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Hike Route (I don't know why the maps doesn't show Nellie Lake)
Here is a link to this same hike from 2014 for comparison. http://midsierramusing.blogspot.com/2014/05/day-hike-to-nellie-lake.html
In 2014 I did this hike at the end of April with less snow on the trail. It was a drought year and quite a contrast to this year's near record snow. The particulars of getting to Nellie Lake are in the earlier posting. It is a 2-hour drive from Fresno.
This year I waited for the snow to melt out until mid July. It is still early in the hiking season because of difficult trail access. There were several deadfalls across the trail that has not been cleared by the forest service yet. Additionally, the snow, which began about 8,000’, covered the trail in several spots. I brought orange flagging tape to help keep track of my route and took it down as I returned inbound. I met a couple of older guys I met on this hike a couple of years ago. They had tried the hike two weeks ago and lost the trail. They asked if they could have the tape that I had taken down to use for themselves and agreed to take it down when they headed back.
The mosquitos were evident and I was glad to have insect repellent with me. My total time out was 6:26. I took it slow to keep my heart rate near the limits my cardiologist set on my last treadmill stress test and am scheduled for a retest this month.
This “early” in the season, the trail crosses two seasonal creeks. There is also water available at Nellie Lake. I used water purification pills. I got an early start, beginning at 6am. My start temperature was a comfortable 50 degrees but my ending temperature was about 80 degrees even at 7,000’. We have been in the middle of a string of triple digit temperatures here in Fresno CA which is about 300 feet in elevation.
I am still traveling light with the Mountain Hardware race vest as a daypack and my Sony A6000 camera with the Sony/Zeiss 16-24 f4 lens.
Nellie Lake is a typical small lake in the Sierra National Forest surrounded by trees and crystal clear. I miss not having my Airedale Susie along but she is too long in the tooth for this kind of hike these days at age 12. Here is a posting that shows her at various locations including Nellie Lake on previous hikes. http://midsierramusing.blogspot.com/2014/05/susie-airedale-my-trail-companion-part-i.html
One Of Many Deadfalls Across The Trail
Area Where Snow Depth Is Monitored
First Sign Of Snow About 8,000'
First Creek Crossing Outbound
Nellie Lake 16mm (APS-C)
One Of Several Trail Markers Placed By Previous Hikers
I Carry A GPS And A Compass