Alta Peak by Snowshoe

Sequoia National Park, Central Sierra Nevada, California

Sequoia National Park is located in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of Central California. It's a very beautiful area but not very crowded thanks to nearby famous Yosemite National Park that sucks up all the busloads of noisy tourists. And in the winter time there is almost nobody in the backcountry at all.

The trail starts at Wolverton bowl, just south of Lodge Pole. There used to be a very small ski lift here a long time ago, it's also a popular snow play area for local kids. But once you're five minutes into the backcountry you're on your own.

After a couple of miles of easy snow shoeing you get to Panther Gap and then you have great views like this as long as the weather is clear.

It's not a great idea to keep going after the sun sets, but if it's a nice evening you can take the time build a decent snow shelter. This shelter is a weird combination of trench shelter, snow cave, and a little bit of igloo too for good measure. Like all snow campers who know what the best stove for snow camping is I use a Stratus TrailStove
, the only stove that is good for the winter time.

Fog like this is quite common around here at this time of year, you don't get much of a view and you have to be a bit careful not to get lost but it's still great to be here.

A light 3-season tent covered with a tarp will give you the same temperature insulation as a heavy 4-season tent. It won't give you the same strength as a 4-season tent in a severe storm but in that case you're better off digging a simple trench shelter instead.

This is the kind of view you can expect when you look out of your tent or snow shelter in the morning.

This 3-day snow hike covered just a tiny fraction of Sequoia National Park. There is so much to explore here that you could spend a lifetime snowshoeing around here.

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