Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights | High Sierra Topix  

Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights

If you've been searching for the best source of information and stimulating discussion related to Spring/Summer/Fall backpacking, hiking and camping in the Sierra Nevada...look no further!

Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights

Postby Barry » Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:06 pm

I am hoping to get some suggestions for a midJuly trip with around 20 boys.

Easy access from the South Bay is a plus. I first thought with this long planning horizon the Desolation Wilderness is perfect. A little research indicates I would need to split the group due to permitting rules and mosquitoes may be horrendous. We have a couple of kids that are very sensitive.

Any suggestions on where to go? We could stay in the Bay Area but are planning a 30 miler close to home over labor day weekend. This is part of the training.

Thanks



User avatar
Barry
Topix Novice
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2012 6:29 pm
Location: Los Gatos, CA and Incline Village, NV
Experience: N/A

Re: Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights

Postby Wandering Daisy » Tue Feb 12, 2013 7:29 am

Twenty kids plus adults to accompany them is a huge group. Even if you split into two permits, having that many people in the wilderness is the opposite of a wilderness experience. I strongly recommend you split the group and go to two separate places or take two trips at differnt times. I realize this is logistically hard, but I think it would be worth the effort (the adults will have to go out twice- well, great if I were to get to go out twice!). There are some non-wilderness places that do not have group size limits, but as a practical matter, most of those are in the foothills where there is a lot of undergrowth and I doubt you could find enough tent spaces to accomdate that large a group.
User avatar
Wandering Daisy
Topix Junkie
 
Posts: 3309
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 7:19 pm
Location: Fair Oaks CA (Sacramento area)
Experience: N/A

Re: Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights

Postby AlmostThere » Tue Feb 12, 2013 7:39 am

I would take them to Point Reyes. The limiting factor there is campsite capacity and they have camps that have a max of 25.
User avatar
AlmostThere
Topix Junkie
 
Posts: 2244
Joined: Wed Jun 24, 2009 3:38 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

Re: Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights

Postby DavePloessel » Tue Feb 12, 2013 7:56 am

perhaps something out of mineral king?

Daily quota from min king towards timber gap is 25 people per day... However, you'd still have to break it up into 2 groups of 15 or less people per permit... Bit of a drive too..

I think you'll run into issues with groups larger than 15 most places, with good reason, IMO. Most back country camp sites are not designed for and can't really handle that many people at one time and you will need to break the scouts up/disperse them when you camp anyways.

That being said, good for you for getting your scouts out there. Maybe I just belonged to a suckey Troop, but all we ever did was car camp :-({|=

If you want to stay coastal, the silver peak/ventana wilderness areas in los padres NF have some great backpacking, and even have hot springs you can hike in to.
User avatar
DavePloessel
Topix Acquainted
 
Posts: 81
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 8:53 am
Location: sandy eggo
Experience: N/A

Re: Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights

Postby maverick » Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:41 am

Hi Barry,

With your mosquito restrictions the Sierra is definitely out for July. Your group may
want to consider the Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail, Ventana Wilderness, Point Reyes, the
Ohlone Trail and Henry Coe will be to hot and dry by July. WD's suggestion about
breaking up the group is a good one since getting permits and finding a place that
can accommodate such a large group will be difficult.
I don't give out specific route information, my belief is that it takes away from the whole adventure spirit of a trip, if you need every inch planned out, you'll have to get that from someone else.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org
User avatar
maverick
Forums Moderator
Forums Moderator
 
Posts: 9331
Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 4:54 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

Re: Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights

Postby oldranger » Tue Feb 12, 2013 12:50 pm

Barry,

Please heed the advice of splitting groups. Furthermore please adhere to the spirit of the rule and not to the letter. How would you like to be a group of 2 people with a dozen scouts and leaders camped on each side of you resulting in 2 dozen people crisscrossing past your camp? Not exactly a wilderness expeience. Tehipite Tom and I experienced exactly that a couple years ago on the last night of a 3 night stay. They weren't rude or excessively noisey but certainly large groups have an impact on others experience.

As others have said, kudos for getting the kids out!

Mike
Mike

Who can't do everything he used to and what he can do takes a hell of a lot longer!
User avatar
oldranger
Topix Junkie
 
Posts: 2407
Joined: Fri Jan 19, 2007 8:18 pm
Location: Bend, Oregon
Experience: N/A

Re: Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights

Postby jimmeans » Tue Feb 12, 2013 7:53 pm

I don't remember where it was, but I once ran across a scout troup that solved this problem by splitting into two groups and starting at the opposite ends of a shuttle hike. They were meeting some where in the middle to exchange keys, etc.
User avatar
jimmeans
Topix Acquainted
 
Posts: 89
Joined: Fri May 28, 2010 5:47 am
Location: San Diego
Experience: Level 3 Backpacker

Re: Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights

Postby mokelumnekid » Tue Feb 12, 2013 11:25 pm

Hmmm...yeah mid-July is buggy most places. Here is one that can be done in three nights by kids of all ages, starts high and goes down hill the first day. It is in the Ebbetts Pass area where there is grazing, so impacts from people are not so much a worry. And the car shuttle is reasonably short and the drop off is on the drive in.

Drive to Highland Lakes (just west of Ebbetts Pass, serviced by a decent dirt and gravel road. Campgrounds but no services). Stay there for a night. next day, backpack *down* Highland Creek to Hiram Meadow or below. Camp there- very large meadow with old range cabin. Hike north out and up Weiser Creek trail until topping out at head of Marshall Canyon just east of Henry Peak, follow trail down into Pacific Valley where shuttle vehicle can be left on the way in.

One rub is that probably isn't 20 miles. Maybe start at Ebbetts Pass, hit the PCT to Highland Lakes then proceed as above. Lot's of possibilities. One thing is since there is a lot of volcanic rock in that area, there is more soil = lots of wild flowers.

Anyway just a thought.
User avatar
mokelumnekid
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 459
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2008 3:45 pm
Location: Seattle
Experience: N/A

Re: Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights

Postby Barry » Thu Feb 14, 2013 11:30 am

Thanks for all the great advice so far. I thought I would address some comments and clarify what we are doing.

We have a 10 mile trip already planned for Henry Coe in April. (Poverty Flat) The goal is to do Skyline-to-the-sea over four days around labor day. (That probably has it's own issues. Although I have personally done the trip, with a group over a holiday could be a problem. Haven't even looked into that yet.)

First of all, splitting the group into two would not be a problem. We wouldn't have enough adults for more than two groups. Two should make the group size fine everywhere with the possible exception of desolation wilderness. For example, I led a trip last fall into Emigrant Wilderness. We split into two groups with the stronger one leaving the trailhead an hour earlier and pushing further in to a different lake.

AlmostThere wrote:I would take them to Point Reyes. The limiting factor there is campsite capacity and they have camps that have a max of 25.


I looked into this a little before posting. It seems their is a very good chance of cold and foggy weather in midJuly??

DavePloessel wrote:
If you want to stay coastal, the silver peak/ventana wilderness areas in los padres NF have some great backpacking, and even have hot springs you can hike in to.


My understanding is it gets uncomfortably hot here in the summer. I had also looked into the Pine Ridge trail after seeing a glowing review.

maverick wrote:Hi Barry,

With your mosquito restrictions the Sierra is definitely out for July. Your group may
want to consider the Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail, Ventana Wilderness, Point Reyes, the
Ohlone Trail and Henry Coe will be to hot and dry by July. WD's suggestion about
breaking up the group is a good one since getting permits and finding a place that
can accommodate such a large group will be difficult.


Skyline-to-the-Sea does seem like the best choice for MidJuly. It is too bad the plan we came up with the boys calls for it in September.

jimmeans wrote:I don't remember where it was, but I once ran across a scout troup that solved this problem by splitting into two groups and starting at the opposite ends of a shuttle hike. They were meeting some where in the middle to exchange keys, etc.


This is a great suggestion if we find a suitable location.

mokelumnekid wrote:Hmmm...yeah mid-July is buggy most places. Here is one that can be done in three nights by kids of all ages, starts high and goes down hill the first day. It is in the Ebbetts Pass area where there is grazing, so impacts from people are not so much a worry. And the car shuttle is reasonably short and the drop off is on the drive in.

Drive to Highland Lakes (just west of Ebbetts Pass, serviced by a decent dirt and gravel road. Campgrounds but no services). Stay there for a night. next day, backpack *down* Highland Creek to Hiram Meadow or below. Camp there- very large meadow with old range cabin. Hike north out and up Weiser Creek trail until topping out at head of Marshall Canyon just east of Henry Peak, follow trail down into Pacific Valley where shuttle vehicle can be left on the way in.

One rub is that probably isn't 20 miles. Maybe start at Ebbetts Pass, hit the PCT to Highland Lakes then proceed as above. Lot's of possibilities. One thing is since there is a lot of volcanic rock in that area, there is more soil = lots of wild flowers.

Anyway just a thought.


This is an interesting idea and I will explore a little further. I have been to Highland Lakes and done day hikes out of there. Do you think it will have less of a midJuly Mosquito problem?
User avatar
Barry
Topix Novice
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2012 6:29 pm
Location: Los Gatos, CA and Incline Village, NV
Experience: N/A

Re: Advice MidJuly Scouts 20 miles 3 nights

Postby tim » Thu Feb 14, 2013 1:47 pm

You may be better off switching Skyline-to-Sea to July and going to the Sierra over Labor Day. If you go north or south you can pick non-quota areas, but the main issue will be maximum group size, which ranges from 8 (Mokelumne) to 15 (Inyo). So make sure you check on that.

However, if you do want to go to the Sierra and still avoid the bugs, then I'd say go south, go no earlier than say the third week of July and hope for a continuation of the dry conditions. There are potentially good non-quota (or in a few cases generous quota) options in Golden Trout/South Sierra/Domeland/Owens Peak - most spectacular are the areas around Horseshoe Meadows but that may be too much of a long drive to the east side. Others can advise on options around the Kern River valley for example.
User avatar
tim
Topix Expert
 
Posts: 504
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2009 1:36 pm
Location: Bay Area
Experience: N/A

Next

Return to Backpacking / Hiking / Camping



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: mkbgdns and 4 guests