Marmots at Mineral King Trailhead? What is the update?

All discussion related to transportation to, from and within the Sierra Nevada. Need directions or flight information? Info on road conditions? A ride to the trail head? Can you offer a ride, or do you run a transportation business or shuttle service for the Sierra Nevada? Come on in and post the details!
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SSSdave
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Re: Marmots at Mineral King Trailhead? What is the update?

Post by SSSdave » Sun Jul 30, 2017 10:10 am

The insulation on the underside of my 2007 Forester hood has been chewed up which is trivial. I've been there several times over the years and never had any serious damage even though only once did anything and that was put the hood up. The usual serious problem is when they chew on coolant hoses. They do that because of the sweet coolant smell and rubber out gassing. My suspicion is the reason they have never bothered my vehicles is because my engines tend to get rather dust, oil, and dirt covered due to all the dirt roads I drive and that mutes that smell making them less tasty. Instead they probably prefer newer vehicles with clean engines where all the rubber and plastic parts are still out gassing or vehicles with slight coolant leakage.

David

http://www.davidsenesac.com/2017_Trip_C ... les-0.html








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longri
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Re: Marmots at Mineral King Trailhead? What is the update?

Post by longri » Thu Aug 10, 2017 8:41 am

kpeter wrote:To revive a three year old thread....I am going to MK for the first time. It appears to be "early season" for Marmots, so I presume I need to prepare my car in some way. Anyone have any experience with marmots at MK that is more recent than this three year old thread? What do you do for your cars? And is there a parking area that avoids the problem altogether?
So how did it go? Did you wrap your car or not? Was there evidence of marmot activity?

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Re: Marmots at Mineral King Trailhead? What is the update?

Post by mattzigg » Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:09 am

I just got back Tuesday from a five day trip. Rangers are still recommending precautions. I can't think of a worse way too end a trip then to have marmots destroy your car. (Obviously there are worse ways). By the way, mosquitoes were not too bad. Most trails were snow free except for Precipice Lake and Black Rock Pass. Creek crossings were manageable. Some route finding was necessary at Kaweah Gap and in the Big Arroyo. Other than that, conditions were perfect.

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Re: Marmots at Mineral King Trailhead? What is the update?

Post by longri » Fri Aug 11, 2017 10:19 am

mattzigg wrote:I just got back Tuesday from a five day trip. Rangers are still recommending precautions. I can't think of a worse way too end a trip then to have marmots destroy your car. (Obviously there are worse ways). By the way, mosquitoes were not too bad. Most trails were snow free except for Precipice Lake and Black Rock Pass. Creek crossings were manageable. Some route finding was necessary at Kaweah Gap and in the Big Arroyo. Other than that, conditions were perfect.
I can think of worse things, but yeah, it would suck.

What specifically are the rangers recommending? What did you do to your car?

Everything I've read suggests that chicken wire and tarps are often defeated by persistent marmots.

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Re: Marmots at Mineral King Trailhead? What is the update?

Post by kpeter » Fri Aug 11, 2017 10:35 am

I also was just there. I bought a 20' by 16' tarp, parked on it, and cinched it up. It has to be able to cover your bumpers and wheel wells at least. That seems to be what most people were doing. I also put chicken wire around the outside of the tarp but almost no one else took that added measure. I parked at the Sawtooth trailhead which is reputedly one of the worse ones, and no problems.

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Re: Marmots at Mineral King Trailhead? What is the update?

Post by longri » Fri Aug 11, 2017 11:03 am

Marmots are known to chew through all sorts of things. They eat leather boots. They're after your car's hoses and belts. So why would a tarp be expected to stop them?

But that's what SEKI recommends:
How can you protect your vehicle and marmots?

-Wash the outside, undercarriage, and engine compartment of your vehicle before visiting.

-Physically bl[o]ck marmots by driving over a tarp and then wrapping it around your entire vehicle. Cover the wheel wells and leave your hood up. Wrapping chicken wire around the vehicle is no longer advised, as marmots have learned to get around the wire.

-Use only non-toxic methods to prevent marmots from accessing your vehicle. Do not use any poison or substance that pose a risk to the environment, human or animal health, safety or property.

Image
Rangers recommend using tarps that cover the wheel wells from early Spring to mid-July.
.

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