Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question | High Sierra Topix  

Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

If you've been searching for the best source of information and stimulating discussion related to Spring/Summer/Fall backpacking, hiking and camping in the Sierra Nevada...look no further!
User avatar

Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby schmalz » Mon Aug 10, 2015 3:06 pm

Hey HST,

In typical fashion, I'm considering altering my plans for my september trip and doing a shorter but route near the Minarets. I have never hiked near Minaret/Cecile Lake, but I have hiked part of the boulder field between Iceberg and Cecile.

I'll have my dog with me so I'm a bit concerned about this part of the route I am considering. Specifically, I remember reading that there is a brief class 3 section between Cecile and Minaret? I'm not worried about the boulder field, but I am worried about hitting one small insurmountable obstacle that I can't surmount with my dog, such as a small 10 foot class 3 section. Is it doable? Do I need to seek a specific alternate route?

Also, which is better for camping? Cecile or Minaret? Thanks.



User avatar
schmalz
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 460
Joined: Fri May 07, 2010 9:18 am
Location: Altadena, CA
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby oleander » Mon Aug 10, 2015 4:56 pm

Brian,

I have been from Minaret to Cecile Lake twice. I took two somewhat different routes and both times, completely avoided any Class 3, without a lot of difficulty.

The Class 3 section, I believe, the one in Secor/Roper, is kind of a more western route, that follows more closely a major stream/canyon that flows into Minaret Lake from the north/northwest.

By starting up more from the east, you can kind of just climb up and over a hill/hump and end up at Cecile Lake pretty easily.

I took someone up there who hadn't even done Class 2 before, and she was fine.

Maybe someone who's been there more recently can remember where exactly to start up. But you'll figure it out anyway. Just wander up where it doesn't look too bad. This may be *considerably* east of the Secor creek. Somewhere around the NE corner of Minaret Lake. It looked to me like there could be 3-5 various routes.

For the dog, my concern would be that the metamorphic rock of the Ritter Range would be harder on his paws than the usual granite destinations.

- Elizabeth
User avatar
oleander
Topix Regular
 
Posts: 325
Joined: Wed Aug 18, 2010 10:15 am
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby schmalz » Mon Aug 10, 2015 5:06 pm

oleander wrote:Brian,

I have been from Minaret to Cecile Lake twice. I took two somewhat different routes and both times, completely avoided any Class 3, without a lot of difficulty.

The Class 3 section, I believe, the one in Secor/Roper, is kind of a more western route, that follows more closely a major stream/canyon that flows into Minaret Lake from the north/northwest.

By starting up more from the east, you can kind of just climb up and over a hill/hump and end up at Cecile Lake pretty easily.

I took someone up there who hadn't even done Class 2 before, and she was fine.

Maybe someone who's been there more recently can remember where exactly to start up. But you'll figure it out anyway. Just wander up where it doesn't look too bad. This may be *considerably* east of the Secor creek. Somewhere around the NE corner of Minaret Lake. It looked to me like there could be 3-5 various routes.

For the dog, my concern would be that the metamorphic rock of the Ritter Range would be harder on his paws than the usual granite destinations.

- Elizabeth


Thanks Liz. There is a lot of good info in there and it's good to know there are various options. Sounds totally doable.

I also appreciate your sentiment regarding my dog's pads. It's always a concern. We just did a series of days offtrail in Emigrant and she seemed to be choosing where she put her feet more cautiously at the end of it. One of the advantages of the area is that each offtrail section ends at a trail that we could hike out of, so there isn't much risk in getting caught in the backcountry with no easy way out as there is with some other routes (like the one we did in Emigrant).

I did have Callie hike halfway up the boulder field between Iceberg and Cecile, and then hike back down with me, so she has basically covered that stretch before without any issue. Hopefully we'll be fine. We'd also be tackling Nancy Pass, Nydiver, and possibly the offtrail between Nydiver and Garnett.
User avatar
schmalz
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 460
Joined: Fri May 07, 2010 9:18 am
Location: Altadena, CA
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby Sierra Miguel » Sat Aug 15, 2015 10:16 pm

schmalz wrote:I remember reading that there is a brief class 3 section between Cecile and Minaret? I'm not worried about the boulder field, but I am worried about hitting one small insurmountable obstacle that I can't surmount with my dog, such as a small 10 foot class 3 section. Is it doable? Do I need to seek a specific alternate route?

I've mentioned that previously, with a possible alternate. The Roper route isn't possible with a dog.

which is better for camping? Cecile or Minaret?

I prefer the west shore of Minaret. I think there's more room down there, too.

I did have Callie hike halfway up the boulder field between Iceberg and Cecile

The second half is steeper.

We'd also be tackling Nancy Pass

Little bit of bushwhack on the middle of the south side.
User avatar
Sierra Miguel
Topix Acquainted
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2014 10:15 pm
Location: Berkeley, CA, US
Experience: Level 3 Backpacker

User avatar

Re: Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby Wandering Daisy » Sun Aug 16, 2015 10:22 am

I would not be concerned about your dog on any one of those off-trail sections, but put it all together and I know my dog would have very sore paws (but my dog is a bit of a "princess"). It may depend on how much off-trail you intend to do each day. The metamorphic rock up there is pretty sharp and the black rock can get really hot- may be just as much a problem with burning paws as being rough. And you have almost all rock to get around Cecile Lake. If you dog is OK with booties, I would put them on him at least part of the day just as a preventative measure.

The "non-Secor" route is quite easy. As you near the south end of Cecile Lake, go over the saddle (an old burned area here) that drops slightly toward a pond (not sure if that pond still would have water now, but you will see it obviously is or was a pond). Circle right of the pond for a short distance, turn sharply right and go through a small "pass". At this "pass" you will see a well-used trail that steeply descends and joins the better trail about half way between the "Secor pass" and Minaret Lake.

The south side of Nancy Pass has a lot of scree. I may have missed the best route, but I thought it was quite difficult and rocky. I recall a good piece on the internet that describes the best route. Google "nancy pass" and you may find this article.
User avatar
Wandering Daisy
Topix Junkie
 
Posts: 2610
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 8:19 pm
Location: Fair Oaks CA (Sacramento area)
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby schmalz » Sun Aug 16, 2015 12:15 pm

Wandering Daisy wrote:I would not be concerned about your dog on any one of those off-trail sections, but put it all together and I know my dog would have very sore paws (but my dog is a bit of a "princess"). It may depend on how much off-trail you intend to do each day. The metamorphic rock up there is pretty sharp and the black rock can get really hot- may be just as much a problem with burning paws as being rough.


Yeah, I have similar concerns. Part of the appeal of the route is that after each off-trail section, we have have access to a trail that will lead us back to the car in only a few miles. So, I'll be monitoring her paws and we'll make adjustments as needed. By the time we get to Iceberg Lake she might be done.
User avatar
schmalz
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 460
Joined: Fri May 07, 2010 9:18 am
Location: Altadena, CA
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby Heyworth » Mon Aug 17, 2015 3:59 pm

I'll have my dog with me so I'm a bit concerned about this part of the route I am considering. Specifically, I remember reading that there is a brief class 3 section between Cecile and Minaret? I'm not worried about the boulder field, but I am worried about hitting one small insurmountable obstacle that I can't surmount with my dog, such as a small 10 foot class 3 section.
Not ten feet. More like six or so.
User avatar
Heyworth
Topix Novice
 
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri May 13, 2011 5:04 pm
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby maverick » Mon Aug 17, 2015 5:04 pm

You should be okay Schmalz, just take your time in finding a route most acceptable for Callie, there are a few, just stay away from the middle route which is class 3 in the the middle section. Camping at Minaret Lakes is much better, and the morning sunrise views are outstanding, Cecile has some small, less attractive campsites on the southeastern end, right near the area you climb up from the Minaret Lakes area, near the Cecile shoreline.
HST= Wilderness Adventurer who knows no bounds, except for their own imagination.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org
User avatar
maverick
Forums Moderator
Forums Moderator
 
Posts: 8050
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 5:54 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby BigMan » Mon Aug 17, 2015 6:51 pm

If I thought I might have to sacrifice part of this off-trail route, I'd consider skipping Nancy Pass altogether. Not a big bang for the buck, imo. Just my 2 cents. Have fun.
In wilderness lies the hope of the world.
User avatar
BigMan
Topix Acquainted
 
Posts: 82
Joined: Wed May 30, 2012 2:17 pm
Location: San Jose, CA
Experience: Level 3 Backpacker

User avatar

Re: Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby maverick » Mon Aug 17, 2015 7:08 pm

I'd consider skipping Nancy Pass altogether


The views from the top of Nancy is great looking back towards Iron Mountain and Ashley Lake.
HST= Wilderness Adventurer who knows no bounds, except for their own imagination.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org
User avatar
maverick
Forums Moderator
Forums Moderator
 
Posts: 8050
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 5:54 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby schmalz » Mon Aug 17, 2015 7:11 pm

Yeah, I am strongly considering skipping Nancy Pass. I could do the Ashley Lake loop as a day hike circuit on the day before or after the trip, or just save it for another weekend backpacking trip. Trying to do Nancy > Iceberg > a day of off trail helping with the Matt Greene search > Whitebark is probably too much for Callie.
User avatar
schmalz
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 460
Joined: Fri May 07, 2010 9:18 am
Location: Altadena, CA
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

User avatar

Re: Minaret - Cecile - Iceberg Route Question

Postby Sierra Miguel » Tue Aug 18, 2015 1:36 am

maverick wrote:Camping at Minaret Lakes is much better, and the morning sunrise views are outstanding

Moonrise, too. Viewed from the west side, at least.
User avatar
Sierra Miguel
Topix Acquainted
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2014 10:15 pm
Location: Berkeley, CA, US
Experience: Level 3 Backpacker


Return to Backpacking / Hiking / Camping



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests