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Southern Sierra - smoke?

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Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby markley » Tue Aug 04, 2015 4:09 pm

Hey all,
Just a few days out from starting our 2 week excursion around the southern Sierra. Our first stop is supposed to be Quaking Aspen campground where we are going to be meeting some friends that are driving over from Phoenix. Being that the Cabin Fire is only 10 miles north of Quaking Aspen, my friends are seriously considering not making the drive to Phoenix (understandably so). From what I've read the inversion is causing the smoke from this fire to come down the Kern Valley, which is an area we planned on hiking :angry: . Looking at the Jordan Peak web cam (SE towards Needles) it didn't look too bad yesterday.http://rockyags.cr.usgs.gov/dashboards/ ... e=20150803

Although from what I can tell, it seems as though this fire has doubled over the last day or so. Any thoughts on if it would still be worth heading to Quaking Aspen?



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Re: Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby rlown » Tue Aug 04, 2015 4:18 pm

A LOT of California is on fire about now. I don't think you should let smoke stop you.
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Re: Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby maverick » Tue Aug 04, 2015 4:35 pm

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: Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby maverick » Tue Aug 04, 2015 4:52 pm

Any thoughts on if it would still be worth heading to Quaking Aspen?


Unfortunately everything depends on the directions of the wind, and no one can tell you for certain which way they will be blowing.
I would call the Sierra NF a day of two before you plan of camping there to find out the current conditions, besides keeping an eye on this, Quaking Aspen is just to close to the fire. http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4423/
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Re: Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby markley » Tue Aug 04, 2015 4:57 pm

Ha..no doubt. Yeah, it's definitely not gonna stop us. More less just trying to figure out the best meeting spot to see an old friend this weekend. Thanks Maverick..I've been religiously checking the inciweb site over the past few days. I agree with Quaking Aspen being just too close. I think we are going to meet up at Grays Meadow CG in Onion Valley instead..not too much farther of a drive from LAX, and a little closer to our friends coming from Phoenix. I
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Re: Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby Mradford » Tue Aug 04, 2015 4:58 pm

I was up in Little Lakes Valley yesterday and smelled smoke most of the morning. On the drive home the Eastern Sierra was a little hazy from smoke, but nothing crazy. Hope this helps.
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Re: Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby markley » Tue Aug 04, 2015 4:59 pm

Thanks Mradford! Yeah, we'll be making our way up that way after Onion Valley.
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Re: Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby SSSdave » Tue Aug 04, 2015 6:27 pm

Reported that Cabin Fire smoke this morning on this thread:

viewtopic.php?f=34&t=13220

Was up in the Bishop Creek zone. Was clear till Sunday evening when the current trough off the coast pushed the monsoon high east. Only smoke was from Mammoth north from the Willow Fire near Bass Lake. That changed winds to the southwest and west moving smoke into the Owens Valley that then pushed north up that valley. For serious photographers, smokey skies are useless. I left a day early.

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Re: Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby sekihiker » Wed Aug 05, 2015 2:38 pm

I was out of Maxson Trailhead, yesterday, and smoke caused me to abort my hike. It is the first time in 60 years of hiking I have ended a trip early for any reason. My eyes burned, my nose ran, I had a headache. I've hiked in smoke before but have never felt this way before. Hopefully any smoke you may run into on the trip will not affect any of you.
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Re: Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby maverick » Wed Aug 05, 2015 2:48 pm

I was out of Maxson Trailhead, yesterday, and smoke caused me to abort my hike. It is the first time in 60 years of hiking I have ended a trip early for any reason. My eyes burned, my nose ran, I had a headache. I've hiked in smoke before but have never felt this way before. Hopefully any smoke you may run into on the trip will not affect any of you.


Sorry to read that, bummer, only had one trip where the smoke bothered my eyes, and made breathing difficult, Dumbbell Basin during the Tehipite Fire 2008.
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Re: Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby markley » Thu Aug 06, 2015 4:11 am

Sorry to hear you had to abort your hike. Was that due to the rough fire? I have a feeling we'll be driving to avoid smoke our whole trip. Really hoping onion valley will be okay this weekend. .mostly for my friend's sake who is driving up from Phoenix for just 2 nights.
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Re: Southern Sierra - smoke?

Postby sekihiker » Thu Aug 06, 2015 7:54 am

markley wrote:Sorry to hear you had to abort your hike. Was that due to the rough fire?

The Rough fire seems to be the only one in the area. I met a couple of hikers who said there was another fire near Sawmill Flat, but that one must have been put out.
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