On the way in we hiked by Cottonwood meadows
And we saw some bear tracks, but no bears. :(
Pausing by one of the best example of Native American mortars, on a rock that spans the trail
The first deep stream crossing, about knee height at the shallowest. And FREEZING cold!
The second stream crossing, with 4+ feet depth at this shaky log crossing.
Downstream we found a knee-height and shallower point to cross, but it was pretty wide (and very cold!)
Pan of Smith Meadow
The trail we took in supposedly crosses the Smith meadow at this point, but it was so overgrown and muddy it was impossible to follow. We ended up skirting around the edge of the meadow to prevent damaging the fragile area.
Map check at the base of a big tree with lots of fallen bark
Approaching Smith Peak - there was still a bit of snow on this ~7800 foot peak
Pan from Smith Peak, overlooking the Hetch Hetchy Valley
View to the southeast from the peak.
Snow with suncups.
A dead tree on the Smith Peak summit
(it reminded us of the Ansel Adams Sentinel Dome tree)
Tree pan with summit block to the right
Looking down toward Rancheria Falls
Can you pick out the green tents near the shadow by the falls?
Afternoon clouds building up over the higher peaks.
View down to Hetch Hetchy and up the grand canyon of the Tuolumne
Our favorite tree.
David found a horseshoe by the summit. ??
Campsite on the Smith Peak summit
one of the best backcountry campsites I've had. Dry though - have to carry your water up.
More views from the summit.
Looking up the grand canyon of the Tuolumne from the summit
Campsite shot. The summit is the rock to the left
My Tarptent Cloudburst on the left, David's Integral Designs bug liner on the right
Another campsite shot, along with the typical Yosemite marker for Smith Peak.
Settled in for dinner while enjoying the views.
David taking photos from the summit.
Watching the sunset.
Bex and sunset
In the morning the clouds were gone and we could see the peaks in the distance.
On the hike out we had a brief glance of the peak behind us through the burned out forest.