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Bear boxes at North Lake

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Bear boxes at North Lake

Postby longri » Sun Oct 08, 2017 8:27 am

So why aren't there bear boxes at the North Lake overnight parking lot? The North Lake campground has them so presumably there are sometimes bears that visit. But for the backcountry overnight visitor there are no signs warning about bears and no boxes. What do you guys do with extra food and other odorous items when parking there overnight?



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Re: Bear boxes at North Lake

Postby rlown » Sun Oct 08, 2017 9:30 am

I sent an email to Inyo. We'll see what they say..

I've been out of North Lake on 3 occasions. The first trip we didn't have that much that smelled, and suggested we just toss it in the trash. Second and third trip, we packed and culled pre-trip and had no smellies. If we get a spot at the campground the first night, we take it for altitude. If we don't get a spot, we grab our packs and go.
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Re: Bear boxes at North Lake

Postby rlown » Tue Oct 10, 2017 8:05 am

Not what you wanted to hear, but if you keep up the pressure, maybe sometime it'll happen.


Hi Russ,
Several of our trail heads do not have bear boxes. In recent years we have been trying to get food storage boxes in all of our campground campsites, as budget allows. Hopefully we will be able to add boxes to North Lake in the future.
Cheers, Cindy

Cindy Gervasoni
Wilderness Permit Office and Web Team
Supervisory Visitor Services Information
Forest Service
Inyo National Forest, Supervisor's Office
p: 760-873-2483
cgervasoni@fs.fed.us

351 Pacu Lane
Bishop, CA 93514
www.fs.usda.gov/inyo
www.fs.fed.us


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Re: Bear boxes at North Lake

Postby SNOOOOW » Tue Oct 10, 2017 11:05 am

There are bear boxes at South Lake if you really need to stash food or scented items. I typically call in advance if unfamiliar with a trailhead and the bear box situation so that way I am not in that predicament of "what to do with this extra stuff" when heading out for a few nights.
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Re: Bear boxes at North Lake

Postby longri » Tue Oct 10, 2017 1:29 pm

I know there are boxes at South Lake as well as pretty much every major trailhead. I think the trailhead for Big Pine Creek has them too but I doubt bears visit there. It struck me as weird because I've hiked out of North Lake numerous times and don't recall ever having this issue before. Either they removed boxes or else I never had anything to stash in the past. Fortunately I didn't have very much this time and figured out a way to deal with it.

I took the lack of bear boxes to possibly mean that bears aren't too big of an issue there. Because if they were a problem I think the forest service would have done something about it.

I received a PM from someone who said that someone at an Inyo permit station said just that -- that bears aren't an issue at North Lake.


When's the last time you saw a car at an east side trailhead (other than Whitney Portal) damaged from a bear?
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Re: Bear boxes at North Lake

Postby Gazelle » Wed Oct 11, 2017 7:39 am

Was up at onion valley trailhead last weekend and they were adding bear boxes to the trailhead parking area and a sign on the bathroom of serious bear activity in the area, store your food etc in bear boxes.
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Re: Bear boxes at North Lake

Postby SNOOOOW » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:20 am

Good point Longri, I have only seen a vehicle damaged by bears in Yosemite Valley and in Mammoth but never at any of the Eastside trailheads. I always like to leave a cooler with cold beers at the trailhead so when we complete a trip we can have our celebratory beer while loading up the cars.
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