1995 Wildflower Hike

On Sunday, July 30, 1995, five members of the Sacramento, California area chapter of Mensa and two friends bravely ventured forth on 4 mile hike in the Sierra Nevada. The hike was part of the monthly "Wimp's Hike" of Sacramento Regional Mensa. Our fearless leader was Larry Fields (rah!); other participants were husband and wife Mensans Betty and Robert, Mensan Steven and non-Mensan (?) girlfriend Cheryl, myself (Jim Hoagland, a Mensan) and my non-Mensan friend Molly.

Our hike left from Highway 88 at the parking lot that is just west of the Carson Pass parking lot. We then hiked north and west along the Pacific Crest Trail to Meiss Pass and the about a half mile beyond. There we stopped for lunch, rested or went exploring, then headed back to the parking lot. Everybody but Molly and I then battled killer mosquitos at Wood's Lake.

Along the trail we saw many varieties of wildflowers, though not as many as last year's hike from Carson Pass to Lake Winnemucca. There was snow a little ways away from the trail and at one or two points along the trail.


I brought a camera along and took a few pictures and later scanned them into digital format. The pictures are on this page. Be warned that there are around 800kb of photos on this page and might take a while to download. Go take a coffee break or something.

Directions to the Trailhead

The route we took from the Sacramento area is U.S. 50 east. Take the Sly Park exit and turn left onto the old Morman Emigrant Trail just past Jenkinson Lake (this can be tricky if you haven't done it before). Head east when you get to Highway 88. If you reach Carson pass, you just passed up the trailhead.

Alternately, you can just take U.S. 50 to Highway 89 south. Turn right onto Highway 88 east. The trailhead is just past Carson pass.

The trailhead is at the parking lot a couple hundred feet on the Sacramento side (west) of the Carson Pass parking lot. You might want to stop at Carson pass to use the restroom and to look at the information posted there, then head down the hill to the other parking lot.

Wimp's Hikes

Wimp's Hikes are functions of Sacramento Regional Mensa and is coordinated by Larry Fields. They are scheduled most months and a forecast of rain cancels them. The hikes are designed for non-hikers and the saying is "that we will gladly go a slow as the slowest hiker" (or something to that effect). I wish to take this opportunity to thank Larry for all the work he puts into the hikes.


Mensa is a international society whose sole requirement for membership is an IQ rated in the upper 2% of the population. (Well, actually another requirement is that you pay the annual dues.) IQ tests, SAT scores, GRE scores, the Mensa admissions test, and a couple other tests are accepted as proof of intelligence.

For many members (myself included), Mensa is largely a social organization with parties, hikes, Regional Gatherings, happy hours, and other activities. There are also educational events each month.

Some people assume that alot of grandstanding and boasting ("I'm smarter that you are!", etc.) goes on at Mensa activities. In my three years of Mensa experience, this has not been the case. As with any organization, Mensa has a few "bad apples", but my Mensa experiences have been entirely positive.

Mensa, as an organization, holds no political views, though its members often do.

If you can identify anything in the photos that I don't mention, have corrections to what I have, or have some WWW pointers to people and places mentioned here, please drop me some e-mail (webmaster@hoagland.org).
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Copyright © by James Hoagland
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created: 2 August 1995
last updated: 28 August 1995