Looking for info - Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH

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fox212
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Looking for info - Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH

Post by fox212 » Wed Jun 28, 2017 11:22 am

Hi All,

I'm looking for some information for an upcoming hike on 7/17 - 7/19 thru Humphreys Basin. We are a group of 4 - 2 very experienced backpackers and 2 newcomers with plenty of other outdoors experience and good fitness levels (at low elevation anyway). We are hiking from Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH. I've gotten some great nuggets of info so far, but have a few specific questions:

- Puppet pass - looks very mellow, but will be snow covered. Microspikes might be nice for an early morning climb, but probably not necessary?

- Any good places to car camp at or near the Pine Creek TH the night before?

I've seen Harlen's TR of their Humphreys Basin ski trip from earlier this month, which had some great photos and descriptions to give me an idea of what to expect, but any other info or opinions are much appreciated. Thanks!








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rlown
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Re: Looking for info - Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH

Post by rlown » Wed Jun 28, 2017 11:49 am

Welcome to HST!

Not sure where to camp before Pine creek TH, but there is probably dispersed camping on the approach somewhere.

Puppet pass (Carol Col) faces North, so I would expect some snow at the lip coming N to S. I'd do the spikes and trekking poles with baskets in case, but I usually put them away on passes with talus. Make sure to set appropriate expectations on the snow with the newcomers, and acclimatize before you start hiking, as you mentioned coming from low elevation. If they are in trail runners, bring extra socks as it'll be wet.

Remember to check for road access on North lake per Mav's post showing water flowing over the road in multiple places (conditions area of the forum).

And, Bring your favorite skeeter repellent/ head nets/etc. They are only going to tick up large very soon.

Have fun and be safe.

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maverick
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Re: Looking for info - Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH

Post by maverick » Wed Jun 28, 2017 12:01 pm

Hi Fox212,
- Puppet pass - looks very mellow, but will be snow covered. Microspikes might be nice for an early morning climb, but probably not necessary?
No they are not, if you time you crossing after the snow has softened up a bit, mid morning, and you know what you are doing, otherwise go prepared with what will keep your safer.
- Any good places to car camp at or near the Pine Creek TH the night before?
There are a few spots of nice, undeveloped camping available on the SE side of the road, across the road from the Pratt's Crack climbing area.
You also have Horton Creek Campground and several campgrounds in Rock Creek Canyon near-by.
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I don't give out specific route information, my belief is that it takes away from the whole adventure spirit of a trip, if you need every inch planned out, you'll have to get that from someone else.

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Re: Looking for info - Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH

Post by Bmac » Wed Jun 28, 2017 12:09 pm

There is camping about 2-3 miles from the trailhead on the left side of the road. Standard primitive camping. There is one large central dirt area and a few more secluded "sites." It's a nice spot. If you are going to be there Friday through Sunday you might not find a spot as you are competing with climbers. There are other less than great spots down little dirt roads around that area... Depends how picky you are... The nicer stuff is in the trees on the left. PM me if this isn't enough info to figure it out.

I see someone else answered mid typing... Just to add to that... Bishop has a TON blm stuff all around, it generally isn't hard to find some flat ground.

*Note: first workable camping on trail is about 4 miles in

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Re: Looking for info - Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH

Post by japhy0508 » Wed Jun 28, 2017 2:04 pm

Would be very interested to hear how your trip goes. We are heading to the bench that holds puppet, etc. lakes via north lake starting 8/10.....so heading down puppet/carol col first. I recognize this will be nearly a month later than your trip, but would be great to be able to connect the dots based on earlier trip reports. We're likely heading back towards north lake for exiting. Principally a fishing trip. Fully anticipating a healthy mosquito population for this trip!

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Re: Looking for info - Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH

Post by fox212 » Wed Jun 28, 2017 4:03 pm

Thanks all for the great info, just what I was hoping for.

We will be camping at/near the Pine Creek TH just the night before (Sunday), and certainly won't be picky so I'm sure we'll find something that works. We will be at 7000-9000ft for the weekend before the hike so that should help with acclimatization, and we will be taking our time.

All members of the group have spikes and poles, and will be bringing them. I, for one, will definitely be rockin' trail runners. And definitely a couple extra pairs of socks :)

I will be sure to write up at least a brief TR. I agree that noting the progression of the melt, especially in such a heavy snow year, is very interesting.

Speaking of heavy snow melt - creek crossings - any particularly hairy ones we should be aware of?

Thanks again for the very helpful replies so far!

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Re: Looking for info - Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH

Post by rlown » Wed Jun 28, 2017 4:51 pm

We like pictures :) No major stream crossings, depending on the melt out of the Piute pass drainage. At least it's downhill from there. Two vehicles or hitching?

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Re: Looking for info - Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH

Post by Bmac » Wed Jun 28, 2017 7:36 pm

well i dont know what route you are taking, but just before lower pine creek lake there is a foot bridge made of logs... given the flooding, its possible that washed away, even though it was fairly burly. There is also a normally mellow wide crossing somewhere after the second lake... its normally easy walking rock to rock.., who knows is year though...

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Re: Looking for info - Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH

Post by QITNL » Thu Jun 29, 2017 2:34 am

I was up in Sabrina Lakes basin last weekend.

Trails were streams, gullies were creeks, creeks were rivers, meadows were lakes, log bridges were floating.

Every downward slope was a waterfall. I was overjoyed when I hit solid snow.

Sure was purdy, though.

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Re: Looking for info - Pine Creek TH to North Lake TH

Post by fox212 » Thu Jun 29, 2017 12:56 pm

Thanks again folks!

Yep, planning on soggy feet and enough skeeters to carry my pack for me ;)

I'm no photographer but I will definitely be taking (and sharing) plenty of pics.

CAN'T WAIT! It's been way too long since I was up in the mountains. New job, new town, new house, and a new baby boy in the last year really eat up a man's time!

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