2011 BACKCOUNTRY CONDITIONS UPDATES | High Sierra Topix  

2011 BACKCOUNTRY CONDITIONS UPDATES

Discussion related to Sierra Nevada current and forecast conditions, as well as general precautions and safety information. Trail conditions, fire/smoke reports, mosquito reports, weather and snow conditions, stream crossing information, and more.
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Re: 2011 BACKCOUNTRY CONDITIONS UPDATES

Postby DoyleWDonehoo » Tue Jun 28, 2011 11:42 am

I have been up this trail numerous times, but not in recent years, probably not since the fire. I have done plenty of trail before and after fires (unfortunately), but Kibbie Ridge takes the cake. I believe that due to this last severe winter, a lot more dead-fall and trash has come down on the trail. After we camped (beyond Lookout Point where the ridge levels out: 6800 feet) I went ahead. At first the trail was totally gone under dead-falls and litter, but I reacquired it for a ways at a place I recognized. Gradually it again became buried under litter and dead-falls, and that just seemed to go on beyond where I could see. I am sure I could have followed the trail, carefully, just from memory alone, and if you have done the route a number of times, you should be able to follow it. Snow was beginning to cover the trail too when I finally turned back, but I bet it is gone now.
I did not go any further up the ridge because I had a noob backpacker with me, and he was just not ready to do that kind of trail, and I wanted to spare him that kind of experience. So we went to Kibbie Lake instead the next day (which had its fair share of dead-falls).
There is also a pretty decent cross-country route from Kibbie Lake to Many Island Lakes I have done a few times, but again, I was not going to take a noob on such a route.
It was a shock to see such a nice trail as the Kibbie Ridge Trail in such poor shape. If you are comfortable with faint trail following, deadfall hopping, and don't mind doing a X-C pace instead of a fast trail pace, you should not have much trouble. Once beyond Kibbie Ridge, it should all be good, with just high water to contend with (and possibly snow). Go for it.
Doyle W. Donehoo
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Re: 2011 BACKCOUNTRY CONDITIONS UPDATES

Postby eileensd » Wed Jun 29, 2011 12:41 pm

Thanks! Will let you know how it goes w/an update on conditions!
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Re: Dinkey / Kaiser Wilderness 6/23

Postby cahikr » Wed Jun 29, 2011 2:57 pm

Any other info on Kaiser Pk. would be appreciated. Will be attempting the summit this weekend and will post my report after the weekend.

AlmostThere wrote:Route taken: roads into Dinkey/Kaiser wilderness areas (Sierra NF)

Difficult section encountered: Not many miles up the FS route from Dinkey Creek Rd toward Willow Meadow TH (the usual TH for Dinkey Lakes basin) people in cars/Jeeps/etc are being turned back by 18-24" of snow in the road. The trees in the area are free of snow, but views north and east show complete coverage on the ground where there are treeless spaces. Snowline is prolly between 7-8,000 feet depending on which way slopes face. Tamarack Ridge road from the 168 north of Shaver is still gated.

A drive up Kaiser Pass reveals the same - Potter Pass trailhead is still under snow, and the sign bagged up. We turned around after realizing the upper trailheads were still going to be this way. Road has been cleared and Vermillion is open but I suspect the trails are still 60-90% coverage between 7-8,000 feet and 100% above that.

Trails out of Wishon toward Crown Valley are going to be the same story - snow within 1-2 miles of the trailheads climbing up. I saw this area from the helicopter, lower areas are full of wildflowers and grass now going brown, high areas still under snow.


Special equipment needed/used: probably crampons and poles will do the trick. I may do an exploratory overnight soon, p'raps out to Kaiser.

Possible alternative routes: none; Courtright Rd is still closed due to snow on the higher parts of the route.
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Re: Dinkey / Kaiser Wilderness 6/23

Postby AlmostThere » Wed Jun 29, 2011 4:47 pm

cahikr wrote:Any other info on Kaiser Pk. would be appreciated. Will be attempting the summit this weekend and will post my report after the weekend.


It'll be snowy. And I do not know how much snow fell last night.
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Re: Dinkey / Kaiser Wilderness 6/23

Postby cahikr » Thu Jun 30, 2011 9:04 am

AlmostThere wrote:
cahikr wrote:Any other info on Kaiser Pk. would be appreciated. Will be attempting the summit this weekend and will post my report after the weekend.


It'll be snowy. And I do not know how much snow fell last night.


Thanks for the update! I think we have decided to head up to Boundary Pk. and then Olancha on the trip home. Both pks. seem to be fairly snow free.
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Re: 2011 BACKCOUNTRY CONDITIONS UPDATES

Postby Kris » Sat Jul 02, 2011 3:14 pm

Kibbie and Many Island are completely snow free. I imagine Boundary and others in proximity are the same. Kibbie Ridge always requires a bit of route finding even into midseason. It's simply not kept up anymore. If you've been up to the area enough times you'll have no problem navigating the trail. You'll find it in spots and lose it in sports. Keep heading up the Ridge towards Styx Pass and the flat granite section right before the pass will have ducks for you.
~We shall not cease from exploration and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started... and know the place for the first time.

T.S. Eliot
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Re: 2011 BACKCOUNTRY CONDITIONS UPDATES

Postby Shawn » Sat Jul 02, 2011 9:14 pm

Got this info from the Devils Postpile Facebook page, dated today (7/2/11)

Trail updates: High Trail out of Agnew Meadows is melted to Clark Lakes/Agnew Pass areas. River Trail still has patchy snow, particularly in shaded areas. Horseshoe Lake/Mammoth Pass trail into Reds Meadow Valley: Snowcovered from Horseshoe Lake over the pass. Beyond the pass into the Rainbow Fire burn area is snow free.
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Re: 2011 BACKCOUNTRY CONDITIONS UPDATES

Postby gary c. » Sat Jul 02, 2011 10:55 pm

I saw that Erin posted to her PCT Journal today, includes a picture from yeserday the 1st of 1000Isl still covered in snow.

http://erinspctjournal.blogspot.com/
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Re: 2011 BACKCOUNTRY CONDITIONS UPDATES

Postby apeman45 » Sun Jul 03, 2011 12:01 am

Update on Carr/Feeley lakes trailhead. You can now drive within 100 yards of the trailhead at Carr and Carr is now ice free and Feeley is half thawed. Brought the fishing poles up to island lake today but it still has no open water but close - probably be good by next week with warm temps forecast. 90 percent snow coverage on the trail from Feeley lake dam up to Island lake. Island Lake has about 4 feet of snow on the ground still but it's melting fast. Firm snow and easy to hike over with boots although saw lots of folks out in snow shoes. Island is around 6800 feet for snow line perspective. Pretty crazy for July. Common for Memorial day but not 4th of July. Lot's of snow skiing still going on at 4 of the nearby Tahoe resorts.
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Re: 2011 BACKCOUNTRY CONDITIONS UPDATES

Postby Baffman » Sun Jul 03, 2011 9:19 am

I'd sure like to know if anyone has gone over Kearsarge withing the last few days. I plan to take a newbie over on the 7th, but I don't want it to be too tough for a first trip. I was only planning to go to Kearsarge Lakes and maybe Charlotte too. Hopefully I'll catch an update from this weekend.
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Re: 2011 BACKCOUNTRY CONDITIONS UPDATES

Postby Sierra Maclure » Sun Jul 03, 2011 4:39 pm

Route taken: Sunrise Trailhead/Tenaya Lk Outflet, Yosemite.

Difficult section encountered: 40 inches deep 7-2-11, not too cold.

Special equipment needed/used: Sandals & shorts, kayak sitting on the far side.

Possible alternative routes: Around the lake.
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Green Lake-Summit Lake 7/1-7/3

Postby Wandering Daisy » Sun Jul 03, 2011 7:30 pm

Green Lake- snow free but many wet spots. Had to wade across a few side creeks on the way- less than a foot deep. East Lake- about 2/3 thawed, 50% snow walking to get there from Green Lake, lots of swamps. Dry camp spots if you look for them. Up to Summit Lake- 60% snow but good solid walking-crossed creeks on snow bridges. Melted out on rocky parts- trail clear- patchy but deep drifts to cross which make loosing the trail easy. Summit Lake- half thawed. Very wet. But amazingly, a nice dry camp spot right at the pass on west end of Summit Lake. West Lake trail- mostly dry- snow patches at top. Lake was about half open. Dry campsites if you look for them.
Last edited by maverick on Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
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