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Tableland in April?

Discussion about winter adventure sports in the Sierra Nevada mountains including but not limited to; winter backpacking and camping, mountaineering, downhill and cross-country skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, etc.

Re: Tableland in April?

Postby Harlen » Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:57 pm

Hey Keith,
Table meadows- Tablelands will be great. It sounds as though you have had a look at the possibilities of heading to Moose lake, and since you seem to love long miles- how about a circle round via a part of the skier's High Route, and then the High Sierra Trail? You could come out of the mountains at Crescent Meadows- some of the very finest giant Sequoias of all, or via Panther Gap, right back to your start at Wolverton? If you are keen to hike all those miles per day, then you might find a way to add in a trip out to Kaweah Gap, or into that high basin beneath Lion Rock and Triple Divide Peak. Let me know if you want any more detail, and I'll dig into my maps, and my favorite skiing book- Backcountry Skiing in the High Sierra, by John Moynier.
I'll include a few photos of the Table Meadows area: The first is a distant view NE from "the Hump," up into the beginning of Table Meadows, with the Tablelands in the far distance. The cloudy, frozen lake shot is looking south from around Emerald Lake on the way there. Behind the boys is the view back toward "The Hump" from the beginning of Table Meadows. Best of luck, Harlen, and please let us know how it goes.

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Last edited by Harlen on Sun Apr 02, 2017 5:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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Re: Tableland in April?

Postby steeleman » Thu Mar 23, 2017 9:36 am

i was just up at tablelands last weekend. it would be a great area for a snowshoe/winter camp trip. The trip over the hump to the pear lake hut is well worn and you'll find plenty of info on that part of the journey. my only comment if you are snowshoeing is that it might be a little better to take a straighter line from the bottom of the "soccer field" (the broad ridge that comes down between Heather and Aster Lakes) towards the Pear Lake Hut, rather than contouring above Aster Lake around 9200' as the ski trail goes. That section involves some sidehilling that I would think gets a bit uncomfortable on snowshoes (vs skis). The penalty is a little bit of down and back up, but not a big deal.

Above the hut, we did a nice tour right up the Marble Fork all the way to Table Meadows, then NE up to the crest of the Kings-Kaweah divide (and Kings Canyon NP boundary). We then toured along the crest up to Big Bird Peak (the unnamed 11600' point due SW of Big Bird Lake). Just be aware of big cornices to your left as you go along the crest - don't go too close or you may find yourself tumbling all the way down to the lake...

The views up here are some of the best I've seen in the Sierra, across Fin Col towards Triple Divide Peak, the Kaweah group and of course the Great Western Divide smack dab in front of you guarding the headwaters of the great Kern Canyon behind it. Just awesome. You could go beyond this up to Fin Pass and towards the high route, or as suggested a longer loop back towards Moose Lake and down into Buck Canyon on the Middle Fork side and back over at Panther Gap to the trailhead. Possibilities are pretty limitless around there.
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Re: Tableland in April?

Postby cunningkeith » Sun Apr 02, 2017 1:15 pm

Awesome shots and descriptions. I'll check out these options. Thanks again!
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