It's now officially autumn, and that means that backpacking in the Sierra is a slightly different ballgame.
First of all, the days are actually shorter, and you really notice this on the trail. We found ourselves climbing into our sleeping bags at night when it was dark, and then checking our watches to find out that it wasn't quite 8 o'clock yet.
It made for some nice long snoozes, especially since the sun didn't come up behind the peaks until after 7 a.m. When was the last time you spent 10 hours in bed just relaxing?
The fall colors are spectacular in the Sierra, that's for sure. But don't be misled by all this warm sunny weather. It can get cold at night, and a storm can change your outlook overnight. Make sure you check the forecast before you head out on any trips.
And this time of year, it's always a good idea to have a shortcut planned out in case you need to escape some nasty weather.
Getting hit by a snowstorm when you are two days from the trailhead is not as much fun as it sounds.