Lake Dorothy from Convict Lake

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August 25, 2005

Trip Summary

This was my end of summer vacation trip. A three day backpack and my usual Whitney dayhike interspersed with soaking and maintenance at my favorite hot spring. I could say it was a celebration of my 40th birthday, but I always go out at the end of the summer, when I take my vacation. As my trips often end up, I went solo. All in all, a good week away from home.

Dorothy Lakes Summary

The Convict Creek drainage is a fascinating and beautiful glacial bowl on the East Side of the Sierra Nevada, just south of Mammoth. Generally around 10K feet, with peaks to 13K feet around. As it is not on the granite to the west, most of the surrounding peaks can be scrambled up without great difficulty, also the colors in the rocks are spectacular. Access from either Convict Lake or Laurel Lakes.

Hike Description

Thursday, after the morning soak, I got to the Convict Lake trailhead [7600] at 9am.I made decent time up the canyon...about three hours up to Lake Dorothy [6.2 miles, 10,275] with my 30 pound (14 Kg) pack, not ultralight, but certainly under the unpleasantness of a 35 pound pack. As I wasn't feeling my best, I set up camp (not much, given that I use a bivy sack), and laid down to rest and read (Heyer's Sylvester). Malaise, headache and drowsiness, couldn't concentrate on reading, didn't actually fall asleep, shouldn't be the altitude, since I was only 3000 feet higher than the previous night where I'd slept well. It wasn't until mid-afternoon that I had the blazing realization that I'd neglected to take in any caffeine all day. Application of a cup of tea brought me back to full consciousness, although not in time to do the scramble/dayhike (to Bright Dot Lake) I had planned. Eventually had dinner and retired to the bivy to read by headlamp. Yes, finished Sylvester (by headlamp).


Sevenhah Cliffs and Laurel Mountain
Me on top of Mt Muir
from the Hikers Trail, atop a minor terminal moraine.

Convict Lake panorama
Convict Lake panorama
from the Hikers Trail, atop a minor terminal moraine.
(larger image: 1386 x 170, 146K)

Weather and Conditions

Sunny and pleasant, a bit of a breeze at night, although my campsite was well protected.

6.2 miles, 2700 feet of ascent, 3 hours on the trail. Bunnyhike Rating: 46.


Map of hike location and route detail maps, route in blue.

Map with route
Detailed Map (125K)

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Lake Dorothy / Robert Parks / / revised September '05