Day two of camping in the Inyo National Forest
-Monache Trail detail
Here is the Jackass Meadow trailhead off of Kennedy Meadows Road.
Do you know the correct fork to take here? Right? Left?
Overall, the trail is easy and fun to drive. There is a moderate technical rock section at approximately 1.7 miles that requires four wheel drive and high clearance. Adding the additional two miles to arrive at the primitive campsites definitely requires four wheel drive (four low and a rear locker makes it easy) and high clearance is a necessity.
Be sure to mind the boundaries and do not cross over any imaginary lines that are determined by marker posts. Doing so can get you a violation from the ranger or at a minimum a stern warning. Fortunately for us, we maintained on the trails at all times. Tread Lightly, remember?
Does this not look like a swamp monster coming up from the bottom of a lagoon full of cow pee?
OK, it's just El Chupo exiting the first crossing of the Kern River...
Continuing on from this point, it is worth crossing the meadow and driving up to the abandoned structures of Olivia's, just make sure to look with your eyes and to not disturb the things that exist there today. The trail up to Olivia's is approximately one mile and ends in a turn-around to exit the way you entered.
Though we did get to see lots of cows roaming the open fields.
Our family photo in Monache Meadow with Olancha Peak in the background.
Here I am jumping in with many long-time moto friends for a group photo. Next year I too may be doing this run on a motorcycle. No, seriously.
The final section of trail, which is completely optional, is moderate and requires four wheel drive and high clearance. The Kern River crossing is deeper and longer in this section, but not a problem for the Jeeps.
Because dinner time was approaching and the kids had fallen asleep in the back seat (they slept even while we were wheeling on Monache trail), we decided to drive Blackrock Road down to Sherman Pass and back to camp.
Passing by Smith Meadow, it was impossible to not to stop and photograph this lush landscape.
Thanks again to Robin Reid for editing our pictures.