Some Eastern Sierra Closures through June

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schmalz
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Re: Some Eastern Sierra Closures through June

Post by schmalz » Sat May 16, 2020 5:47 pm

I’m expecting walk up permits to not be issued this year. I typically only use walk in permits. I just booked a summers worth of permit reservations as I expect them to disappear like toilet paper come June.


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Re: Some Eastern Sierra Closures through June

Post by SirBC » Sat May 16, 2020 6:33 pm

SEKI has said they won't be doing walk-up permits this year and will be mailing reserved permits. I guess (?) that means they will be releasing those permits reserved for walk-up to the general permits. I'd bet Inyo will follow that as well. That's a bummer, I pretty much never reserve in advance and like to head out when the weather looks good. Oh well.
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Re: Some Eastern Sierra Closures through June

Post by schmalz » Sat May 16, 2020 6:38 pm

SirBC wrote:
Sat May 16, 2020 6:33 pm
SEKI has said they won't be doing walk-up permits this year and will be mailing reserved permits. I guess (?) that means they will be releasing those permits reserved for walk-up to the general permits. I'd bet Inyo will follow that as well. That's a bummer, I pretty much never reserve in advance and like to head out when the weather looks good. Oh well.
I expect the walk in allotment will not be added to the reservable stock. They want to keep numbers low and this is an easy, built in way to achieve that.
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Re: Some Eastern Sierra Closures through June

Post by dougieb » Sat May 16, 2020 6:55 pm

Got this on Friday from SEKI

"Greetings from Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks,

You are receiving this message because your email address is associated with a 2020 wilderness permit reservation. We hope it finds you and your families and friends healthy.

Significant changes are being made for the 2020 wilderness permit quota season (May 22, 2020 to September 19, 2020) in accordance with CDC, state, and local public health guidance related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

At this time, front-country access to wilderness trailheads in Sequoia and Kings Canyon is delayed at least through May 31, 2020. Reservations with an entry date prior to June 1st have been canceled and issued a full refund. This may be extended or modified as updated guidance is received. Please refer to the current conditions page for a list of accessible areas and available facilities and services.

When overnight wilderness trips resume, wilderness permits will be still be required. Our quota system remains in place, limiting the number of people entering the wilderness each day, from each trailhead, in accordance with the parks’ Wilderness Stewardship Plan. In order to comply with CDC guidelines and maintain social distancing, all wilderness permits will be issued remotely, by phone and email. Consequently, advance reservations are required for all wilderness permits in the 2020 season. No walk-up permits will be issued. The Lakes Trail, previously walk-up permits only, is available for reservation with a limited quota. Your existing reservation will not be cancelled unless the area remains closed at the time of entry or you contact us. For more information about the process for obtaining a wilderness permit this summer, please visit the parks’ permits website.

With reduced services in the parks, it is particularly important that visitors plan ahead and arrive prepared for their trip. Rangers are not available to answer questions at the trailhead. Animal resistant food storage containers (bear canisters) are still required in most of the park, but may not be available for rental. Visitors should rent or buy an appropriate food storage container before arriving in the park."

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Re: Some Eastern Sierra Closures through June

Post by wildhiker » Sat May 16, 2020 11:19 pm

The most recent posts in the Wilderness Permit Information thread (viewtopic.php?f=1&t=14947&start=80) say that SEKI permits will be by reservation only this summer - no walkups at all. I suspect the entire Sierra wildernesses will end up this way this summer - reservation only. This is to protect the employees and volunteers who normally staff the visitor centers. Personally, I've only gotten a reservation a few times in more than 40 years. That's because I like to be flexible and take current conditions (weather, snowmelt, smoke from fires, mosquitoes, etc) into account before selecting a location to backpack. So like WD, I will sorely miss walk-up permits. Especially because if all permits are reservation only, I predict they will quickly all be reserved by people "just in case" and many will go unused after all, with no opportunity to be re-assigned.
-Phil

PS - In the last few years, I've noticed that the Yosemite permit offices skip "the lecture" after they notice my extensive history of permits in their computer system.

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Re: Some Eastern Sierra Closures through June

Post by TurboHike » Sun May 17, 2020 5:58 am

More detail here on the new process for SEKI: https://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/ ... ermits.htm

The "lecture" will be done over the phone, click the link and go to step 4.

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Re: Some Eastern Sierra Closures through June

Post by dougieb » Sun May 17, 2020 7:18 am

I appreciate the intent of the "lecture" and its importance for new backpackers and the health of the parks. However, when you've been on 50 trips, is it fair to say, "I get it, can we skip this?" Maybe not in those words but...

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Re: Some Eastern Sierra Closures through June

Post by CAMERONM » Sun May 17, 2020 7:29 am

Especially because if all permits are reservation only, I predict they will quickly all be reserved by people "just in case" and many will go unused after all, with no opportunity to be re-assigned.
For sure.

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Re: Some Eastern Sierra Closures through June

Post by Lumbergh21 » Sun May 17, 2020 9:02 am

wildhiker wrote:
Sat May 16, 2020 11:19 pm
Especially because if all permits are reservation only, I predict they will quickly all be reserved by people "just in case" and many will go unused after all, with no opportunity to be re-assigned.
-Phil
I'm certainly guilty of that this year, in the sense that I reserved a permit for two even though I didn't have second person committed to the trip at that time, but with the SARS CoV-2 scare, I'm pretty sure that I'll be going alone. At least I hope that Inyo follows SEKI's lead and issues permits by email with the lecture over the phone and doesn't just declare Inyo closed to the public until further notice.

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Re: Some Eastern Sierra Closures through June

Post by Wandering Daisy » Sun May 17, 2020 9:54 am

Permit hording, just like TP hording. I see it coming. :(

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