nkan02 wrote:I recently did the traverse the second time from that approach and it is fairly straightforward. In fact, the lower trail has improved since 2 years ago. No problem at all finding the turnoff, etc. For some reason, I (we) had some trouble finding the "trail" in the upper basin, just before getting to Cottonwood lake, both up or down. Maybe it was just tricky with the overnight pack, but not too bad. I have a .gpx track, I'll update my 2 year old TR with it. Oh and we stayed at some religious retreat for some ridiculously cheap money. It was pretty nice. It's called "Baha" something. I would stay there again and one can pack in a lot of people in there if needed.
Regarding Cottonwood Creek TH: We are on the fence regarding this issue for this weekend. We have heard the trail was difficult but easier now. That's reassuring but not a concern given GPS. The issue: We read that the best campsites are around 10,000 and that leaves an approach similar to BHP from SCL in terms of time not difficulty.
So, are there campsites around Cottonwood Lake? It seems that if you can't camp near Cottonwood Lake then this route doesn't save much vs SCL. My thought was the whole advantage of this new route was to avoid BHP(overhyped?) and be at the base of the routes. But if you have to camp 45 mins away from the start of the routes, how is it better? Maybe I am missing something? Hopefully someone can add some info to that issue specifically.