Alta Trail Professional Reviews and Guides
"This expansive meadow attracts numerous types of wildlife, while affording awe-inspiring views of the Great Western Divide and Alta Peak. Begin by following the Lakes Trail (Hike 23) to the Lakes/Panther Gap Trail junction at 1.8 miles. Then follow the route to Alta Peak (Hike 24) to the junction with the Alta Peak Trail at 4.7 miles. From this point continue straight (southeast) through a sandy zone dotted with phlox, and then reenter the woods. The path is nearly level for some distance, then dips slightly to cross a small creek before arriving at the head of Alta Meadow at 5.6 miles."
--Laurel Scheidt, Hiking Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks (Falcon Guides).
"Although the Alta Trail formally begins in the Giant Forest, this shorter route allows hearty day hikers a 360-degree view from an 11,000-foot-plus peak.Begin by following the Lakes Trail (Hike 23) to the Lakes/Panther Gap Trail junction at 1.8 miles, and continue straight ahead (south), toward the gap. The route alternates through sunny meadows and shady forest, then crosses several small, fern-lined forks of the headwaters of Wolverton Creek."
"Alta Peak is a magnificent and popular Sierra summit. It is well liked and well traveled, with good reason. From its superior perch, the entirety of Sequoia National Park can be observed. “Breathtaking” is an understatement for the views from Alta Peak; to comprehend this place’s majesty, try standing atop the peak and breathing in the 360-degree view. If your schedule allows for only one tough all-day hike in the park, this is the trail to take. Its central location provides views of some of the most magnificent scenery in the park. The way will not be crowded, but there will almost always be fellow like-minded individuals enjoying the vistas and forested trail."
--Allen Riedel, 100 Classic Hikes in Southern California (The Mountaineers Books).
"Alta Peak’s airy summit offers one of the best views available on the western side of Sequoia via a maintained trail. While arduous, a one-day ascent is a viable option for strong hikers who are well acclimatized. Lesser mortals have the option of a 2–3 day backpack trip, with a basecamp at either Alta Meadow or Mehrten Meadow Camp. However many days are needed, the supreme vista from Alta Peak is a just reward for the effort involved in getting there."
--Mike White, Top Trails Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks: 64 Must-do Hikes for Everyone (Wilderness Press).
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