Friday, January 30, 2015

Day Hike To Big Baldy In Sequoia National Park

Dale Matson

Click On Photographs To Enlarge

 Valley Haze

 Trail Along Ridge

 U.S.G.S. Marker At Baldy Peak
 Photograph Of My Wife And Me Taken By A Friend
 Central Sierra View From The West

The hike to Big Baldy is about 1.5 hours from Fresno CA off Highway 180 eastbound. Once inside the park, there is a fork with 180 heading to Cedar Grove and The General’s Highway (158) heading south. After about 10 miles southbound on 158, you will come to a sign on your right that says, “Big Baldy Trailhead”. If you pass the sign and go a bit further, you will see a road to your left that heads to Big Meadow. There is limited parking on the shoulder by the trailhead sign. The trail follows a ridge and is about five miles total out and back.

The trailhead elevation is about 7,500’ with about 500’ of elevation gain outbound by the time you reach Big Baldy. A person could ski or snowshoe the ridge in the winter. [After a fresh snowfall, sometimes the road is closed at the junction with highway 180 for snow removal]. I noticed flags in the trees marking the route. This hike is of only moderate difficulty but there is no water along the route. The view on top of Big Baldy is well worth the short hike. It allows for a panorama of sorts and you can see Kaiser Peak to the north.

There is a private resort “Montecito Sequoia” just south of the trailhead on highway 158. They have a lodge, cabins, groomed ski trails in the winter and eating facilities. Call ahead to see if they are open and the road is open to them in winter. The view of the Sierras from the lodge porch is wonderful.

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