Quick 4 day Winds trip

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TeamJenkins17

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May 26, 2019
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It looks like we’ll have about 4 extra days after our Teton Wilderness Trip and the wife really wants to see a lot more of the Winds. I was thinking of doing a loop out of Elkhart Park to Titcomb basin through Knapsack Col, down to Peak Lake, over Shannon Pass and down to Lost Lake and back out to Elkhart.

Anyone have any suggestions or would this be pretty good? I know Titcomb will most likely be crowded, but my thought was most everything after Knapsack would be pretty quiet? This will be a Wednesday through Saturday trip.
 

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b.stark

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Kind of long days on that hike but it's a classic Winds lollipop route. I have yet to do Knapsak Col myself, would like to someday though. Expect Island Lake to be crowded. There's getting to be a lot of well worn campsites around it. The trail between Seneca Lake and Elkhart Park is a bit of a superhighway.
 

OldBill

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Not sure when this trip is. If near, you might want to check with GOS in Pinedale regarding Knapsack.

Yes, even in September I've noticed more folks on that path. Usually I leave it at Eklund L but took my nephew back to Titcomb last Sept. Trying to find a cleaner site with less use was not easy. Plenty of TP markers... I'm leading a group in there next year and will need to look around for something more LNT.
 

TeamJenkins17

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I’m expecting to be going over Knapsack around August 2nd, I’ve been watching the snow reports closely and hoping for some serious melting which looks to be happening. I’ll absolutely stop in the GOS to see how things are for sure.
 

Pianomover

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Kind of long days on that hike but it's a classic Winds lollipop route. I have yet to do Knapsak Col myself, would like to someday though. Expect Island Lake to be crowded. There's getting to be a lot of well worn campsites around it. The trail between Seneca Lake and Elkhart Park is a bit of a superhighway.
Would you expect the same type of crowds after Labor Day? I’m planning a trip the week after and having never been out of CA in 40 plus years of backpacking I’m feeling that maybe crowded might be relative.
 

b.stark

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Would you expect the same type of crowds after Labor Day? I’m planning a trip the week after and having never been out of CA in 40 plus years of backpacking I’m feeling that maybe crowded might be relative.
If California crowds are your standard, might not be so bad. For the winds, though, island lake and the cirque are crowded, and I'd expect them to be so about any time of year. With the late start to the backpacking season there this year id expect some people to move their trips later in the season. I've been to island lake once around labor day and it was still crowded then.
 

Hiker Seth

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If you aren't married to Island Lake/Titcomb you may want to look at Cook Lakes and Wall Lake. Less crowds, great fishing, and stellar scenery on my trip last year. Cook Lakes are reachable in a day.
 

TeamJenkins17

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If you aren't married to Island Lake/Titcomb you may want to look at Cook Lakes and Wall Lake. Less crowds, great fishing, and stellar scenery on my trip last year. Cook Lakes are reachable in a day.
Thanks for that suggestion, I’ve actually looked at that area as well and you definitely have a good point about take the path that’s less crowded
 

OldBill

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It has been getting more crowded even after Labor Day. But after that week it thins out a lot. I was at Island/Titcomb late last September and saw only a few folks. It's a gamble with the weather and there is less daylight to work with.

I'm one of the folks that delayed the trip this year partially due to the snow. I was looking forward to an early Labor Day (possibly warmer weather) but may be crossing the divide and have already had enough of mosquitoes here in the NE.

Cook Lakes and Wall Lake are amazing. Not sure it can compete with the grandiose scenery in Titcomb, but is more relaxing if one wants solitude. If Knapsack is out, you might consider a loop around Cook and Wall, easy off trail to Island, visit Titcomb and back out via the hiker highway.
 

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TeamJenkins17

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It has been getting more crowded even after Labor Day. But after that week it thins out a lot. I was at Island/Titcomb late last September and saw only a few folks. It's a gamble with the weather and there is less daylight to work with.

I'm one of the folks that delayed the trip this year partially due to the snow. I was looking forward to an early Labor Day (possibly warmer weather) but may be crossing the divide and have already had enough of mosquitoes here in the NE.

Cook Lakes and Wall Lake are amazing. Not sure it can compete with the grandiose scenery in Titcomb, but is more relaxing if one wants solitude. If Knapsack is out, you might consider a loop around Cook and Wall, easy off trail to Island, visit Titcomb and back out via the hiker highway.
Excellent, thank you. I’ve been wanting to do Knapsack for a while now, but if there’s still too much snow I’ll definitely go and see Cook lakes and Wall lake
 

Bob

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Titcomb etc are all overrated.. many places as nice or nicer without the people. Look at the lesser known trailheads... After one nitecib on any of them you're in great country
 

Pianomover

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Titcomb etc are all overrated.. many places as nice or nicer without the people. Look at the lesser known trailheads... After one nitecib on any of them you're in great country
I lived in San Francisco for years and every time someone visited for the first time they inevitably wanted to go to The Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Wharf etc. which we would do it was the second or third time around that I could take them to the as nice or nicer places. I feel somewhat the same about my first trip to the winds.
 

TeamJenkins17

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Titcomb etc are all overrated.. many places as nice or nicer without the people. Look at the lesser known trailheads... After one nitecib on any of them you're in great country
Amen to that Bob, where would you suggest as far as a really great 4 day trip? The wife and I both definitely enjoy more solitude while in the backcountry.
 

fossana

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For the 2017 eclipse we planned a climbing trip out of Big Sandy. Not surprisingly, the trailhead was more packed than I had ever seen it, and we opted out of heading to the Cirque of the Towers and instead did a neighboring climb, then went into Deep Lake the next day. The trail from Big Sandy to Jackass Pass was busy (by Winds standards), but there was only one other party of two in Deep Lake. Granted it's not a high mileage outing, but if you want a beautiful and quiet place I would recommend it. Since the approach is shared with the Cirque you could have Deep Lake as a plan B if it the other areas are too busy for your liking.
 

TeamJenkins17

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For the 2017 eclipse we planned a climbing trip out of Big Sandy. Not surprisingly, the trailhead was more packed than I had ever seen it, and we opted out of heading to the Cirque of the Towers and instead did a neighboring climb, then went into Deep Lake the next day. The trail from Big Sandy to Jackass Pass was busy (by Winds standards), but there was only one other party of two in Deep Lake. Granted it's not a high mileage outing, but if you want a beautiful and quiet place I would recommend it. Since the approach is shared with the Cirque you could have Deep Lake as a plan B if it the other areas are too busy for your liking.
Awesome, thanks a ton for the info. That’s definitely the huge plus to a Winds Trip is the countless options.
 

OldBill

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Titcomb etc are all overrated.. many places as nice or nicer without the people. Look at the lesser known trailheads... After one nitecib on any of them you're in great country
I already feel guilty about leading my local hiking group into Titcomb and the Cirque next year. But, for first timers, those are the sites nearly all want to see. At least I'll do the back route via Texas Pass. Really no options other than the highway from Elkhart for Titcomb in the 3-4 days we have allotted for that. (Could possibly do the Cook L route or via Lester Pass, but it adds a day.) I also have a day hike to the Clear Ck Natural Bridge. Another high use TH. Just compromise with time and different folks. A 4 day and 3 day backpack with an acclimation dayhike and an extra weather day with added travel days to Jackson for flights seemed good.

I introduced my nephew to the Winds a few years ago with acclimating dayhikes to Lake Louise and the Nat Bridge, then did a 4 day journey over Fall Ck Pass to the Golden Lakes. He's totally hooked (though he didn't want to go back over that pass!) Had to show him Titcomb last year (along with Lower Deep Creek Lake, Yellowstone and GTNP). This year will be the Cirque and some of Bear Basin (I want to fish Faler). Some day I hope to make it to Goat Flat and Horse Ridge areas and maybe finally get to Flying Monkey.

Maybe we need a new thread with 3-5 day non-Cirque/Titcomb destinations in the Winds, accompanied with a couple of photos.
IMG_0078_Large.JPG
 
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Pianomover

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I already feel guilty about leading my local hiking group into Titcomb and the Cirque next year. But, for first timers, those are the sites nearly all want to see. At least I'll do the back route via Texas Pass. Really no options other than the highway from Elkhart for Titcomb in the 3-4 days we have allotted for that. (Could possibly do the Cook L route or via Lester Pass, but it adds a day.) I also have a day hike to the Clear Ck Natural Bridge. Another high use TH. Just compromise with time and different folks. A 4 day and 3 day backpack with an acclimation dayhike and an extra weather day with added travel days to Jackson for flights seemed good.

I introduced my nephew to the Winds a few years ago with acclimating dayhikes to Lake Louise and the Nat Bridge, then did a 4 day journey over Fall Ck Pass to the Golden Lakes. He's totally hooked (though he didn't want to go back over that pass!) Had to show him Titcomb last year (along with Lower Deep Creek Lake, Yellowstone and GTNP). This year will be the Cirque and some of Bear Basin (I want to fish Faler). Some day I hope to make it to Goat Flat and Horse Ridge areas and maybe finally get to Flying Monkey.

Maybe we need a new thread with 3-5 day non-Cirque/Titcomb destinations in the Winds, accompanied with a couple of photos.
View attachment 79690
Maybe we need a new thread with 3-5 day non-Cirque/Titcomb destinations in the Winds, accompanied with a couple of photos. I would love that
 

Bob

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I already feel guilty about leading my local hiking group into Titcomb and the Cirque next year. But, for first timers, those are the sites nearly all want to see. At least I'll do the back route via Texas Pass. Really no options other than the highway from Elkhart for Titcomb in the 3-4 days we have allotted for that. (Could possibly do the Cook L route or via Lester Pass, but it adds a day.) I also have a day hike to the Clear Ck Natural Bridge. Another high use TH. Just compromise with time and different folks. A 4 day and 3 day backpack with an acclimation dayhike and an extra weather day with added travel days to Jackson for flights seemed good.

I introduced my nephew to the Winds a few years ago with acclimating dayhikes to Lake Louise and the Nat Bridge, then did a 4 day journey over Fall Ck Pass to the Golden Lakes. He's totally hooked (though he didn't want to go back over that pass!) Had to show him Titcomb last year (along with Lower Deep Creek Lake, Yellowstone and GTNP). This year will be the Cirque and some of Bear Basin (I want to fish Faler). Some day I hope to make it to Goat Flat and Horse Ridge areas and maybe finally get to Flying Monkey.

Maybe we need a new thread with 3-5 day non-Cirque/Titcomb destinations in the Winds, accompanied with a couple of photos.
View attachment 79690
Flying monkey has no Golden's. .wink, wink
 

Bob

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Amen to that Bob, where would you suggest as far as a really great 4 day trip? The wife and I both definitely enjoy more solitude while in the backcountry.
East Fork, Bonneville, Shelia, Noel, Middlefork, Halls, Europe lk area.....Scab creek or Boulder creek TH. Ross lks, Bomber lk, Mile high lk loop from Torrey TH. Osborn mtn to Faler to Daphne to bear lk area out of Green River TH. Lost eagle pk, Golden lk, Baker lk area out of Green river lk TH.

Be warned the stuff on the north end borders extreme except for the Ross lk Bomber lk loop. And your mileage could be different than mine. Great fishing in Ross lks. Halls, Europe, unamed lks along the way.

Bomber, Milehigh, Ross loop.....some route finding around Ross on the west side...everything else is straight forward. I think I last did it in 4 days with a late start from Torrey. Or Europe halls area. East fork Shelia some off trail, not bad, great scenery all thru Middle fork lk, good loop. Just be aware of your capabilities. Pm me I can talk more...
 

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