The early finish allowed time for the long drive down 395, up to Kennedy Meadows and well beyond to the Monache Meadows trailhead. The driving directions posted on Climber.Org for this trailhead are very good. The Monache Jeep Road was quite an adventure, with the last 9 miles taking about 70 minutes. Very pretty area. The hike to Olancha Peak is about 15 miles round-trip with a gain of about 4,200'. I started off on a cool Monday morning at 7am. The route follows a stock trail east for a short while then reaches the PCT going north, eventually reaching a point where one heads up forested then scree slopes to the peak, which is topped with a radio relay station that is actually visible from the PCT. I summitted at 11.45am, staying 45 min. and enjoying views of Langley, Whitney, the Kaweahs, Great West divide. The register is in a bolted box which box though apparently placed in 1959 looks about one year old. The one register book was placed in 1994 although the first entry is not until 1997; it is exactly half full. A number of entries this year, including one yesterday. Heading down at 12.30, I reached the trail after about 50 min. then sped back arriving at the trailhead just after 3 pm. Then it was a very long and winding drive back, several hours down to Kernville and eventually Bakersfield where the day ended, with a heightened appreciation for the vastness of the southern Sierra.
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