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Fast & Light on HST to Big Arroyo late Jul/early Aug

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Re: Fast & Light on HST to Big Arroyo late Jul/early Aug

Postby franklin411 » Fri May 20, 2016 8:41 pm

I went to Big Arroyo via the HST 3 years ago. I'm in shape and generally do fine hiking all day with minimal stops (dayhiked from Horseshoe Meadow to Mt. Langley in 12 hrs last year), and I wouldn't want to go to Big Arroyo in one day. I was the first person at the permit office when it opened at 7 AM, and it still took me an hour+ to get my permit, use the restroom (last chance) and drive to the trailhead. I got to Hamilton Lake around 3-4 PM and camped there. The next morning it took me 4 hrs to get to Big Arroyo.

Maybe it was the season. I was there in late September, and the heat really sucked a lot out of me between Bearpaw and Hamilton Lakes. That stretch is in full sun. Ditto the section from Hamilton to Big Arroyo. Even without my sweat-o-rama, though, I don't think it would have been much fun to cover that ground in one 12-14 hour day. I wouldn't have wanted to get to Big Arroyo in one day and have to set up camp + take care of all those camp chores in the dark.

To be honest, I bugged out at Big Arroyo. It was noon, I was too lonely, and I couldn't find the old ranger cabin/bear box/trail junction that's supposed to be there. Again, this was at noon, with full sunlight. Wouldn't want to have to choose between searching in the dark for a bear box that may or may not be right behind the next bush, and storing my food in an unsafe manner.

Wandering Daisy's right. Wayyy better to camp at Hamilton Lakes and dayhike to the Gap or that area. For one thing...one BIG thing: Hamilton Lakes is a lot more comfortable. You have lots of bear boxes, you have a privy which is a damn sight better than pooping over a hole, and you have company. Even if you like solitude, you have to factor in that you're alone and all those other annoying backpackers could very well save your life in an emergency.



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Re: Fast & Light on HST to Big Arroyo late Jul/early Aug

Postby psykokid » Wed Jun 01, 2016 4:06 pm

So I went through and put all my stuff into a spreadsheet to see how much weight I'm looking at carrying. Without food, water and extra clothes I'm sitting just under 9 lbs. If I can fit a small bear can like a BV450 or a Bearikade Scout into my pack I may take the hit weight wise to open up my options as to where I can camp.

weights.jpg


As far as training for this hike goes, I've been out on two longer hikes the last two weekends with my pack loaded with extra water and stuff to bring the weight up to around 10 lbs give or take.
-On the 21st I hiked from Dawson Saddle to Mount Baden-Powell which was 10 miles with 3200' of overall elevation gain/loss starting at 7900' and topping out at 9400' with a lot of up and down in between including 2 other 9K peaks besides BP. Took 5 hours total, but I was hiking with a friend who was breaking in new boots and trying out a new pack and his pace is quite a bit slower than mine.
-On Memorial Day I got up early and hiked up the Devils Backbone trail to Mt. Baldy and descended the Baldy Bowl trail. Added in Harwood and West Baldy for some extra distance and elevation gain/loss. Stats for that one was 12 miles with 4500' of overall elevation gain/loss in 4 hours. 6100' starting elevation and topping out at 10046'

The longer hikes on the weekend are in addition to my M-F workout in the gym and my 3X weekly 6 mile morning hike on the Mt. Wilson trail. There's 2250' of elevation gain/loss over the course of that one.

So right now I'm feeling pretty good. Even after coming down the Baldy Bowl trail on Monday (which is a pretty steep decent) I don't have any of the soreness that I used to get in my thighs and calves two days after doing a longer hike. Going to start adding a few more miles to my weekend hikes so I'm up to 16-18 miles in a day without feeling wasted the next day.

Right now I've got this on the books for the last weekend of July. Going to take off from work in the afternoon on Thursday the 28th and make the drive up. I have a site reserved at the Lodgepole campground for that night, on the first loop closest to the Visitor Center so I can stroll over first thing when I wake up so I can get in line before they open and score a walkup permit. Thinking Alta TH will be my first choice with Crescent Meadow being my second.
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Re: Fast & Light on HST to Big Arroyo late Jul/early Aug

Postby psykokid » Mon Jul 18, 2016 2:09 pm

Well, may have hit a snag on this one as my wife has suddenly gotten paranoid and is insisting that I go with someone. Been asking around to my friends and no one is available that weekend. It's not like I'll be out there all by myself as the HST is pretty popular this time of year, but alas - simply other people being in the same neck of the woods at the same time isn't cutting the mustard for her. Dunno - needless to say I'm a bit gutted at the prospect of missing this trip if I cant find someone to tag along with me as I've been mentally planning this out since last fall and have put a lot of miles in on trail to get in shape for the last few months.
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Re: Fast & Light on HST to Big Arroyo late Jul/early Aug

Postby maverick » Mon Jul 18, 2016 2:34 pm

Fill out one the HST ReConn Forms completely and see if she will let you go.
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
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Re: Fast & Light on HST to Big Arroyo late Jul/early Aug

Postby psykokid » Mon Jul 18, 2016 3:08 pm

maverick wrote:Fill out one the HST ReConn Forms completely and see if she will let you go.


I'll give it a shot, can't hurt at this point. I'm pretty meticulous when I got out on a trip giving her an itinerary, map, camp locations, possible detours, etc.. I also carry a SPOT when I'm out off the grid so she can see how I'm progressing. \

She's got a big worry streak that seems to manifest itself at the least opportune moments..
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