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trans-sierra routes?

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trans-sierra routes?

Postby Fyrmin » Mon Jan 02, 2006 5:44 pm

I'd like to traverse the sierra in May...I'm curious about Bloody Canyon to Yosemite...and any info would be welcome. There's 8 of us going...I 'm hoping for a light snow year and need to put a vehicle at the end of the trail...possibly two of 'em. Any one got feedback? Fyrmin



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Postby Windwalker » Mon Jan 02, 2006 6:08 pm

Even in light snow years...May is pretty early for a trans-sierra hike.
Unless you are more of a mountaineer than a backpacker.
If you are skilled with ice axe and crampons...it would be a spectacular trip!
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trip..

Postby Fyrmin » Mon Jan 02, 2006 7:04 pm

Windwalker wrote:Even in light snow years...May is pretty early for a trans-sierra hike.
Unless you are more of a mountaineer than a backpacker.
If you are skilled with ice axe and crampons...it would be a spectacular trip!


We're looking at May 22nd after a couple of days at 7000 feet to acclimatize...I was hoping to hear from someone that had experienced this route but obviously, if conditions won't allow it, we'll do an alternate trip...Thanks for the response though. It's difficult to pick a good trip for this time of year...and I've wanted to do a pass crossing for some time now. Mark
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Postby Windwalker » Mon Jan 02, 2006 8:13 pm

Found it on my Topo program...are you planning on leaving from Walker Lake? Over Mono Pass? End where in Yosemite?... Yosemite Valley?
Never been over that route....It's not as high as I first thought, most trans-sierra hikes that I know of... take you up around 12K. Mono pass is more like 10,600' so it might be pretty easy on a low snow year.

The only trans-sierra hike that I have done was from Onion Valley to Roads End (Cedar Grove) via Kearsarge Pass (11,823')....probably the shortest trans-sierra hike there is.
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Postby SteveB » Mon Jan 02, 2006 10:53 pm

Might want to keep an eyeball on the snow levels for this season. They're starting to pile up in some places:

http://cdec.water.ca.gov/cgi-progs/reports/PAGE6.html
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walker lake...and up!

Postby Fyrmin » Tue Jan 03, 2006 2:51 pm

Yeah...out of walker lake then over Mono Pass to Lyell canyon...ending at Tuolumne Meadows...not a lot of distance, but meets our objective of crossing a Sierra Pass... First 3 miles are calf and thigh exercises.
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Postby JM21760 » Tue Jan 03, 2006 3:21 pm

I'm guessing, but from the way this winter is shaping up, any backpacking done in May is going to involve a lot of snow time. I've done trips on Memorial Day a few times, and were sleeping on snow. We just figure it's late season snow camping, and travel with the appropriate gear. Skis might be handy, (hint, hint).
Last edited by JM21760 on Tue Jan 03, 2006 3:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Hikin Mike » Tue Jan 03, 2006 3:31 pm

FWIW, I've been to the Chilnualna Falls area twice on Memorial weekend and both trips I've run into snow near the top of the falls (~6500').
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May Traverse

Postby gdurkee » Thu Jan 05, 2006 8:18 pm

At first I thought you meant a ski traverse and I thought, "hmmm, might work." But apparently you want to hike it. As most people seem to agree, it's real unlikely to work without a huge amount of thrashing through snow and a fair amount of high water crossings (depending on your route). It would only be in a drought year that it might work. An "average" or above average year you'd be better off on skis or snow shoes (and then you'd have to contend with sun cups).

So anyway, you'd be better off looking for something lower elevation -- probably no higher than 6,000 feet, though maybe a thrash to 8,000 for a base camp, but unlikely you'd want to travel extensively above 8,000 at most.

Good luck.

George
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Postby JM21760 » Thu Jan 05, 2006 9:30 pm

Yeah, when I hear Trans Sierra, I think of a ski trip. A mini expidition. Thrashing through snow, post holing (sp?) for miles, or even a hundred yards, is a torture no one deserves. On the other hand, skiing with a full pack through sun cups, "Whappity, whappity, whap, crunch!" Maybe wait until July?
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