Home › Forums › Trails › Theodore Solomons Trail › Alternative to the John Muir Trail
- This topic has 6 replies, 4 voices, and was last updated 7 years, 10 months ago by Sebastian Steinhauer.
January 12, 2015 at 8:31 am #14385
With permits for the JMT being more and more difficult to get, it might be worth looking at alternative routes through the Sierras.
One such route is the Theodore Solomon Trail, which takes a lower elevation route that roughly parallels the JMT.
Anyone looked into this trail?January 14, 2015 at 9:00 am #14506Rick BergstromParticipant
Jeff, this certainly could be interesting, but NOT for beginners!
Resupply points, backcountry/wilderness navigation/routefinding will certainly deter a large majority of hikers on this route.
Definitely NOT a “walk in the park”!!January 21, 2015 at 5:46 pm #14549
The Central Library in Los Angeles had a copy of Dennis Gagnon’s 1987 guide to the Theodore Solomons Trail. I’ve been going over it, and it sounds like there are many areas where the trails are not maintained. Need to do more research on this, but I’m still intrigued.January 23, 2015 at 4:39 pm #14599
I’ve put together a crude GPX track and interactive map. I traced using GPSVisualizer, so it’s not perfect but it provides some idea of what the original route looked like (according to Gagnon’s book).
There were some sections where the book showed a trail but my map overlays did not. This may be an error or inaccuracy in the map overlays, or it may mean that the trail was no longer maintained and has since “disappeared.”
I’m also hearing word that a number of sections (i.e. Tephite Valley) are very “wild” and require a lot of bushwalking and route finding, and that a key bridge is no longer there, making crossing more difficult.
What I hope to do through research is find a route that leverages well-maintained and easy-to-follow trails as much as possible, even if it means altering the route from it’s original course.
Here’s where I’ll be posting my research: http://socalhiker.net//backpacking/theodore-solomons-trail/April 3, 2015 at 7:39 am #15120john mParticipant
Got a copy of the tst guide back when I was planing to do the pct decades ago – was looking for a less traveled route. hiked a couple pieces over the years. Stopped above the Tehipite decent when there was a bridge, but since then heard that it washed out. Disappoined. Would like to combine jmt and tst in a loop someday. Glad someone else is looking into this trail.April 4, 2015 at 2:01 pm #15129
Thanks, John. I’ll be hiking three sections of the Theodore Solomons Trail this year, including Tehipite Valley. It will be interesting to learn more about trail conditions. Maybe if there is enough interest, the sections that are not currently maintained can get some more attention.August 2, 2015 at 10:48 am #16432Sebastian SteinhauerParticipant
I was able to get the book and have started researching the hike right after returning from a very crowded JMT thru-hike. I am looking forward to hearing about trail conditions.
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