email a friend iconprinter friendly iconBest New Trips for 2010
Page [ 15 ] of 26
Photograph courtesy of Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides
Thru-Hike the Sierra

“What makes the Sierra High Route so unique,” says Ian Elman, owner of Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides, “is that it’s not a trail, it’s a concept.” That concept—invented in the 1970s by a guy named Steve Roper, who wrote The Sierra High Route: Traversing Timberline Country—is to trace the highest points across the Sierra while staying above tree line and away from other hikers. The thing is, it’s exceedingly difficult to execute this concept on your own: Only a handful of people complete it each year. Lucky for you, Andrew Skurka will lead the inaugural Sierra High Route outfitted crossing for Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides in 2010. The trekker extraordinaire (and our 2008 Adventurer of the Year) completed the hike in just eight days last year. Starting in Kings Canyon National Park, you’ll hoof it 195 miles north, passing through the John Muir Wilderness, the Ansel Adams Wilderness, and Yosemite National Park. You’ll tackle 12,100-foot Mather Pass and bushwhack through Headwaters country, where glaciers still feed the mighty San Joaquin River. Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides has space for just six hikers, and extensive backpacking experience is required. “This is an old-fashioned adventure travel trip,” says Elman, referring to the fact that route-finding can be hit-or-miss. “We’ll try to make it run smoothly, but it’ll be really challenging.”

Outfitter: Southern Yosemite Mountain Guides;
Price: $6,495 ($$)
Length: 26 days
Departs: August

Page [ 15 ] of 26