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Topic: Wind River Range or Bighorn Mts, Looking for 4-5 day loop late July< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 08 2014, 9:28 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My Alaska trip may not work this summer so I'm looking for a 4-5 day loop trip in WY.   Did a portion of the Teton Crest last summer.

Any thoughts, opinions or recommendations on a loop in in the Wind River Range or Bighorn Mts?

Also open to other suggestions in WY.

Timeframe would be late July.

Thanks.
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 09 2014, 9:40 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Be sure to be prepared for bugs. If the Bighorns are anything like the South Absaroka along with the Winds expect high stream flows even into latest July. We might get really warm and have a quicker melt but if not it will be a bit buggy too. If Travis doesn't reply here message him, I'm not sure there is a better source in or out of print for the Bighorns. You should get good action on the Winds. If you'd like to see photos from the Gros Ventre let me know. It is a very special range as well.

My signature link has lots of photos of the Northeastern Winds and Southern Absaroka. Be sure to see all the albums to find all hiking galleries. No need to belong to facebook. If you like something you see let me know and we'll talk.

Hope you find what you're looking for Three, let me know anyway I can help. All I'll ask is that you come to one of our Continental Divide Communist Association Meetings.


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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 09 2014, 11:53 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Consider the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness on the Montana-Wyoming border.

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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 09 2014, 1:57 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(hikerjer @ Apr. 09 2014, 11:53 am)
QUOTE
Consider the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness on the Montana-Wyoming border.

Thanks DC and Hiker Jer,

Will check info on Absaroka Range.  I was unaware of it though I probably drove through it a few years back enroute to Yellowstone.

DC, isn't it real close to suicidal to attend something called the Continental Divide Communist Association in a place like WY?  or does it meet in Jackson?  :D
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 09 2014, 7:31 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Being the equality state and where we rely on the socialism of infrastructure as much as any other you'll be OK.

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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 09 2014, 9:17 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(double cabin @ Apr. 09 2014, 7:31 pm)
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Being the equality state and where we rely on the socialism of infrastructure as much as any other you'll be OK.

Now the real deal breaker...do they have free food at the meetings...to each according to their need etc? :cool:
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 09 2014, 9:18 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Nothing to see in the Wind's, move along ..... :;):

If you "have" to see the Wind's there's a few loops that will fit your time scale.


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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 09 2014, 9:22 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

For the Bighorn Mountains, the best known loop trail is the Solitude Loop Trail 038. But it is 53 miles long plus any mileage there and back on a spur trail from the trailhead. So I'd consider that a bit over-ambitious for your time period. A full week would be better.

Otherwise, there are probably four trailheads from which you could fashion a loop without any significant retracing of your path. But it would be your choice. I don't know enough about your interests to recommend one or another.

There is a fifth choice that would not require much retracing, but that trailhead is best accessed with a high-clearance vehicle. I'd never recommend you attempt to access it with a passenger car. That trailhead is Coffeen, accessible from the north. So I'll tentatively rule that out.

The four trailheads you might consider are:
    1) Battle Park, accessible from highway 16 and FS 24 skirting the south and west of Cloud Peak Wilderness.
    2) Edelman or Medicine Lodge THs accessible from the north, highway 14, and west, FS 17.
    3) Shell Creek TH accessible from the north, highway 14, and west, FS 17, but not so far south as Edelman or Medicine Lodge TH. That means less driving on dirt/gravel roads.
    4) Hunter Creek TH accessible from the south, highway 16, and FS 19.
There are several maps available at my website (see link in my signature line) showing the trailheads above. I'd suggest that if you are interested in the Bighorns you look at those maps and see what you think. If you insist on a loop trail, you are not going to get into the highest elevations of the Bighorns. You will be above timberline on occasion — depending upon your choice. But getting up to the higher peaks is a different project than what you describe.

My website also provides coordinates for overlaying my maps into Google Earth for a 3-D view of your choices.


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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 10 2014, 10:41 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I would do the Winds and go to Titcomb Basin.  You can make a loop out of it or just hike straight in to Island Lake.  It just doesn't get much better - the mosquitos will biblical but don't let that stop you.
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 10 2014, 11:52 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Will snow still be a problem by third week of July?
I was originally aiming for Teton Crest but I don't wanna have to use an ice ax so I thought I'd try some other things...
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 11 2014, 10:34 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Its been warm and that is forecast to continue. Unless it cools off and we do not have a normal melt then I would not be freaking on skeeters just yet. Without a boatload of standing water in late Spring we should be OK.

Usually it is about July 10 when a need for an ice axe disappears from Paintbrush. Early July is awesome for the Southern approaches of the glorious Gros Ventre Range.


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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 12 2014, 11:16 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Travis,
While browsing cloudpeak.webs.com I found some dead links, or at least they don't go to the referred site.  You might be aware of them and haven't had time to address them or perhaps I should have kept following the links. Two that I looked at are within topics on the Maps page.

The link to  Forest Service Visitors Map under Area of Map Coverage goes to ImageShack and states that the image has been removed.

The link to Google Earth Page under Google Earth View goes to Multiply.com. and invites me to their new shopping sites in the Philippines and Indonesia.  I looked no further.

Thank you for creating this thorough, entertaining and educational web site.  The time you put into creating and maintaining the site must be staggering.  I appreciate it.
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 12 2014, 2:16 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(llamapacker @ Apr. 12 2014, 9:16 am)
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Travis,
While browsing cloudpeak.webs.com I found some dead links, or at least they don't go to the referred site.  You might be aware of them and haven't had time to address them or perhaps I should have kept following the links. Two that I looked at are within topics on the Maps page.

The link to  Forest Service Visitors Map under Area of Map Coverage goes to ImageShack and states that the image has been removed.

The link to Google Earth Page under Google Earth View goes to Multiply.com. and invites me to their new shopping sites in the Philippines and Indonesia.  I looked no further.

Thank you for creating this thorough, entertaining and educational web site.  The time you put into creating and maintaining the site must be staggering.  I appreciate it.

Thanks. I think I've repaired a few of those links. If not, you can access the pages from the tabs at the top of the page. The Forest Service map was lost by ImageShack, and I haven't found a new place to upload it where the full size will be displayed.

I need to spend a lot of time on that site. It was hosted by Multiply before Multiply sold out to a foreign outfit. I have hundreds more pages and photos to upload, but the work is daunting. And I have to convert all pages from older HTML to the newer CSS language for my new hosting site.  I can do that, but it takes time that I don't seem to have these days.

Thanks for the reminder.


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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 12 2014, 4:40 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(llamapacker @ Apr. 12 2014, 9:16 am)
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. . . The link to  Forest Service Visitors Map under Area of Map Coverage goes to ImageShack and states that the image has been removed.

Here is the new Forest Service Visitors Map link.


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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 12 2014, 9:28 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Keep up the outstanding work.
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 22 2014, 5:34 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(TravisNWood @ Apr. 09 2014, 9:22 pm)
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For the Bighorn Mountains, the best known loop trail is the Solitude Loop Trail 038. But it is 53 miles long plus any mileage there and back on a spur trail from the trailhead.

If you insist on a loop trail, you are not going to get into the highest elevations of the Bighorns. You will be above timberline on occasion — depending upon your choice. But getting up to the higher peaks is a different project than what you describe.

I'm taking one or both sons on a long trip this summer and had planned to head back to the Winds for a couple loops. Maybe we could split the time with the Bighorns.

I much prefer loops so we don't have shuttle cost but also much prefer being above treeline a lot, which you imply isn't very easy with a loop. Also like creeks/ lakes for sons to play in (we don't fish) or other cool things to see. I don't mind off-trail travel if there is nothing more than easy class 2 since I'll have my youngest with me for sure. There don't appear to be any trails going into the heart of the wilderness which I assume is where it would be more like the Winds.

What type of compromise could be reached using the southern THs (how rough are the roads for Honda Civic?) or is the Solitude Loop Trail our best bet?
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 22 2014, 5:53 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Three @ Apr. 08 2014, 9:28 pm)
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My Alaska trip may not work this summer so I'm looking for a 4-5 day loop trip in WY.   Did a portion of the Teton Crest last summer.

Any thoughts, opinions or recommendations on a loop in in the Wind River Range or Bighorn Mts?

Also open to other suggestions in WY.

Timeframe would be late July.

Thanks.

For the OP, a quick loop in the Winds was Elkhart Park -> Pine Creek Canyon Trail (no longer officially maintained) -> Highline Trail -> in and out of Titcomb Basin -> Seneca Lake Trail -> Pole Creek Trail -> Elkhart Park

You could easily add mileage if you want.
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 26 2014, 12:44 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(TopShot @ Post #16)
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I much prefer loops so we don't have shuttle cost but also much prefer being above treeline a lot, which you imply isn't very easy with a loop.

I honestly don't share people's aversion to retracing their steps occasionally. But I was born and raised here and have rarely had it another way. The choices are not simply loop or shuttle. The other choice is retrace your route once in a while. No shuttle necessary.

Here's a map of Forest Cover in Cloud Peak Wilderness. The established trail system is indicated by dashed red lines. Roughly the same area is shown with this link to Acme Mapper in the satellite tab.

On the first map, you can see that trails do occasionally venture above treeline in the Bighorns. That includes the Solitude Loop Trail. But the highest elevations tend to be rough jagged peaks bounded by scree slopes. It wouldn't make much sense to build a thru trail crossing such areas. If you want to access those peaks, you use the trail system to get close and then you go off-trail to do the climb. In that respect, most of the Wind River Range is similar.


(TopShot @ Post #16)
QUOTE
(I) Also like creeks/ lakes for sons to play in (we don't fish) or other cool things to see. I don't mind off-trail travel if there is nothing more than easy class 2 since I'll have my youngest with me for sure. There don't appear to be any trails going into the heart of the wilderness which I assume is where it would be more like the Winds.

With or without the sons, that's seems to be the formula many, if not most, visitors to the Bighorns or the Wind Rivers subscribe to. They want easy routes to alpine lakes. Additionally, you want all that to be on a loop trail (or loop route, I presume) that goes into the "heart of the wilderness."

Seriously forgive my cynicism here, but no one designed the divides of the Laramide ranges in the Rockies to be so accommodating. Without a doubt, the composite wildernesses of the Winds are larger than Cloud Peak Wilderness. So maybe the Winds have a bigger "heart." But the "heart of the wilderness" is often rather "barren" jagged, glaciated headwalls whose remnants are scree fields and slopes surrounding alpine tarns far below with no native fish population. That's not exactly country prime for easy class-2 walk-ups.

You can walk right to the top of Cloud Peak at 13,175 feet and rarely put a hand down to steady yourself. But you'll cross a "knife blade ridge" and if you venture a bit too far south from the common route you'll be struggling to climb boulder after boulder from the size of a VW Bug to that of a small cabin over and over again until you are about exhausted. And then when you get ready to descend, you'll return on virtually the same route (minus the gigantic boulders, hopefully) to descend a couple thousand feet over a couple miles.

And despite being the highest peak in the wilderness, it's also one of the easiest walk ups. The "heart of the wilderness" is not designed to be an easy walk-up on a loop route.


(TopShot @ Post #16)
QUOTE
What type of compromise could be reached using the southern THs (how rough are the roads for Honda Civic?) or is the Solitude Loop Trail our best bet?

You haven't given me enough information to answer those questions. Many of the southern trailheads can be accessed with a Honda Civic. Some would not be a good choice.


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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 26 2014, 11:21 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Travis,
Sorry I wasn't clear enough. I meant a rough loop with side trips as necessary to reach the cool stuff. I'm not averse to retracing a route a bit. Just don't want to hike for a few days and then turn right back around.

I asked for easy class 2 because it would be hard class 2 and maybe even 3 for my 7 year old. Let's say for example we decide to do Cloud Peak. Is the knife ridge route well-marked and suitable for him (he's OK with hiking a good distance and basic scrambling on smaller rocks)?

If not, can you suggest a nice route that sees some interesting "boy stuff" and doesn't exceed 10 miles/day (say 3-5 days)?

He said he wanted "real" mountains this year. :) He's only been in the Appalachians so far.

Thank you for your wisdom.
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 27 2014, 1:48 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

QUOTE
Is the knife ridge route well-marked and suitable for him (he's OK with hiking a good distance and basic scrambling on smaller rocks)?


As long as you keep going up you'll run right into the "knife edge", which is actually about 10' wide. It's been a while since I've been up there but if memory serves the really big rocks aren't a problem until you get maybe 3/4 of the way up.  I don't know your 7 year old but I suspect you'll need to give him a hand if you get that far.
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 27 2014, 2:21 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Yeah, the "knife edge" is tough to miss, and it's a blunt knife. Here is a photo looking back at it after crossing. Here is the SummitPost page for Cloud Peak. And I know Dorfinator has a few photos of his own.

But setting that aside for now, as I understand it, you are taking a 7-year-old from an elevation of around 1000 feet in Indiana, driving Interstate 90 to the Big Horn Mountains in two days, camping at from 7500 to 9000 feet elevation on your first night in the mountains, base camping at 10,000 feet before going up Cloud Peak, getting up early to do the peak at over 13,000 feet, base camping again at 10,000 feet, and then spending a couple more days completing a loop back to your trailhead — during which time you are not likely to descend below 9000 feet again until you are ready to leave the mountains.

Believe it or not, I've gotten questions like this for years, and I'd rather just make maps and let other people make decisions on planning trips like that. I don't doubt that some 7-year-olds could do that. I also suspect quite a few might have some problems with it — problems their parents might not quite anticipate. What do you think?


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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 27 2014, 5:53 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

some photos  for a kid friendly Bighorn trip.  It's an out and back from West Tensleep but lots of lakes and streams for boys to explore---including the aforementioned Cloud Peak
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 27 2014, 9:11 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Great posts Travis. Hope you take 'em to heart topshot. I'm not sure what you're planning in the Winds but whatever you and yours end up doing I hope everyone has an awesome time. If you shorter distances and want to walk above treeline long distances there's some great off trail but generally benign Continental Divide Ridge Walking in the Southern Absaroka.

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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 27 2014, 10:13 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(TravisNWood @ Apr. 27 2014, 2:21 pm)
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Yeah, the "knife edge" is tough to miss, and it's a blunt knife. Here is a photo looking back at it after crossing.

That looks pretty simple. I asked about being well-marked because of your comment that if you missed the common route you'd have to deal with large boulders which I know he couldn't do. I don't even see where they are in that pic.

Anyway, yes, I don't know how he will react to elevation yet. I know I don't have any trouble at all. I know his older brother seems to handle at least 10K well (we did last 60 miles of JMT into Yosemite for his first major backpack last summer and he wasn't in the best shape). However it affects everyone different so if he seems to be struggling with whatever route we decide on we'll just turn around and find something to do lower. He may not even care about reaching a peak. Just looking for ideas.

As for the Winds, we may do the same route I had done before and suggested above to the OP. The only hard part is the climb out of Pine Creek Canyon.
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(topshot @ Apr. 27 2014, 8:13 pm)
QUOTE
That looks pretty simple. I asked about being well-marked because of your comment that if you missed the common route you'd have to deal with large boulders which I know he couldn't do. I don't even see where they are in that pic.

The large boulders are not in the photo. That's the knife edge. My photos of the large boulders are on a corrupted CD, with a lot of other photos of that area. Maybe someday, I'll figure out how to retrieve them. But I'm not hopeful.

The knife edge is simple, seen through adult eyes comfortably ensconced at his home computer. I suspect it looks a bit different through the eyes of a 7-year-old who may not have slept well, was gotten up early that morning, and is a bit disoriented from a significant elevation change. Nonetheless, young boy scouts do the trip every summer, I'm sure. Like you say, we don't all respond to elevation change the same way.

In general, I don't expect off-trail routes to be "well-marked." Some are — unofficially, of course. But then some are well-marked and marked completely wrong — in my estimation. An example is when someone climbs a peak (thinking they know where they are going) and begins piling a couple rocks here and there before finding themselves at a dead end.

So there, where their hoped-for-route reaches a dead-end, they quit piling rocks. Of course, after finding a way out or back, they don't return the same way to topple the faulty route they left behind. In effect, they did an admirable job of leading other hikers to the same dead-end route, and nothing more. Moral of the story is that it makes no sense to follow a misguided duck off-trail.

And I have seen that problem on the ascent to Cloud Peak. In late summer, you may see several attempts to mark a route and you end up with braided routes because you can't distinguish which rocks go with which routes. Not everyone who sets a couple rocks on top each other knows what he is doing.

On the Wind River Indian Reservation (WRIR), I've found a well-marked, off-trail route, but the cairns were completely unnecessary because you couldn't find the cairns unless you knew where the route was well in advance. But if you knew where to find the route, it became obvious without the cairns.

I'd rather see people use GPS than pile rocks where they are not needed, not reliable, or just an eye-sore. Some are valuable. Some are a misleading problem.


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(TravisNWood @ Apr. 28 2014, 8:52 am)
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Not everyone who sets a couple rocks on top each other knows what he is doing.

Been there done that at the crux of the route heading to a basin in Maroon Bells. Ended up just having to figure out a route on my own instead of trying to follow any cairns. Was kind of the same way coming back down.

I'm solely a map and compass guy though I suppose if my phone could get signal I could use it for GPS in a pinch. Haven't needed it yet but also haven't been socked in by clouds or snow.

Instead of route suggestions, would you recommend particular sites that may be interesting to see (such as Cloud Peak) or camp at coming from a southern TH and I'll see what type of route I could put together.

Which southern THs should I avoid? I've had to drive some very bumpy and washboarded gravel roads before in the Civic to reach THs, but would prefer not to as I have over 200K on it now (and just put in a new tranny).
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 28 2014, 1:31 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(topshot @ Apr. 28 2014, 10:45 am)
QUOTE
. . . Instead of route suggestions, would you recommend particular sites that may be interesting to see (such as Cloud Peak) or camp at coming from a southern TH and I'll see what type of route I could put together.

Which southern THs should I avoid? I've had to drive some very bumpy and washboarded gravel roads before in the Civic to reach THs, but would prefer not to as I have over 200K on it now (and just put in a new tranny).

I rely on map and compass also.

Hunter TH and Circle Park TH are both on fairly good roads, FS 19 and 20 respectively, from highway 16 on the southeast of the wilderness. (FS = Forest Road.)

The last time I was over the road to West Tensleep Lake (FS 27) SW area, it was washboarded in places, but that can change year-to-year.

One loop you might do, that could still be a bit strenuous, would be Hunter TH going NW to Elk Lake to camp, next day south to Seven Brothers Lakes to camp, 3rd day back east to Hunter TH. Both Elk Lake and Seven Brothers Lakes have good views, with Seven brothers being my preference. Elevations at the lakes are about 9860 feet and 9590 feet respectively. Both locations are near timberline but not above it.

I would avoid going past Hunter TH on the trail road (399?). High clearance vehicles can get a little deeper, but I would not recommend it for your Civic.

Near the turnoff to Hunter TH is  trail road 391, and if you can get up the slight hill from highway 16 okay, you could probably drive up that way a half mile or so to park your car away from the highway. It's not a marked trailhead, but practically as good as one — without any outhouse nearby, by the way.

Back to the west side, from FS 27 to West Tensleep Lake is another long dirt road to Battle Park Trailhead. I'd avoid that also. It would be better to stay on FS 27 to West Tensleep.


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Webpages — Cloud Peak Wilderness Maps — Rocky Mountain Wildlife
Photos — Bighorn Mountains — Wyoming Steppes
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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 29 2014, 10:39 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Some really great in-depth information here.  I can only add a few observations and some news. If you are inclined to the Bighorns, by all means invest in Trails Illustrated Map #720, Cloud Peak Wilderness, WY.

The West Ten Sleep Corridor in the Bighorn NF, with TR 063, gives access to the summits of Cloud Peak and Bomber Mountain, but is problematic with some visitors with the 2013 Special Order that requires all human solid waste has to be packed out. This is along the entire West Ten Sleep Creek drainage, in and out of the Cloud Peak Wilderness. Too many years of too many visitors in the high alpine made it a health issue.
IMHO Hunter TH is for horse packers, and you have three miles of treading though dirt roads with vehicles, exhaust, and dust if you go toward Clear Creek and Trail Park. If you choose Hunter, go south and west toward Buffalo Park to Seven Brothers; sorta reverse loop of what Travis suggested.

My favorite suggestion
The most direct TH to wilderness is found in the NW via US 14 and then south and east on FSR 17 to either the Edelman or Paint Rock Trail heads. Edelman gives you access via Medicine Lodge Creek to Emerald Lake and Edelman Pass. Paint Rock TH to North Paint Rock Creek and the farthest point in the Cloud Peak Wilderness; Cliff Lake and its daughters. The two trailheads can be looped but it will require crossing three passes. I have done it in three days but enjoyed taking a companion and doing it in five much better. This area has considerable travel above timberline but fewer significant summits. I do rate it's wilderness values as being higher.
Crossing the North Fork Paint Rock can be tough before the second week of July, and right now the Bighorn Mountains are at 170% of normal and it is snowing tonight (April 29th)
FSR 17 all the way to the Paint Rock TH is 27 miles of FS system gravel road, with 6 miles across private lands that can be rough, but I did it in a Corolla many times. If I were to hike the area this summer, I would take my 08 Focus and leave the Rover at home.

Fuller Disclosure
I live in the area (Sheridan-Buffalo)


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PostIcon Posted on: Apr. 29 2014, 10:57 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Wind's

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Want to see The Wind River Range in widescreen 1080p ?
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PostIcon Posted on: May 13 2014, 11:02 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE

OP here.  Been off of Backpacker for awhile - wedding in the family and really busy at work.

Still a toss up for me between Wind River Range, Big Horn Mts., and Absaroka.  Am also considering a short trip to the Snowy Range near Medicine Bow Peak.

Appreciate all the suggestions for routes...and DC's invitation to the Continental Divide Communist Association  :D
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