Photo Album

Hike via the Pacific Crest Trail to Raymond Lake, starting from the Tamarack Junction Trailhead on the Blue Lakes Road (near Hope Valley west of Markleeville, California).  I passed 20 backpackers on the trail (9 northbound, 7 southbound, 4 sitting), only two of whom were grizzled enough to be PCT through hikers. There were 9 fishermen at the lake when I arrived and the best campsite was occupied.  I didn’t see any fish being caught, but the two fishermen who left about the same time I did said they caught five trout.  Saw six deer, or maybe the same three twice since they were in the same area near an unnamed pond on the way in and out.

This is a longish hike from the PCT trailhead at Tamarack Junction.  It’s much shorter from Lower Sunset Lake or the Wet Meadows area, accessible when the dirt roads are dry.

The trail is good with moderate grades, except for a section traversing steep and loose volcanic rock at 38.61851° N 119.84413° W. Avoid and climb around (above) this area if the steep snow field  is covering the trail.  The trail was dry and reasonably good right now, but it is subject to erosion.

17.17 mi (7.47 mi uphill, 7.55 mi downhill, 2.08 mi flat)
2200 ft total ascent – 14.1 % uphill grade, 83.6 % downhill grade
8:28:19 total time (7:28:43 moving, 0:59:36 stopped)
0:26:07 pace (2.3 mph average speed)
30.0 difficulty, 57.9 effort