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ChrisF

4-5 day loop thru hike in August somewhere in the US?

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ChrisF

Question for you all: any suggestions for a 4-5 day loop thru hike in August somewear in the US? Currently thinking about doing the Maroon Bells Capitol Creek Circuit near Aspen. Looking for something moderately difficult, amazing scenery, not overwhelmed with people and not requiring a ton of outdoor experience. 

For a little more background: I’ve done two short thru hikes: 5 days on AT and the 3 day Lost Coast Trail. I plan to do at least one short thru hike every year. Not comfortable in heavy bear areas and my cousin who is joining prefers a lower level of mosquitos.

We did the LCT last year and had a blast. Want to keep doing more so we can keep learning and experiencing some amazing trails. 

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balzaccom

There are a ton of routes in the Sierra that would work for this. And if you stay off the John Muir Trail you won't see many people or bears.  Emigrant Wilderness, Yosemite, SEKI, or the Ansel Adam Wilderness...pretty great hiking there.  We have lots of routes and trip reports on our website;  backpackthesierra.com

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ghsmith76

I would highly recommend the Timberline Trail around Mt Hood. One of the best loops in America with all aspects of the Pacific Cascades. I do the Timberline Trail every year. Here are my last two TT treks:

https://adventurecontinues.org/2018/09/11/timberline-trail-revisited-2018/

https://adventurecontinues.org/2017/08/19/timberline-trail/

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ChrisF
9 hours ago, ghsmith76 said:

I would highly recommend the Timberline Trail around Mt Hood. One of the best loops in America with all aspects of the Pacific Cascades. I do the Timberline Trail every year. Here are my last two TT treks:

https://adventurecontinues.org/2018/09/11/timberline-trail-revisited-2018/

https://adventurecontinues.org/2017/08/19/timberline-trail/

That's a great recommendation, thanks! I noticed someone say online to bring plenty of insect repellent. How bad do you think it would be in late August?

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ChrisF
On 3/10/2019 at 5:05 PM, balzaccom said:

There are a ton of routes in the Sierra that would work for this. And if you stay off the John Muir Trail you won't see many people or bears.  Emigrant Wilderness, Yosemite, SEKI, or the Ansel Adam Wilderness...pretty great hiking there.  We have lots of routes and trip reports on our website;  backpackthesierra.com

Thanks! I'll check out your site.

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ghsmith76
17 minutes ago, ChrisF said:

That's a great recommendation, thanks! I noticed someone say online to bring plenty of insect repellent. How bad do you think it would be in late August?

I would not categorize the Mt Hood TT as a high insect problem area. I have been up there during all seasons without any concerns. Of course there is probably a window of problem time in some areas but there really aren't any areas with standing water to breed mosquitos. The way the snow is pilling up now in the Cascades I would bet that August will be the perfect time to go, however, August is also a popular time. But crowds are not a huge issue since the 40 mile trail does stretch out well so you can choose to camp with others or find solitude. Bugs are definitely a problems in the Sisters and Goat Rocks area, but I would not include the Timberline Trail in that category.

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Mark

Some great suggestions in here.

I'm a bit confused by your request -- are you looking for a loop (hike that starts and ends at the same trailhead) or a thru/point-to-point hike where you start at one trailhead and end up at another (requiring a shuttle/two cars/other arrangements to get back to starting point)?

For loops, I would suggest looking at options in Olympic National Park and maybe North Cascades National Park, both require permits so go check out the websites and figure out your itinerary. You could also do point-to-point hikes there as well, with hiking on the Olympic Coast being an option if you wanted to do another coastal trip. Both are great. The Loowit Trail around Mt. St. Helens is fantastic, but is probably only a 3-4 day trip at most (around 30 miles, but with no camping in a 12-mile section which throws off equal-mileage days a bit).

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ChrisF
1 hour ago, Mark said:

Some great suggestions in here.

I'm a bit confused by your request -- are you looking for a loop (hike that starts and ends at the same trailhead) or a thru/point-to-point hike where you start at one trailhead and end up at another (requiring a shuttle/two cars/other arrangements to get back to starting point)?

For loops, I would suggest looking at options in Olympic National Park and maybe North Cascades National Park, both require permits so go check out the websites and figure out your itinerary. You could also do point-to-point hikes there as well, with hiking on the Olympic Coast being an option if you wanted to do another coastal trip. Both are great. The Loowit Trail around Mt. St. Helens is fantastic, but is probably only a 3-4 day trip at most (around 30 miles, but with no camping in a 12-mile section which throws off equal-mileage days a bit).

Thanks for those suggestions. I meant that I'm looking for a true loop hike that starts and ends at the same, or a nearby, trailhead.

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Mark
3 hours ago, ChrisF said:

Thanks for those suggestions. I meant that I'm looking for a true loop hike that starts and ends at the same, or a nearby, trailhead.

Got it, that makes more sense.

If you can get permits for it, a loop from Deer Park Campground, up Gray Wolf River to Falls campsite, on to Gray Wolf Pass, to Dose Meadows campsite, up Lost Pass to Cameron Pass (nice campsite in Cameron Basin below the pass) and then Grand Pass and Grand Valley, then back to  Deer Park via the ridge east of Obstruction Point. About 50 miles total and not very crowded at all, with spectacular scenery. I did it in late August and there were no bugs to speak of.

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ChrisF
21 hours ago, Mark said:

Got it, that makes more sense.

If you can get permits for it, a loop from Deer Park Campground, up Gray Wolf River to Falls campsite, on to Gray Wolf Pass, to Dose Meadows campsite, up Lost Pass to Cameron Pass (nice campsite in Cameron Basin below the pass) and then Grand Pass and Grand Valley, then back to  Deer Park via the ridge east of Obstruction Point. About 50 miles total and not very crowded at all, with spectacular scenery. I did it in late August and there were no bugs to speak of.

Thanks for this! That looks like a great hike. Here's a map of that area, with a light yellow highlight of the loop I think you're suggesting. I assume this took about 4 days?

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1v4SSpZSSL2VCtpiogOwqMSJHBN8XzVjr

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