TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision | High Sierra Topix  

TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

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TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby quentinc » Thu May 31, 2012 10:00 pm

After marveling about how my trip to Miter Basin and Langley over the previous weekend (May 19 - 21) felt like mid-July, this trip started out feeling like mid-April.

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That's Charlotte Dome, taken from the JMT heading into the bowl below Glen Pass

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That's somewhere below Glen Pass, but just where is anyone's guess. Anyway, the prior weekend, when I arrived at Horseshoe Meadow in the morning, it was 60. Last Saturday, it was 30 when I got to Onion Valley, and got progressively colder as I hiked up to Kearsarge Pass. It was the first time I can remember my mustache freezing since I attended college in New Jersey!

This is the Glen Pass bowl the next morning:

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I was hoping to make it over Glen Pass the first day, but I ran into a group that just came south over it, and they were claiming there was 2 feet of snow at the top and, anyway, I wouldn't have been able to make it down to Rae Lakes before dark. It was really slow going hiking over granite steps covered with snow (as I always say, there's nothing more dangerous than a trail). Then, the next morning I decided I still didn't need to deal with snow -- I'd just turn around and head the other direction on the JMT. I thought about going into Center Basin, but instead headed up towards Forester Pass.

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That's Junction Peak in the center.

There were two large snow fields just before Forester Pass, and then I decided I didn't need to go through those either (the pass is at the center of the photo):

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There were some rather Arctic looking scenes below the pass:

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So I came back down to about 11,200 and camped near the pond on the large flat area at the top of tree line. A strange fog came through at sunset, that made me think I was still in L.A. (near the beach):

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On the 3d and last day, I detoured around the Kearsarge Lakes, which really are quite lovely when no one is there. This is the lake above the 3 main Kearsarge Lakes, with University Peak in the background:

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The Kearsarge Pinnacles:

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And, finally, East Vidette, taken from Bullfrog Lake, and then a wider panorama from the a slightly different vantage point:

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Re: TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby amaxoxo » Thu May 31, 2012 11:05 pm

Weird weather, beautiful photos! I was there last August and went over Forrester Pass and it looked much the same then after that heavy snow year. Your photos bring back memories, especially the weird fog at the flat area below Forrester Pass, and the beautiful light. Thanks for the photos and description!
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TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby Bluewater » Fri Jun 01, 2012 8:53 pm

Thank you for posting your trip report. The pxts are beautiful. I hiked thru that area last Sept. and it looked very different in the late season.

I really appreciate your photos. Did you use a DSLR?
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Re: TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby quentinc » Sat Jun 02, 2012 8:26 am

Thanks folks. Bluewater: no, I'm strictly a point & shoot guy with a basic Lumix model, but thanks for asking!
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Re: TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby maverick » Sat Jun 02, 2012 8:55 am

Very nice Q. "It was the first time I can remember my mustache freezing since I attended
college in New Jersey!" now that is pretty cold.
Really like the Junction Peak, and Kearsarge Pinnacles shot.
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TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby Bluewater » Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:20 am

Thanks for the camera info quentinc. Amazing clarity for a point & shoot.
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Re: TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby cvr » Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:23 am

I'll second the "Thanks for the report". I am planning my location for a trip over next weekend, plus a few days and your TR and great pics have given me a great idea of the conditions around one of the potential targets. Even with the low snow year, it is still a bit early to get too high. As you said, it must have been nice to be alone at Kearsarge Lakes. I can't say I have ever experienced any semblance of solutide in that basin.
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Re: TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby windknot » Sat Jun 02, 2012 6:06 pm

Looks like a great trip, thanks for sharing.
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TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby bheiser1 » Sat Jun 02, 2012 8:24 pm

Here's another thank you for posting this report and the pics. For me this brought back the, umm, pinnacle, of my trips last summer - up to that same area via Kearsarge Pass, minus the detour toward Glen Pass. That's an awesome area.

Thanks again!
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Re: TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby sparky » Wed Jun 06, 2012 8:35 pm

That photo from the uppermost kearsage lake of university peak.....10th picture down.....the low point of the north ridge slightly up and right of photo center. Anyone know anything about this notch, or have better pictures?
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Re: TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby richlong8 » Thu Jun 07, 2012 7:15 am

Those conditions were rough, but they sure make for more interesting photos than when it is all dried up. Thanks for sharing.
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Re: TR -- 5/26 - 5/28 -- Kearsarge, snow and indecision

Postby kpeter » Thu Jun 07, 2012 7:57 am

Magnificent!
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