~ Day 5: Colby Pass to Kaweah Basin ~
Starting early in the cirque below Colby Lake I kept a fast pace almost all the way to Colby Pass. The wildflowers along the outlet creek from Colby Lake were beautiful. I took a break at an amazing camp site right above the shore of the lake (mental note: great camp for next time). The altitude, heat and humidity finally slowed me down at the base of the long boulderfield but I made it to the top by mid morning. The trailwork on the way to the top is impressive, much like the switchbacks on Mt. Whitney.
Creek below Colby Lake.
|Waterfalls below Colby Lake.|
|Panorama from campsite along Colby Lake.|
|The final switchbacks to Colby Pass.|
|Colby Lake from Colby Pass.|
|Colby Pass, 12,000 feet.|
|View from Colby Pass.|
I left the trail at about 9,600 feet and headed up cross country route to Picket Lake. I had been down this route before but I missed the right crossing point on the ridge this time. I ended up doing some class III climbing on the way to Picket Lake. From the lake I followed the easy cross country in Picket Basin to the crossing to Kaweah Basin and made it to the HST Meetup before dark.
|XC route: Follow the treeline from right to left up from Kern Kaweah Creek to Picket Lake.|
|Cross country route up to Picket Lake and Kaweah Basin.|
|Early morning in Kaweah Basin: Richlong8, MS2Capisco, Andrey, Rockyroad, Gazelle, Oleander, Hobbes & Some Dude.|