oleander wrote:"The Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne was not possible until late July - August this last year"
Not true. We went through on July 15 this year. The water runoff had already reduced to a level that made the stream crossings safe. And, as you say, this was about the highest snow year on record. So, I'd say in 95% of years, you could get through here on July 4.
Did you provide a report to the rangers that it was possible? That's not what they were saying. While they do tend to be cautionary they don't typically tell people something isn't possible.
Perhaps you should elaborate too on what the trail was like - not everyone likes that one section where early in the melt you have to wade calf deep in snowmelt water and mud. Couple of friends turned back and got a different permit rather than wade.
My trips down the GCT have been later in the year, and the only concern after the water's dropped is doing the exposed switchbacks up from Pate to WW in the early morning, so you don't die of heat on the granite.