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Second Recess Questions

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Second Recess Questions

Postby Carne_DelMuerto » Sat May 11, 2013 2:46 pm

Howdy all,

I've been doing some research on the Second Recess above Mono Creek and despite many Google searches and reading relevant posts on this forum I can't find the information I need. Hoping someone here can help me out.

Since I haven't posted in a while, here's my relevant details:

• What level of backpacking experience do you have?
Level 4- Comfortable with trail and/or x-country travel

• What terrain are you comfortable with?
- Class 2 terrain/pass/x-country
- Class 3 terrain/pass/x-country (Would prefer to keep this minimal—will not be carrying a rope.)
- River crossings
- Snow travel/Glacier crossings (Soft afternoon snow—will not be carrying ice axe or microspikes)

I'd like to do a loop around the top of the Second Recess, going from Upper Mills Creek Lake and staying north of Mono Divide, making my way to Mist Lake and then into the First Recess. From the look of the terrain, this may be impossible/extremely difficult, but I wanted to ask here to make sure. Below is an image with my ideal route and three numbered locations.

HST_Qs_Second_Recess.jpg


Point #1) Secor notes this as a Class 2 route to summit Mt. Gabb, following the glacier up to the NW ridge. From this ridge, can one descend to the SW and follow the contour to Lake 11,740?

Point #2) Is this small notch to the NW of Hilgard Pass a Class 2 or 3 route? Has anyone ever gone this way to reach Mist Lake? (If I am able to make it here and Point #2 is impassable, I do have the option of going over Hilgard Pass or following the ramps, mentioned in Secor, back down the Second Recess.)

Point #3) From Mist Lake, can one contour to the NNW without losing much elevation and curve west to the saddle connecting to the First Recess?

This route is obviously a product me dreaming and looking at maps too long. The more I look at it, the more I think it's folly to try it. (And probably the reason I can't find any info on this small area.) Honestly, I'm betting one of the regulars here can tell me it's not a good idea and that will be fine. I just wanted to cover all the bases before I wrote it off. Thanks!
Wonder is rock and water and the life that lives in-between.



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Re: Second Recess Questions

Postby maverick » Mon May 13, 2013 4:23 pm

PM sent about route.
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: Second Recess Questions

Postby John Dittli » Mon May 13, 2013 5:45 pm

The notch at point 2 goes. Traversing over from Hilgard pass, I actually passed thru a notch higher on the ridge (south) then depicted on the map. From there I traversed west to a notch and crossed over into the "north fork Hilgard Lake creek". The slope down to Mist lake looked like easy slab, but it was under snow,
1006_623_D1L.jpg
looking across upper Mist Lake Basin, I crossed the ridge high in the upper right.
1006_612_D1LP.jpg
Mist Lake Basin; Mist Lake bottom center
1006_619_D1L.jpg
Hilgard Pass from the south


I thought I had a photo of the east side of the Mist Lake notch, but I guess not. I seem to recall an easy, short, 2nd class gully.

John
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Re: Second Recess Questions

Postby Carne_DelMuerto » Mon May 13, 2013 8:55 pm

Thank you, John & Maverick. The info you've provided is quite helpful. Perhaps this route isn't as difficult as I assumed.
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Re: Second Recess Questions

Postby murphtron » Wed May 15, 2013 8:37 am

Hi does anyone have insight to snow levels in Mono Creek and up into the recesses? I'm thinking about a long weekender early June leaving from Lake TE and exploring the recesses. I hear there's more snow in the south vs north.

Thanks in advance.
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Re: Second Recess Questions

Postby John Dittli » Wed May 15, 2013 9:20 pm

I was up in Little Lakes Valley yesterday; Ruby Lake is frozen and Mono Pass has snow from the last switchback. I'm guessing the Recesses (north facing) are pretty snow covered down to 10,000, maybe 9,500'. That's just a guess though.

Oh, and actually there is way more snow in the north....
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Re: Second Recess Questions

Postby murphtron » Thu May 16, 2013 12:18 pm

Moved this question to new thread
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=9274#p68920
Last edited by murphtron on Thu May 16, 2013 12:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Second Recess Questions

Postby maverick » Thu May 16, 2013 12:25 pm

Murphtron,

Please start a separate thread inquiring about specific's concerning your trip
so you do not piggyback on the OP's thread. Thanks Mav
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: Second Recess Questions

Postby Ken M » Sun May 19, 2013 9:54 am

Part of your question is answered in this wonderful TR:

http://www.johnreedfamily.com/~mono_rec ... s_2000.htm
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Re: Second Recess Questions

Postby Carne_DelMuerto » Mon May 20, 2013 12:07 pm

Thanks, Ken. I had come across this TR during my search. It does cover a small portion of the route I hope to take.
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Re: Second Recess Questions

Postby cgundersen » Mon May 27, 2013 9:28 am

hi carne,
I'd guess between John & Mav you pretty much have this covered, but my 2 cents from looking around at other options in upper 2nd recess (we exited 2nd recess via the notch directly above Mist Lake and continued around to Hilgard Lake) is that most everything you proposed should work. I have a few photos that might be vaguely helpful and I'll try to track down your email and send them.
cg
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Re: Second Recess Questions

Postby cgundersen » Mon May 27, 2013 10:15 am

hi carne,
OK, I'll try to get a few shots in here: one is a long view into upper 2nd recess from below Grinnell Lake and the right side of the frame gives you some idea of the high traverse you were planning to use to get to 1st recess. The second photo is looking up at the end of 2nd recess from the meadow down in the canyon below Mist Lake. And one photo is of Mist Lake itself.
cg
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Mist Lake
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upper 2nd recess
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