Sky Blue Lake, Crabtree Pass Recon

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RockSolid
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Sky Blue Lake, Crabtree Pass Recon

Post by RockSolid » Mon Jul 31, 2017 6:22 pm

lake above Sky Blue arrow.jpg
miter basin.jpg
lake above Sky Blue arrow.jpg
Sky Blue Lake.jpg
lake above Sky Blue arrow.jpg
Long time Lurker, first time reporter. Pictures worth a 1,000 words, hence a brief report.
New Army Pass, no longer a factor, consider it clear to the top.
Sky Blue Lake (11,555ft.), clear. Lake above Sky Blue (12,154 ft.) 80% ice w/east side thick snow banks not melting this summer. Crabtree Pass plenty of snow. Would speculate other side of Crabtree Pass would be snow all the way down to the lake.
As a Scoutmaster I’ve done Whitney from Sky Blue Lake via Crabtree Pass/upper Crabtree Lake/dreaded Sand Hill twice. Months ago the intent for this weekend was a Whitney/Muir climb, it turned into 1.5 days 2 glorious nights at Sky Blue Lake just fishing and exploring. As mentioned, I’ve taken two groups of boy scouts to Whitney this route. We we’re a group of 7 with a couple newbies. If it was just a couple of climbing buddies I would not have hesitated this route WITH CRAMPONS AND ICE AXES. My notable experience level is Williamson/Tyndall back to back last summer in 3 days, guided Grand Teton climb last summer. Mt. Split twice, Middle Palisade on a 3 day weekend last September.

All those guys over there on the fishing thread are probably wondering about the fishing conditions. Well since the fishermen love to show their prize goldens with no mention of location, I’m not about to mention if it’s worth going back to Sky Skunk Lake. Email me personally and I’ll trade info!

Ps Micro Spikes are for taking the trash out in the middle of winter in Wisconsin, and Bear Spray is breath mint for bears! If you’re concerned about slipping you sure as **** better have a way to arrest yourself from slipping into that frozen lake, or rocks. Once you put traction on your shoes you better have an ice axe in hand. As for the bear spray, join the NRA, or keep a clean camp!
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freestone
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Re: Sky Blue Lake, Crabtree Pass Recon

Post by freestone » Mon Jul 31, 2017 6:59 pm

A Bald Eagle and the Big Horn Sheep on the same trip? I'm envious!
Fram...

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maverick
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Re: Sky Blue Lake, Crabtree Pass Recon

Post by maverick » Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:10 pm

Hi RockSolid,

Welcome to HST! Thanks for the TR and pictures! :thumbsup:
Since this was your first post, did you mean to post the same picture 3 times? :)
Professional Sierra Landscape Photographer

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.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org

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Re: Sky Blue Lake, Crabtree Pass Recon

Post by balzaccom » Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:08 pm

freestone wrote:A Bald Eagle and the Big Horn Sheep on the same trip? I'm envious!
Me too!
Balzaccom

check out our website: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Sky Blue Lake, Crabtree Pass Recon

Post by gary c. » Tue Aug 01, 2017 2:06 am

Great first post. :thumbsup:
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Re: Sky Blue Lake, Crabtree Pass Recon

Post by Wandering Daisy » Tue Aug 01, 2017 8:02 am

Good to see that Miter Basin is greening up. I assume the lake still partially melted is Crabtree Lake?

I have run across scout groups in the Sierra and am impressed with their abilities and polite interaction with other backpackers. Perhaps one of those was yours. So glad to see kids off the internet and out in the wilderness.

It is always wonderful to run into mountain sheep; I have been lucky enough to do this several times.

As for crampons vs microspikes, the need for an ice axe, and the opinion on bear spray, I respectfully disagree with a black and white statement about these. There are much more subtlties involved. But this, perhaps, is a dicussion to have in a separate forum (under gear).

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kmyamahara
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Re: Sky Blue Lake, Crabtree Pass Recon

Post by kmyamahara » Tue Aug 01, 2017 9:14 am

Nice update. I'm guessing that is the unnamed lake (12129' or WL 3697, depending on which map you are looking at) above SkyBlue looking north at Crabtree Pass with discovery pinnacle in the background.

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Re: Sky Blue Lake, Crabtree Pass Recon

Post by cgundersen » Tue Aug 01, 2017 9:34 am

rocksolid,
I agree, sheep and a bald eagle on the same trip is pretty darn rare. And, on the subject of wildlife, how were the pests, as in skeeters? Otherwise, it's looking like that area is almost approaching a summer-like appearance relative to the buckets of snow further north. Cameron

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RockSolid
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Re: Sky Blue Lake, Crabtree Pass Recon

Post by RockSolid » Tue Aug 01, 2017 10:34 am

Please accept my apology for double clicking and posting the same pic, social media is not my thing. First night at Soldier Lake in the tree line was skeeter tolerable, head nets on, one of our party slept under the stars. Kids were hanging out in trunks only in the afternoon at Sky Blue Lake.
The partially frozen lake is the un-named lake above Sky Blue Lake on the approach to Crabtree Pass. Did not go to Crabtree Pass, we rather played in the waterfall below the un-named lake, Ice Cream Headache Cold!
Actually saw sheep twice in one day, these three between Long Lake and High Lake on approach to New Army Pass, and later the 8 others on the west side of the pass.
I took a walk about to Primerose Lake, overshot the mark by 500 ft or so, nice view never the less. The close up of Crabtree Pass is on the way up to Primerose, should of just continued up The Miter, was by myself and used my better judgment. Yes, Sand Hill and Pinnacles in the background
As for additional traction, best to preach caution. Too many folks die on places like Mt. Baldy because anyone can walk into a sporting goods store and buy gear they have no sense how to use. Years ago my family bought my first ice axe for Christmas at Adventure 16, the store folks almost refused to sell it to her.
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Re: Sky Blue Lake, Crabtree Pass Recon

Post by Jimr » Tue Aug 01, 2017 12:50 pm

Very nice! I used to go to A16 every year to buy maps.
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