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backpack late season in fall

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Re: backpack late season in fall

Postby balance » Fri Sep 18, 2015 7:29 pm

Personal preference when travelling solo:

August is my favorite time in the Sierra for a seven or eight day trip. September is good. October is sketchy, but with planning and caution four or five days is definitely doable. "Indian Summer" in the Sierra Nevada has a special, peaceful quality. I don't like to be too far in or have to contend with high passes in October. I've always been comfortable with snow, or at least managed it well. Cold rain up above treeline is scary any time of the year.

I've done four day snowshoe trips solo getting up above 10,000 ft. in January. No GPS. Usually trails with blazes or very obvious navigation features. Winter is actually easier to plan for than October, because you know what to expect, don't intend to travel a great distance, and pack accordingly. As the years go on, winter is beginning to seem more like work and less like recreation. And I don't have that extra energy reserve to get through a tough spot if necessary. I may adjust my winter trips to going with a group.

Peace.



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Re: backpack late season in fall

Postby giantbrookie » Fri Sep 18, 2015 9:23 pm

I happen to have similar sentiments about fall hiking in the High Sierra. I know too many people who've had unpleasant to iffy experiences deep in the backcountry in fall. I do like being up there in the fall, because of the superb fishing (fall turnover), lack of mosquitoes (because I'm a mosquito magnet), and the fall colors. Accordingly, during the peak of my High Sierra hiking/fishing years (say 1991-2000)Judy and I would do our adventurous and longer backpacks in the genuine "High Sierra" (which I think of as being btw Tower Pk and Cirque Peak in latitude) during the summer months, but target the northern Sierra exclusively late Sept thru early November (depending on the year; sometimes the "shut down" storm would be mid-late Oct) because nothing in the N Sierra is very far from a trailhead. With the short days and cold nights we just didn't want to get too deep into the backcountry at that time of year, plus with the big browns and brookies in their aggressive mode, we had every reason to head for the N Sierra where so many large fish were ready to smack our lures. With the short hiking distances for the N Sierra destinations, we wouldn't do too many backpacks--we commonly primitive car camped or "motel camped" (although we had some excellent short backpack trips--our 1997 3-day "Lunker Loop" in Deso comes to mind). I guess now that I'm a bit south along the W flank (after living in the Bay Area during the "peak" years) I'd add some of the west flank destinations in the true "High Sierra" as fair game for quick late trips (ie stuff up 41 and 168).
Since my fishing (etc.) website is still down, you can be distracted by geology stuff at: http://www.fresnostate.edu/csm/ees/facu ... ayshi.html
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Re: backpack late season in fall

Postby SSSdave » Mon Oct 19, 2015 1:14 pm

What just happened this month:

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=13643&p=102176#p102176

snippet 10/10/2015 NWS technical forecast

LONGER RANGE FORECAST SHOWS A POTENTIAL CHANGE IN THE PATTERN
WITH CPC`S 8 TO 14 DAY OUTLOOK FOR OCTOBER 26 TO NOVEMBER 1
INDICATES WETTER THAN NORMAL CONDITIONS. WILL BE INTERESTING TO
SEE IF THAT FORECAST HOLDS OVER THE NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS.
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Re: backpack late season in fall

Postby gabe&mel » Fri Nov 06, 2015 2:39 pm

Thanks SSSdave for spurring a very informative conversation, lots of really good information in this thread.

Gabe
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