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Comparing Kibbie Ridge melt-out dates

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Comparing Kibbie Ridge melt-out dates

Postby kpeter » Sat Apr 28, 2012 7:16 am

Looking back at the last 6 years, I've identified the date at which the "Water Content" at the Kibbie Ridge sensor first fell below 1". In 2007 there were some late season storms that temporarily lifted it back up, but I went with the first melt-out date. For what it is worth, here are the dates:

2012 April 24
2011 June 9
2010 June 1
2009 April 30
2008 May 5
2007 April 2

I've only hiked in this vicinity in 2011 and 2010 and so I imagine that a June trip in NW Yosemite is going to be a very different experience this year--a lot more like 2007 and 2008 and 2009. I'll plan to go in the last week of May and hope for conditions approximating my last two trips that were in the 3rd week of June.

By the way, here are the equivalent melt-out dates for White Wolf:

2012 April 30
2011 June 22
2010 June 13
2009 May 15
2008 May 12
2007 no data
Last edited by kpeter on Mon Apr 30, 2012 8:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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Re: Comparing Kibbie Ridge melt-out dates

Postby oldranger » Sat Apr 28, 2012 10:24 am

kpeter

To give you an idea of what that snow sensor data means on the ground I'll describe the conditions I encountered at whitewolf on Memorial Day 2009. South of the Tioga Pass road (n. Slope) at the intersection of the spur to White Wolf there was about 25% snowcover with some of the patches as much as 3 ft. deep. At the lodge area there were a few scattered patches in some shady areas with less than 2% snowcover. The river in Pate valley was high but the trail after the first bridge was only flooded a little and I could walk on the rocks bordering the trail without getting my feet wet. 6 days later the river was down considerably with just a little water in the trail. Up in Pleasant Valley Piute Creek was running fast and furious and the ford was not fordable. However there was a large logjam a couple of hundred yards downstream a piece of cake. After last year's high water the log jam may be gone or even larger. Mosquitos were noticeble in Pleasant valley but not bad otherwise as I recall.

Mike
Last edited by oldranger on Sun Apr 29, 2012 12:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Comparing Kibbie Ridge melt-out dates

Postby kpeter » Sun Apr 29, 2012 7:47 am

Thank you! That is very helpful. That on-the-ground perspective will help me pick the week much more effectively.
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Re: Comparing Kibbie Ridge melt-out dates

Postby oldranger » Sun Apr 29, 2012 12:35 pm

Since I'm planning on s yosemite early season trip (May 21 or 22)I have been paying attention to the Ostrander sensor. Looking thru past records it seems that 2004 is closest to snow water content with this year at about 10" per yesterdays date. The sensor zero'd out about May 7 back then which seems a bit quick but I would be happy with that this year as a significant portion of my trip will be 1,000 higher than Ostrander. I am expecting to deal with snow on n. slopes and two significant creek crossings. Hopefully I can find a broad spot in a meadow or a nice substantial log or logjam not too far from the trail crossings. It was also interesting to note that while High temps in 2004 reached into the low 60's one or two days there was at least one day when the temp did not exceed high 30's, most were in the 40s and low 50s. On the other hand lows were generally in the high 30s to low 40s. Might mean a fair amount of cloud cover that year. What it means to me is bring my sept. clothing--extra light long underwear, one extra layer for upper body, and extra layer of head cover. Another issue is which TH to access--Quartz Mt or Chiquito CG. Quartz is 800 ft higher and 2 less miles hike. Because the Quartz road crosses some fairly steep n. slopes access is problematic.

Mike
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Re: Comparing Kibbie Ridge melt-out dates

Postby kpeter » Mon Apr 30, 2012 8:32 pm

White Wolf just melted out today, putting it two weeks ahead of the 2009 pace. As for southern Yosemite, here are the comparative dates for Ostrander:

Ostrander Sensor melt-out dates (first date of <1" water content)
2012 May 9
2011 June 26
2010 June 15
2009 May 21
2008 May 17
2007 May 10
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