Me and my friend Violet (who I’ve known since high school!) did a 3 day trip into Emigrant Wilderness from Kennedy Meadows July 6-8th. Our original plan was to do Young Lakes in Yosemite but the snow is still too crazy up there above 8500 feet so we chose a beautiful lower elevation area instead.

The hills are alive! On the trail to the lake

Our first night was spent at Kennedy Lakes which is wicked beautiful! We saw some Llamas chilling with their people and there was VERY talkative cows up above the wide meadows as well.

Kennedy Lake is super full right now!

The skeeters were surprisingly chill (I only got 1 bite here, miracle of miracles!) and we had a great private spot that required crossing the creek outlet from Kennedy Lake, which was pretty deep in spots! We found a chill wider spot to cross, the water hitting just above our knees and very cold!

Zef crossing the creek to camp at Kennedy Lake

We enjoyed a relaxing evening and adventured a little cross country on the bank of the lake to get a closer look. The colors, shadows, and surrounding snowy peaks were SO amazing!

The creek from the lake
Our view from camp

The next morning we got up at 6am and saw a deer near our camp, eeeeeee! Soon we were packed up and had to immediately across the creek to get back on the trail. I gave Violet the trail name Zero Fucks or Zef for short since she would just jam through all the water along the trail like NBD. I was having a harder time because it was sooo cold my feet were aching and it felt like I was walking on stumps when I hit the other bank, I was in the water for less than a minute! The air was already warm though at 7:30am so our wet shoes would likely dry out quickly and my feet warmed up fast. We hit the junction to head up by the Reservoir in 2 hours and were already feeling the day heat up further.

Apparently I stand like this sometimes… 🙄

We climbed along the reservoir to another creek crossing this one shallow and wide, with crashing Falls peeking out from the trees above. It was refreshing to walk through at this point in the day and I didn’t mind my feet being wet at all!

Chill creek crossing

We hit our camp near Summit Creek around 1:30pm and we were both very hot and tired. We spent a few hours hydrating, eating, and relaxing before doing some day hiking up to some awesome granite valley views. There was still a little snow left along the trail, even on this scorching day!

Zef checking out the views
Being silly at our break spot

Our break spot was on a wide granite area overlooking Summit Creek, which was flowing very high and not crossable. We saw a doe and fawn here and even a marmot!!! I was super stoked because I love those furry turds and did not know they hung out in this area! Finally we started getting hungry again and headed back to our camp for dinner and chilling out.


The Marmot kingdom

We were in our tents by sunset and feeling bummed it was our last night already. Too soon it was morning and we were enjoying our last trail coffee. A young buck came through our camp and hung out eating snacks right by us! This is the most deer I have ever seen on a backpacking trip! We got ready quickly trying to beat the heat and hike in the shaded morning. It was so quiet and peaceful and we did not see anyone on the trail until the end of the Reservoir. We also saw another Marmot, squeeeee!

Morning at the Reservoir 

We hit the Kennedy Meadows store around 10:30am to buy cold drinks and chips before getting in the car. It was glorious! It was an amazing trip and has definitely got me feeling super stoked and ready for me & Sarahs trip to the PCT in Oregon & Washington for 120 miles Nobo starting next week!

Almost back to Kennedy Meadows