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Two-day backpacking loop in King's Canyon / Sequoia

Hi all,

I'm planning a trip for myself and a few friends, and was hoping to get some suggestions on routes. A few details below:

- We're going at the end of July, so not sure if there are some areas of the park that are better than others during that time.

- We have a decent sized group (6-7 people).

- We are aiming for two full days of hiking, with one night spent in the backcountry in between. Ideally the route could be a loop so as to not retrace our steps on the way out and get to see more of the park. Alternatively, we can do a linear route if it starts + ends near the park shuttle, which would allow us to get back to our cars.

- In terms of difficulty, we are aiming for a medium difficulty hike (no more than 10 miles per day). This is our first trip to King's Canyon, so if the route can incorporate as many different types of terrain / vistas as possible, that would be ideal.

Thanks so much for your help!


Check out the BACKCOUNTRY forum and threads for suggestions in the Sierra, Kings and Sequoia.

Depends if you are in SoCal or NoCal and if you are interested in the west or east side of the Sierra.  Different kinds of hikes and things to see.

West side's trails have longer approaches.  The exception is west Sequoia to Heather, Mosquito, Pear Lakes and Alta Peak trips.

The east side along US-395 give more options for shorter approach hikes.  The main difference from the west side is that you get to lakes within 6 miles or so, but the trail heads start around 10,000'.  The steepness of the trails (east/west) are about the same.

Not many back packing loops in the 2-3 day range.  But don't be disappointed.  The scenery is outstanding both ways.

The trick is being able to get wilderness permits on the day and route you would like this late in the season.  Have an alternative (or two) in mind when you request your permit (phone/internet).

Usually late July is a good time for getting over the passes from the east.  This year is a very low snow year and most trails are completely clear of snow a month earlier than normal. This also means some creeks and water supplies may not be running full later in the season.  But you shouldn't have any water problems unless you spend a lot of time above 11,000'.

Rowell meadows, head up to Jennie Lake for Lunch, over JO pass and down into Twin Lakes for the night. 


The next day, over Silliman Pass, through Ranger Lake, and out again past Seville Lake.


WE've got a trip report (we did this in more days, and took our time about it) on our website:

October 31, 2020
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