Fastpacking Trips

2023 Fastpacking Trip Dates: We are sorry to say we will not be offering any trips in 2023. Our team has relocated and taken a new job that won’t allow for guiding next season. Check back in late 2023 for possible fastpacking trips being offered in 2024.

Route Overview

Our fastpacking trips cover approximately 30-50 miles over the course of three days. The vertical gain and loss will vary depending on the exact route but you can expect between 8,000-12,000ft. There may be options to do a bit more for those who feel they are getting shorted! Our packs weigh less than 20lbs fully loaded with water and food which makes this mileage far more fun than it would be with a traditional pack weight of 40lbs or more.

Who should consider joining one of our fastpacking trips?

You do not need to have multi-day backcountry experience or fastpacking experience to come on these trips. Your guides will be able to teach you all you need to know to move through the terrain smoothly, safely, and with confidence. A base of fitness and experience hiking or running on trails is highly suggested for our trips. Being able to fairly comfortably cover 15-20 trail miles in a day without a pack is a good litmus to know you should be able to handle our routes.

What is included in the price?

A fully guided wilderness fastpacking experience, this is what you are coming for after all! We also provide all dinner and breakfast food while on the trail. You are responsible for bringing your own lunch/snack food. Details of what this looks like will be provided after you sign up for your trip. Below is the list of gear we provide. (note, in 2021 packs/poles cost extra, in 2022 we are including everything in the base price).

  • Ultra light sleeping bag and pad
  • Ultra light shelter (fully waterproof, or simply bug proof, depending on the weather)
  • All cooking equipment (stoves, pot, cup/bowl/spoon)
  • Group first aid kits, emergency satellite communications devices and detailed topo maps.
  • Ultraspire 30L fastpack
  • Trekking Poles

Gateway Cities

If you are traveling from the North you’ll be coming through Yreka, CA. There are many lodging options here. Yreka is between 1-2 hours drive from our starting point. There are some options in the Scott Valley, CA which are closer, but these options are fairly limited. You can also camp the night before your trip at or near our trailhead.

If you are traveling from the South you’ll be coming through Redding or Weaverville CA. Weaverville has a number of lodging options and is between 1-2 hours from our starting trailhead location.

As your trip date gets closer we’ll have more detailed information about specific trailhead starting location and we can help you with the best lodging choices for the night before your trip starts.

What we love about the Trinity Alps and Marble Mountains

The Trinity Alps and Marble Mountains are not popular by California wilderness standards, but that does not mean they are any less wild or grand. Sheer granite faces, cascading wild rivers, huge old growth conifers, countless alpine lakes, and hundreds of miles of trail are all in store. The Trinities and Marbles might not be on the main stream radar, and yeah, they are not adjacent to a major city or freeway, but we think that is a good thing! For some of the best large scale wilderness experiences anywhere in the United States, these mountains are where it’s at!

Detailed Daily Logistics

Day 1: We will meet at the specified trailhead at 9am. (to be determined based on current conditions. All trailheads can be reached with a normal passenger vehicle). You will want to arrive at the trail with all the gear and food outlined in your pre-trip packing list. (You will always be free to contact us during the lead up to your trip with any questions). We will get acquainted, your guides will hand out Wilderness Fastpacking provided gear and group food. Then we’ll all dive in and pack our bags together. Learning to to be efficient and dialed on packing your bag is a key fastpacking skill you’ll be acquiring.

We’ll aim to get on the trail by about 10am. Our plan for the day will be to cover between 10-16 miles depending on the specific itinerary. Our group will generally stay close together. If there is some separation that happens on longer climbs we will regroup regularly, most of the time in locations with choice views!

We will arrive at camp in the late afternoon to early evening. There your guides will help you set up your shelters and we’ll all get the kitchen prepped for a hearty dinner. We will all cook dinner together, but in small groups of 2-3 people who will be sharing a cook set. This is the optimal way to cook even in large groups with the nature of the weight and size of ultra light cooking equipment. Plus, we want you to LEARN! Cooking in the backcountry can be so much more than simply pouring boiling water in a plastic bag! Our meals are made with real ingredients and are quite simple to prepare. After dinner we’ll have plenty of time to relax, watch the sunset, converse, and generally rest up for the next days adventures.

Day 2: During the summer months first light comes early. We’ll get water on for coffee/tea around 6:30am. Breakfast by 7:30am and have camp packed up, out on the trail around 8:30am. We do hot breakfast at Wilderness Fastpacking. If you are worried about getting moving on a full stomach don’t. We always make sure that everyone warms up slowly and can ease into the days efforts.

We will cover between 12-18 miles on the second day. We’ll likely pass by lakes that we can stop at to cool off, and we’ll cross over at least one or two passes with ample opportunity for world class photo ops. Much like day 1 we’ll arrive in camp in the late afternoon to early evening and repeat our evening ritual.

Day 3: On our final day we’ll begin with a similar time frame as day 2 and 3, though potentially with a little later starting time depending on how many miles we have left to cover to exit the wilderness back to our cars. Well likely have between 8-12 miles to cover on the final day. It’s our goal to have everyone back to the trailhead in time to make part or all of their drive back home or to your next nights lodging without having to press too hard.

As we wrap up our grand adventure and arrive back where we started we’ll make sure we have time to debrief, exchange phone numbers to photos can be shared. We’ll do a gear inventory to make sure everything gets back to where it needs to go.

We want everyone to leave the Trinity Alps feeling accomplished, tired, and inspired, with a bunch of new tools in your fastpacking took kit, to use on your next wilderness adventure whether with us, or out on your own.

Have Questions? Send us an email here:

Ready to take the plunge and get yourself hooked on fastpacking in some of the best wild landscapes America has to offer? Hit the link to our sign up form below. We can’t wait to share the Trinity Alps with you this summer!