The scenery on this route is unparalleled, especially if you like the Sierras. Almost all of the trail is above treeline and there are lakes and granite everywhere. For me the day was incredibly difficult. I don't know how much of it was the altitude and how much was lack of fitness. The trailhead is at about 9,000 feet of elevation and we stayed between nine and twelve thousand feet the entire day. The climbs were very sustained with 8-12 miles uphill (or downhill) in a row. It ended up taking us almost 20 hours to arrive at the north lake trailhead. I highly recommend this route, but be prepared for a very difficult 55 miles. You can read another writeup on the route from Leor Pantilat here.
|The route map|
|Approaching Muir Pass|
|Steve topping out at Muir Pass|
|Descending from Muir Pass|