Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15 | High Sierra Topix  

Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

A forum to initiate member meet-up. Looking for a hiking/climbing/fishing/skiing/etc. partner, or are you planning a trip where you wouldn't mind having some company? Last minute invites can be just as fun as a well-planned group trip (sometimes even better) so don't be shy! And be sure to post a trip report to the appropriate forum when you get back.
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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby Wandering Daisy » Thu Dec 04, 2014 10:42 pm

I am still waiting on the date for the NOLS 50th year reunion in Lander Wyoming this summer. I am DEFINITELY going to that! Plus I will do a 10-day Wyo backpack when there. If the meet-up does not conflict, I will plan on being there.



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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby Hobbes » Thu Dec 04, 2014 10:52 pm

Your 10.5 looks closer to the mark. Having been up/down a couple of times, I always thought the distance between the top of the ridge and the bottom was longer than noted. (Then again, maybe it's just perception as you have to climb out almost 600' while thoroughly tired.)

As for those lakes at the pass, I do believe the upper Tyndall plateau might win the most forlorn, windswept and barren place in the Sierra award. It's similar to the way PCTers describe hiking across Tehachapi pass - you pop out over the pass, where the canyon is generally calm & warm and boom - hold onto your hat. Going the other way, it's like a mini, depressing ordeal until you literally drop over a small ledge and are basked in the warmth of the canyon.

I think you'll really like Wright lakes basin - I was really impressed by the extensive meadows and easy hiking. Will you be going over Rockwell? That would make a nice little loop either heading back over Bighorn (Mav's route) or continuing down to the PCT. From there, you could drop down to the Kern on the HST, and then hit Milestone on the way back out.
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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby Wandering Daisy » Fri Dec 05, 2014 8:12 am

Last year I went over Rockwell - it now has a pretty distinct use-trail all the way up on the north side, if you can find it from the bottom. Fishing was great at the ugly lakes just below the pass on the south side. I say ugly because the water quality was so bad I wondered how fish could live in it.

I have camped at one of the lakes just as you top over the pass. I guess I was lucky - it was not that windy.

I find Shepherd Pass a mental issue. Just as you finish the grueling first uphill you have to go down! So I do a lot of internal "pep talks" to myself. I focus on the nice rest I am getting going down, and put the going back up out of my head. In fact on all the long east side passes, I find that an "in the moment" attitude helps a lot, plus I do not look up! I look back to see how far I have come instead. Sort of get into a "zen" place, one foot in front of the other. I also trick myself by planning to camp part way up a pass (a more reasonable goal), and get to my initial destination soon enough that I actually go all the way over the pass. Another key to success is a pre-dawn start to beat the heat. I tend to totally wilt in the heat.

I have always camped at the upper flat above the Pot Holes, at the edge of timber. I do not get too obsessed with actual mileage given in guide books or on trail signs. Some are quite inaccurate. Time needed is more important than miles, and that is variable depending on my mood, the weather, how well I slept the night before, etc, etc, Two days to get to destinations on the other side of Shepherd Pass seems quite reasonable. Luckily there are choices of campsites before you get to the pass and after you get over.
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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby freestone » Fri Dec 05, 2014 9:11 am

...And speaking of ugly, lets not forget about that deep wash out gash just before Anvil holding an assortment of nasty surprises and challenges for the weary traveler.
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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby SSSdave » Fri Dec 05, 2014 10:53 am

The following ought to give some understanding as to why my usual detailed itinerary plans are often too strange to backpack with others with. Well except for serious photographers buying in to the same strategy. Yeah upper Tyndall images look desolate. Given the sw to ne trend it is the perfect angle for unblocked winter storm winds. After my 3k+ climb on the second day to the pass by early pm, am likely to be rather dead so will nap a few hours by lake 3580+ wsw of the pass.

http://mapper.acme.com/?ll=36.67262,-118.35815&z=15&t=T

If in the very unlikely event late afternoon breezes are calm, might climb to get a Williamson and Tyndall image from lake 3800+ meters nw of the pass. More likely with refreshed energy about 4pm will leave my backpack and climb up the 600 foot class 2 south point of Diamond Mesa and find a perspective at the brink near where the "P" in PARK shows on the topo. That way I get the lake I was napping at below and Tyndall and Williamson are nicely separated enough for a normal lens angle view though will like most serious pics on that trip use my robotic head for a multi row-column stitch. Although that is also a good angle for late light as the sun sets maybe 27 degrees north of due west, I won't bother with staying up there beyond about 6:30pm as my plan is also to be back in that zone on the return leg. Besides although the two peaks get more interesting light towards 7pm plus, the lower frame landscapes will loose definition because the angle is too directly front lit. So will be back at my pack by about 7pm. That will leave me an hour to ramble down by dusk, the 2.5 miles to the lake chain on the bench nw of Tawny Point where I would be asleep by 9:30pm.

The third morning would rise by 5am, break camp, and ramble down the PCT till vectoring off at the popular pond next to the trail on Bighorn Plateau. From there will continue to a location down in the foxtail pines with water further to the sw on this feature, drop my pack, and then work all morning and afternoon up on this uniquely unusual landscape that has superb am perspectives with foxtail foregrounds of the Great Western Divide and Kaweah Peaks Ridge and crest perspectives in the pm.

Fourth morning will move down to the lower Wrights Creek Meadows where I've id'd a good perspective towards the big peaks to the east and drop gear for later camp while continuing up the creek for a view down at lake 3380+ from above towards Kaweah Peaks Ridge. Back at my campspot, midday is usually the main meal of the day, gear work, and rest. After some 4pm to 5pm pics about the meadows will do the class 1 climb up the sw slope of Barnard to 12300 for a optimal 6pm view of Whitney, Hale, and Young with Wales, and Wallace below. The other parts of my trip are like detailed with lots of red pencil map marks showing image perspectives.

David
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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby Hobbes » Fri Dec 05, 2014 5:57 pm

You'll have a blast. With that kind of dedication getting to good vantage spots, I'm sure you'll get many fantastic photos. I take along a Sureshot just to record some visual trail notes, and even I can pull off a generic alpenglow photo of Barnard from the 'pothole' lake in WLB.

Image

Btw, the southwest shoulder of Barnard is difficult terrain. I thought I was going to short-cut the route on the way to Wales, but it's within treeline and covered with large boulders (the edge leading up is visible on the left in the photo below). I had been advised that heading almost to the PCT down this meadow was easier, but didn't become a believer until I was actually standing there:

Image
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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby Jimr » Fri Dec 05, 2014 6:05 pm

That was the longest meadow hike I'd ever done.
What?!
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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby Hobbes » Fri Dec 05, 2014 10:37 pm

'Versteeg' lake (3645) [has 8-9" generic rainbow/GT hybrids]:

Image

Looking the other way all the way down WLB from the 3645 outlet [photo @ 5:57 post is 2/3 down the meadow]:

Image

Looking all the way up WLB after leaving the PCT by a few hundred yards:

Image

The last person I saw was my wife (asleep) @ 1am when I left OC. I didn't see anyone from the TH @ 5:30am* until the meet-up 3 days later, and saw no one on the return until dropping over the mini-ledge @ Shepherd and coming across 4 hikers resting on their way up.

As Jim mentioned, I think this might be the longest meadow hike in the Sierra; definitely x-country. The scale of the region is immense. Here's a fuller image from just below Rockwell looking back & down:

Image

Image


*As everyone knows, you have to physically pick-up your permit if entering a park, but I was on Mav's group permit, so I was able to book it directly up the trail in the semi-dark without stopping once along the way during the drive up.
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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby austex » Fri Dec 05, 2014 11:01 pm

Once you leave the "OC" it's all good and forgotten. BUT till you drive south through North County where it's supposedly better than the "O.C." Then the "O.C." isn't so grandiose. :rolleyes:
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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby austex » Fri Dec 05, 2014 11:03 pm

Posting from Austin and head :lol: in Encinitas/ Malibu.
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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby SSSdave » Sat Dec 06, 2014 7:51 pm

easier than hiking but not as inspiring

Image

:)
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Re: Maverick's 2015 Annual HST Meet-Up 7/22-7/24/15

Postby freestone » Sat Dec 06, 2014 9:51 pm

in the very unlikely event late afternoon breezes are calm, might climb to get a Williamson and Tyndall image from lake 3800+ meters nw of the pass.

SSSDave, you will not be disappointed. I was looking for fish not light.Image[
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