Help planning for late 2016 trip

If you've been searching for the best source of information and stimulating discussion related to Spring/Summer/Fall backpacking, hiking and camping in the Sierra Nevada...look no further!
User avatar
Sierra Miguel
Topix Acquainted
Posts: 54
Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2014 10:15 pm
Experience: Level 3 Backpacker
Location: Berkeley, CA, US

Re: Help planning for late 2016 trip

Post by Sierra Miguel » Sat Oct 17, 2015 6:44 pm

Wandering Daisy wrote:Two weeks also means a LONG ways out from a reliable weather report.
The backcountry ranger stations get daily reports by radio, and many of the hikers will have days-old reports from the TH or from Muir Ranch. Not sure what date the (summer) rangers close up shop.
A serious storm is more probable. Few of us would do a 2-week trip late season.
A storm of a few days seems to roll through in mid-October, just like this year. If you're only two days from the TH and getting recent reports, it's not hard to get out safely. There's also Lamarck Col for a quick and easy exit, since you won't have dogs.
do your south lake to north lake trip first (earlier) and then do an east-side trip to a basin on the east side so you do not have to cross the crest.
If you put your dogs up in Bishop or Mammoth, you could bring them on the second trip.








User avatar
Sierra Miguel
Topix Acquainted
Posts: 54
Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2014 10:15 pm
Experience: Level 3 Backpacker
Location: Berkeley, CA, US

Re: Help planning for late 2016 trip

Post by Sierra Miguel » Sat Oct 17, 2015 7:22 pm

kwyjibo wrote:Sorry if I have sounded harsh.
I don't think Wandering Daisy was referring to you, rather us beating up on the newbie.
As far as Sierra vs Sierras I also apologize.
:lol: Don't worry about that, either, unless you're a linguist. Someone else can probably point you to some long debate thread about it.
I firmly do believe that it is a dumb rule since the restrictions is based on arbitrary boundary lines. I completely agree they shouldn't be allowed in popular areas like Yosemite, but to allow them on one side of a line and not the other is silly.
The rules are made by jurisdiction, i.e., arbitrary boundary lines. But the boundaries aren't so arbitrary, as you'll see. I'd say there's a marked increase in natural beauty when you cross into the park. And that makes it popular. The North-South Lake loop is very popular. So is the JMT and the PCT. All pass through Evolution Valley.
I also mentioned pack animals because they are very destructive to the environment and unless they are fed a special diet
I believe a weed-free feed is required. (I don't use stock.)
We want to take lots of side excursions, and really explore the area.
Darwin Canyon/Bench, lower Dusy Basin. McGee Lakes, Black Giant, Desolation Lake, probably nice. Davis Lake not so much. Langille Peak from the south has some class 3, I hear. Here's one trip that I did this year.
I want to get a permit as soon as we can
Six months prior.
I never meant to start all these problems.
I don't think you've started any problems.

User avatar
Tom_H
Topix Expert
Posts: 789
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2012 1:11 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Camas, WA

Re: Help planning for late 2016 trip

Post by Tom_H » Sat Oct 17, 2015 7:40 pm

In my own opinion, it is already much too late in the season for two people to be making a 2 week trip into the backcountry. If you had at least 6 very strong people, all of whom have considerable summer backpacking experience, at least two of whom were trained experienced backcountry snowshoe and nordic ski packers, and everyone has all the gear necessary for snow survival and travel by nordic skis and snowshoes, and were going on a route where you could successfully travel in snow, then I would approve. Wandering Daisy and I were both professional guides with the same training, though I worked for a different outfitter and she has more experience than I.

The reason I recommend against it is because, even if you left right now, it is entirely possible that a major storm could bury you under many feet of snow at your farthest point into the backcountry. At this time of year and having only 2 people with your level of experience, you really need to plan shorter trips where you are always near enough to a trailhead that you could evacuate.

You can take dogs into Desolation, and there are a number of places in Deso where you can get cell coverage and thus weather reports. There is also a route that's about a week trip, passing around 28 lakes, but you parallel highway, and have about 3 places where you can turn onto a side trail and exit in an emergency.

Here is a map with a route that goes from Echo Lakes to Meeks Bay. Your emergency evacuation routes are marked in purple and your primary route in red. If you undertake a trip at this time of year, you should not do any random exploring. You should decide exactly where you are going, have a trip plan (print from here: http://reconn.org ), leave copies of the plan with several people, and notify all of them the moment you get out of the wilderness. If you are not back by a certain time, you need to have given them instructions re. how to contact SAR (search and rescue) for the area you are in, giving them a copy of your plan. If you do this route, take your cell phone. Keep it off to save the battery, but from the top of any pass or the top of Mt. Tallac, try to call your contact and let them know where you are, whether you are on schedule, any difficulties you are experiencing, etc.

Map: http://caltopo.com/m/0376
Last edited by Tom_H on Sat Oct 17, 2015 8:20 pm, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
rlown
Topix Docent
Posts: 7829
Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2007 5:00 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Wilton, CA

Re: Help planning for late 2016 trip

Post by rlown » Sat Oct 17, 2015 7:59 pm

She didn't request info for Deso, Tom. She actually doesn't need it if she makes her plan clear with her own maps and then tweaks it as she gets to a final plan. Doing fine so far as to find out what a new area means and the ramifications.

Guess it's a backup option..

User avatar
Wandering Daisy
Topix Docent
Posts: 5378
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 8:19 pm
Experience: N/A
Location: Fair Oaks CA (Sacramento area)
Contact:

Re: Help planning for late 2016 trip

Post by Wandering Daisy » Sat Oct 17, 2015 8:45 pm

I would not worry so much about permits. Late season (mid-Sept and later) and only 2 people, I doubt you would have trouble getting a first-come walk up permit. Flexibility is key in late season. Get a permit if it makes you feel certain, but do not hesitate to not use it and delay or do the trip earlier, based on weather conditions once Sept 2016 rolls around. Nobody knows what it will be like in a year from now.

I do not think the backcountry ranger stations are manned in October so I would not count on them for weather reports.

If by late season you mean mid-Sept or earlier, I think a side trip to Ionian Basin is well worth the effort. Black Giant Pass is the easiest. McGee Lakes also nice. Barrett Basin via Knapsack Col is also a great side-trip.

Personally, I would not do October, because the days are so short. However, as a young couple, perhaps lots of tent time is not a problem. :)

User avatar
ERIC
Your Humble Host & Forums Administrator
Your Humble Host & Forums Administrator
Posts: 3251
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 9:13 am
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: between the 916 and 661

Re: Help planning for late 2016 trip

Post by ERIC » Sat Oct 17, 2015 9:04 pm

A little chippy in here. The intelligent, prudent individuals I know here are all capable of stating an opinion without being negative towards those they are engaging. Inform, don't belittle. Please.
New members, please consider giving us an intro!
Follow us on Twitter @HighSierraTopix. Use hashtags #SIERRAPHILE #GotSierra? #GotMountains?
Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HighSierraTopix

User avatar
kwyjibo
Topix Novice
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2015 8:41 am
Experience: N/A

Re: Help planning for late 2016 trip

Post by kwyjibo » Sat Oct 17, 2015 9:40 pm

Thanks for some side route options. I'll definitely check them out. Eric this is for next year. We are no where near ready to go now.

The hardest part is due to our work we have little flexibility which is why we are starting plans now. From the sounds of it early-mid september will be the best time to go. We also carry a parameter with us to keep an eye on in coming storms. This is partially why we are planning for two weeks. If a storms rolls in for a day or two it doesn't matter if we are stuck in the tent since we aren't strapped for time.

We want a nice leisurely trip where if we see something cool we can hang out and watch it for a bit and take lots of photos. The idea is to enjoy nature and escape the chaos of city life.

User avatar
sparky
Topix Expert
Posts: 955
Joined: Tue Jul 20, 2010 10:01 am
Experience: N/A

Re: Help planning for late 2016 trip

Post by sparky » Sat Oct 17, 2015 10:20 pm

How about you do two trips? A one week backpack to evolution basin in the ssummer, then a one week car camping trip up and down the Eastern Sierra in early October for fall colors. The high meadows are much more scenic while green in early summer, and a south lake north lake loop 90% of the hike will be spent in areas where the only fall colors you will see is dry brown grass. In my opinion, if I could only do one trip in a year it would be in early summer right as the high country is melting out, longer days, creeks full, and flowers blooming. We just did our fall color car camping trip last weekend.

No need to fear the critters of the night.....except the blood thirsty mountain lions!

User avatar
Tom_H
Topix Expert
Posts: 789
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2012 1:11 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Camas, WA

Re: Help planning for late 2016 trip

Post by Tom_H » Sat Oct 17, 2015 10:24 pm

kwyjibo wrote:this is for next year.
My apologies for not noticing the 2016. I misunderstood that you were now planning for something between now and the end of this year (which really could be dicey). The places you are discussing should be wonderful in September. Good luck with your planning.

User avatar
Tom_H
Topix Expert
Posts: 789
Joined: Tue Jul 10, 2012 1:11 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Camas, WA

Re: Help planning for late 2016 trip

Post by Tom_H » Sat Oct 17, 2015 10:28 pm

sparky wrote:No need to fear the critters of the night.....except the blood thirsty mountain lions!
I've never heard of any in the high country? Foothills and lower Sierra, yea...for sure. Are you being serious, or are you trying to scare the poor girl!!! :eek:

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests