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Crossing Middle Fork Kings River at Simpson Meadow

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Crossing Middle Fork Kings River at Simpson Meadow

Postby tomkirchner » Mon Feb 04, 2013 5:28 pm

HI Folks,

I'm in the planning stage for a trip this summer that will require crossing the Middle Fork KR at Simpson Meadow. It would be helpful to know if crossing is by bridge, log, or feet wet, as that will have a bearing on when I do the trip.

Any information will be greatly appreciated.

Thank you

Tom



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Re: Crossing Middle Fork Kings River at Simpson Meadow

Postby lostcoyote » Mon Feb 04, 2013 5:37 pm

wet feet.

best to go late season, imo.

no bridge. washed out many moons ago.

i crossed in september 2010 (a dry year) and was knee deep. the rocks on the bottom had some algea on them and so they were somewhat slippery. i had a ski pole to help keep from slipping and planted my feet between rocks to keep from slipping if i would step on top of one.

my point of crossing was just upstream of simpson meadow... where the north side trail peters out if headed upstream.
Last edited by lostcoyote on Mon Feb 04, 2013 9:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Crossing Middle Fork Kings River at Simpson Meadow

Postby Mike M. » Mon Feb 04, 2013 6:07 pm

Many, many years ago there was a bridge. It was washed out in the 70's and never replaced.

I assume early season crossings would be treacherous. Later in the season, you'll have water up to your waist. Wear your boots (you don't want to turn your ankle or lose your footing), find a stretch of river where the river is spread out and the flow is rapid, and stuff your clothes and sleeping bag in a garbage bag so they don't get wet. There is a good place to cross near where Goddard Creek meets the river.

Mike
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Re: Crossing Middle Fork Kings River at Simpson Meadow

Postby TehipiteTom » Mon Feb 04, 2013 6:11 pm

I'll second Mike's caution about early-season crossings.

I crossed in mid-August 1999 (a fairly "normal" snowpack year, IIRC) and it was knee-deep on me (6'2"). Just one data point.
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Re: Crossing Middle Fork Kings River at Simpson Meadow

Postby maverick » Mon Feb 04, 2013 6:44 pm

Hi Tom,

Welcome to HST! As others noted later in the season is best, though in a light snow
year one can go a little earlier, but still should be attempted with extreme caution.
A great refresher thread on this subject: http://www.highsierratopix.com/communit ... =34&t=6043
HST= Wilderness Adventurer who knows no bounds, except for their own imagination.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org
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Re: Crossing Middle Fork Kings River at Simpson Meadow

Postby lambertiana » Mon Feb 04, 2013 9:05 pm

When I crossed in mid-August 2007 (low snow year) it was only knee deep. I don't know if I crossed where everyone else does. I just followed the "trail" from Tehipite until it ended at the edge of the Kings in the Simpson area. Past that point it just petered out and completely disappeared, so I figured I had to go back to the last place the trail was obvious and cross there; it was wide and gravel-bottomed and easy to cross. After crossing I was in a broad grassy area where I saw hoof prints so from there I just headed south until I found the trail that comes down from Granite Pass.

This was a little below where Goddard Creek meets the Kings.
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Re: Crossing Middle Fork Kings River at Simpson Meadow

Postby Hobbes » Tue Feb 05, 2013 9:21 am

tomkirchner wrote:I'm in the planning stage for a trip this summer that will require crossing the Middle Fork KR at Simpson Meadow.


Hey Tom, glad to see you found HST. How are you planning on getting to Simpson Mdw?

For everyone else, Tom is sort of a legend. Do yourself a favor and read this most excellent trip report from a few years ago:

http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin ... d_id=59389
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Re: Crossing Middle Fork Kings River at Simpson Meadow

Postby Kelbaker » Tue Feb 05, 2013 12:57 pm

When I was there in Aug 2005, I came down Goddard Creek to Simpson Meadow and then down the Middle Fork. I am glad I did not have to cross because the water was deep and moving fast. This was a wet year with a lot of snow still in the high country.
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Re: Crossing Middle Fork Kings River at Simpson Meadow

Postby tomkirchner » Wed Feb 06, 2013 8:47 pm

Many thanks to all for your informative responses, which have given me everything I need to set my trip departure time frame. September it shall be. The crossing sounds pretty reasonable.

Tom
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