.
Sunset over the Hump
Heading up to Skier's Alta. Pear Lake is just below the crags in the background
Sung and Bruce climbing the ridge around the back of the Matterhorn
Ken approaching the Matterhorn
At Pear Lake overlook
Skiing up Alta Bowl. Dark clouds coming from the West
The Snowshoers taking a slightly different route.
The fog was moving in and out, but we kept going up.
As we neared the top of Alta Bowl visibility dropped to about five feet and it started to snow and graupel. So we had lunch and then headed back down to the hut by following our tracks until the fog lifted.
After some rest at the Hut, we took an afternoon Front Lawn tour. It's all good!
Sung and Ken near the top of the "Front Lawn" area
Ken skiing down the Front Lawn
Top of Front Lawn. The Hump at center in the distance, and the Watchtower peaking out of the fog
The Watchtower in fog
Front Lawn fun.
Later, we checked out the Snowshoer's snowshelter
Ken in the snowshelter built by snowshoers Rob and Don
Going up towards Matterhorn Saddle for sunset. The Hut is in the bunch of trees below
Going up to the Matterhorn Saddle
Photo time at the saddle!
Sunset from the Matterhorn Saddle. The Watchtower on the left.
As the sun sank lower, the sky kept getting oranger.
No color added. It just kept getting better.
The sun peaked out for a last hurrah, and a little alpenglow on the snow.
Next day the weather was clear, so we go back up to Skier's Alta
Backside of the Matterhonon the way to Skier's Alta
Skiing back up the tracks we had put in the day before on the way down.
Just below Skier's Alta, but clear this time
At Moose Lake Overlook
Near the top of Skier's Alta (11,340 ft.)
View East into the Tablelands and beyond from Skier's Alta
Milestone Peak, on the High Route.
View Southeast from Skier's Alta
View West from Skier's Alta.
Bruce on first run down Skier' s Alta. It's steeper than it looks here.
Went back up for a second run.
Second run down Skier's Alta
After Alta, we recuperated in the Hut for awhile, and then went back up to Matterhorn Saddle for sunset
At Matterhorn Saddle. Interesting rainbow things happening in the sky
Looking up into the Tablelands with afternoon sun and long shadows
A portion of our first run tracks down Skier's Alta
Bruce McVicker at Matterhorn Saddle
After the sun set, the snow firmed up, and we were able to ski down making turns without breaking through the crust.
The "Escalator" track
The Top of the Escalator
Pear Lake Cirque
Skied across the lake
A little sluff at the end of the Lake
Selfies on Pear Lake
Front Lawn just outside the Hut
After lunch at the hut, its time for the 3.5 hour ski back to the car, with slightly lighter packs.
There's uphill on the way out too, but not as much as on the way in.
A little open water on the way
Never a dull moment. :)
Thanks to Bruce McVicker, Ken Deemer, Sung Byun for a great trip!