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So I'm doing the Sierra High Route...
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Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Transportation. on 07/11/2013 12:52:50 MDT Print View

I am starting in Road's End and probably stopping in Tuolumne Meadows. I'm having a hard time figuring out transportation. Is it possible to take public transportation back to my car in Road's End? I don't have a problem with hitchhiking but would prefer to avoid it if possible.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Transportation. on 07/11/2013 12:58:40 MDT Print View

"Is it possible to take public transportation back to my car in Road's End?"

Probably not.

--B.G.--

Andrew F
(andrew.f) - F - M

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Transportation on 07/11/2013 13:00:05 MDT Print View

Nope, it is difficult to get back to Road's End unless you hitchhike or hire someone on Craigslist. Lots of people hike in over Kearsarge Pass to start the route because you can take the Eastern Sierra Transit bus from Lee Vining back to Independence and then catch a ride to Onion Valley. Maybe bribe one of your friends to drop you off & pick you up...

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Re: Transportation. on 07/11/2013 13:01:09 MDT Print View

Yeah, I just realized that they don't have any shuttles going to Road's end.
How difficult/easy is to hitchhike through national parks as a backpacker?

Andrew F
(andrew.f) - F - M

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Transportation on 07/11/2013 13:04:03 MDT Print View

I don't have any personal experience hitchhiking out here so I can't comment, but as far as trailheads go, Road's End doesn't get a lot of traffic and is a long way from anywhere.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: Transportation. on 07/11/2013 13:08:38 MDT Print View

I have hitched rides in Sequoia, Kings Canyon, and Yosemite.

It helps if you look halfway clean, and I know how difficult that can be. It helps if you have a small pack that will be easy to throw into a vehicle.

It helps a lot if you have a small sign (RIDE?). If you want, use a black marker on the blank back of a topo map. If somebody does stop and roll down a window, you can tell them exactly where you are trying to go.

If helps if you are standing upright by the edge of a parking lot which gives the driver plenty of warning and space to stop. If you are collapsed on the ground, they think you may be a problem, so they keep driving.

Hitching a ride is kind of unpredictable. I've waited for hours and hours on a hot day before, and that was no fun. I've also gotten a ride within the hour. Prepare for the worse.

--B.G.--

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Transportation on 07/11/2013 13:09:49 MDT Print View

"Road's End doesn't get a lot of traffic and is a long way from anywhere."

Andrew, isn't it great?

--B.G.--

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Kearsage on 07/11/2013 13:29:37 MDT Print View

Kearsage pass sounds like my best bet. Thanks for the info Andrew. I've never been to the east side of the Sierras so this is all new and frustrating to me.

peter vacco
(fluff@inreach.com) - M

Locale: no. california
Re: Transportation. hitchhiking on 07/11/2013 14:15:58 MDT Print View

look clean.
NO sunglasses.
perferrably, no hat, or tilted up so they can see your face if you must wear one.
sign .. YES! and NOT on brown cardboard.
no dark brown or black pants.
wear the nicer of your shirts.
be seen with a book in your hand.
be at a place a sane person could safely pull over.
the more populated and seemingly safe the spot is.. the better.
THANK the driver for stopping. then ... ask for a ride. then .. open the car door.

i prefer the sign over the thumb.
make the letters BIG.

as advised, have all your kit squared away. ONE bag, and maybe a hat. that is it. or else you'll lose stuff it the car.
in Canada, carry them, and offer the driver a smoke, even if you don't. (they all do)

cheers,
v.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Meeting up. on 07/11/2013 21:25:22 MDT Print View

So here is the plan: My main hiking partner is in Ohio until August 7th and if he can't get a ride, I think my plan will be to hike over paiute pass/hitchhike into bishop, get back to my car at onion valley, drive all the way to san ramon, and pick him up. He would pay for the gas of course. That would give me a chance to take a break, resupply, and do a run down on our gear. He is a really good friend with a similar hiking style and he really wants to go, so it's worth the hassle for me.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Meeting up. on 07/13/2013 15:09:51 MDT Print View

Justin,

Breaking up the trip to go back home would be a bummer for me. It would interrupt the flow of a great hike.

Amy Lauterbach
(drongobird) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Meeting up. on 07/15/2013 14:23:21 MDT Print View

hike over paiute pass/hitchhike into bishop, get back to my car at onion valley, drive all the way to san ramon, and pick him up

Unless you really like driving that sounds like a big disruption to your trip.
Your friend could take BART to San Francisco.
Catch the Megabus express bus to Reno (arrives in Reno at 12:40 PM).
Then the ESTA bus from Reno to Bishop (departs Reno at 1:30 PM). You can meet him in Bishop and do your reorganizing and resupply there.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Update. on 07/25/2013 16:18:10 MDT Print View

Things have come up and I am not able to hike the entire route over 20 days. Instead I am leaving with my hiking partner on the 8th and we need to be back on the 19th. I'm thinking the plan will be from Kearsage pass and eventually exiting out of piute pass.
If we have extra time we will hike north of pitute pass and loop around to leave.

I'm bummed out that I'm not doing the whole thing, but with that goal gone we can do this trip how we want with plenty of side exploration and we won't need to worry about ressuply. It's going to be about 70-80 miles of the route.

This is going to mean hitchhiking. I wish there was another way but we only have one car. I've considered hiring a shuttle but meeting someone at a specific time without a way to communicate is not practical for us and the cost is an issue.

How much time should we give ourselves to hitch out of piute pass to bishop, take the shuttle to independence, and hitch back to onion valley?
Are there going to be plenty of other backpackers willing to give a fellow hiker a ride or do these roads get very little traffic?

Edited by justin_baker on 07/25/2013 16:19:11 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Update. on 07/25/2013 16:22:15 MDT Print View

Leave car, have shuttle take you to other end, hike back to car, then you don't have to worry about meeting shuttle at specific time.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Update. on 07/25/2013 16:24:00 MDT Print View

Hiking east out of Piute Pass, you arrive at North Lake. There are a few fishermen in pickup trucks on that road, but you have to understand the hours that they would be leaving. If you hike from North Lake down to the main Lake Sabrina Road, there is a lot more traffic of fishermen and boaters. However, there is more traffic early in the day coming up to the lake, and more traffic late in the day going down.

--B.G.--

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Re: Update. on 07/25/2013 16:25:35 MDT Print View

Jerry, the highway follows the entire route to the east, and there is a shuttle that goes along that highway, but the roads leading to the trailheads at my starting point and ending point have no shuttles leading to them (to my knowledge).

Andrew F
(andrew.f) - F - M

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Update. on 07/25/2013 16:31:12 MDT Print View

North Lake/Lake Sabrina and Onion Valley are pretty popular trailheads. There should be lots of people there in August. I don't have any experience hitching out there, but the PCT folks seem to manage just fine. I think you'll be OK.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: Update. on 07/25/2013 16:33:23 MDT Print View

The Eastern Sierra Shuttle operates two different ways. One is for standard town-to-town service on a fixed schedule. The other way is more like a taxi, and it gets you from the remote trailhead to the nearest town. Don't expect it to be instant.

--B.G.--