Route Options Connecting
TYT & PCT
Sonora Pass to Bond Pass
PCT & TYT
Connecting the TYT and PCT across the Emigrant Wilderness opens up alternative routes for hikers along the PCT.
These alternative routes open up much more of the Emigrant Wilderness for PCT hikers who normally follow the PCT route around Emigrant Wilderness.
Northbound PCT hikers have two options. The best alternative route is off the PCT at the top of Jack Main Canyon through Bond Pass onto the TYT across Emigrant Wilderness down to the resupply service at Kennedy Meadows Pack Station.
The Second Alternative Route would be through Bond Pass from the PCT onto the TYT, but instead of following the TYT to the Northwest down to Kennedy Meadows we continue North off the TYT at Grizzly Peak over Big Sam to reconnect with the PCT at the Kennedy Canyon trail junction. This cuts us through the Heart of the High Emigrant Basin.
From the Kennedy Canyon trail junction we can continue North over Leavitt Peak to Sonora Pass along the PCT, or hike West past Kennedy Lake to the TYT just above and two miles South of Kennedy Meadows Pack Station, where we are going to pick up a critical resupply.
This site covers all of the above routes with maps and trail guide pages.
These are fantastic trail options for Northbound backpackers that really open up the beauties of the Emigrant Wilderness for your inspection, rather than hiking around them on the PCT.
The detailed maps on this page above cover these potential alternative routes we can hike across the High Emigrant Wilderness. This series of trail junctions tying a series of positions along the PCT with a series of points along the TYT opens up a huge number of local Emigrant Wilderness backpacking trip options as well as giving well-informed PCT & TYT hikers a whole set of alternatives to the classic routes of the PCT & TYT.
We really need a "bird's-eye view," to make sense out of these alternative routes, one that puts them into a broad context.
One Map to Link them All
So I designed the Sonora Pass Region Map and the Emigrant Wilderness Schematic Map to highlight our TYT-PCT route options while backpacking across the Emigrant Wilderness. Click the marked routes on the Sonora Pass Region Map for detailed maps, and the red dots for that location's trail guide information.
Local Backpacking Loop Significance
These trails connecting the PCT and TYT across the Emigrant Wilderness open up huge local backpacking loops that pretty much stay within the Emigrant Wilderness. We may hike through the top of Jack Main Canyon into Yosemite, and visit the slice of the Toiyabe National Forest between Dorothy Lake Pass and the Kennedy Canyon trail junction, but our longer loop hikes here in Emigrant Wilderness will be focused and centered on the High Emigrant Basin.
(High Emigrant Basin Definition)
PCT & TYT
1> Kennedy Lake trail
An East-West trail linking the Tahoe to Yosemite Trail from the Kennedy Lake trail junction 2.67 miles South of Kennedy Meadows running East via Kennedy Lake to the Pacific Crest Trail at Kennedy Canyon which is 7.97 miles South of Sonora Pass.
2> Kennedy Canyon on the PCT to the TYT at Grizzly Peak
South from the PCT at the Kennedy Canyon trail junction over Big Sam across Emigrant Basin to the TYT at Grizzly Peak. This route departs the PCT to hike the TYT through the heart of Emigrant Wilderness. We can continue South on the TYT to rejoin the PCT in the top of Jack Main Canyon, or we can turn fantastic backpacking loops around the High Emigrant Wilderness.
3>TYT at Grizzly Peak through Emigrant Pass to the PCT at the West West Walker Bridge
This trail is of little use to long distance through hikers as its line does not fit into the purpose of either the PCT or TYT. But it does open up loop possibilities and access for local backpackers, especially those using the Leavitt Meadow Trailhead.
These three segments of trail connecting the TYT and PCT across the Emigrant Wilderness open up a wide range of local loops and trailhead to trailhead backpacking trips.
3> The Tilden Lake Loop vs. the PCT route.
We have the option of hiking around Tilden Lake on the Southbound TYT or Wilmer Lake on the PCT.
Tilden and Wilmer Lakes
(last PCT-TYT split)