Conditions Report (8/2 - 8/4 2019): Palisade Basin, Muir/Ionian area, and Darwin area passes

Questions and reports related to Sierra Nevada current and forecast conditions, as well as general precautions and safety information. Trail conditions, fire/smoke reports, mosquito reports, weather and snow conditions, stream crossing information, and more.
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notis
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Conditions Report (8/2 - 8/4 2019): Palisade Basin, Muir/Ionian area, and Darwin area passes

Post by notis » Sun Aug 11, 2019 11:38 am

I consider this a half-effort trip report. So much so that I can't even call it that! A conditions report. I know that if I wait to perfect my trip report, it'll be too far removed, and these conditions pics I took for you fine folks won't be worth much. Please use this little scouting effort and ask questions if needed. Many thanks for what this community does! (And I promise to get old TR's up! ...Think I'm just going to start a website.)

Gear: trekking poles and Altra Lone Peak 4s. No ice axe or microspikes.

Trip: South Lake - Thunderbolt Pass - Knapsack Pass - Dusy Basin - JMT - Black Giant area/Muir Pass - Darwin Bench - Lamarck Col - North Lake

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Thunderbolt Pass

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About 2/3 way up Thunderbolt, looking back to Upper Dusy

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View into Palisade Basin from Thunderbolt Pass

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View of Black Giant Pass

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Lake below Black Giant Pass. Steep snowfield leading to lake would require a careful traverse from L-R (S to N) here to avoid it. I didn't have time to try it and/or Black Giant.

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Nietzsche Col--corniced, it seemed.

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I think this is Wanda Pass area

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Out of focus, but looking at Davis Lake Pass.

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Looking at the likely start of approach to Darwin Col from Darwin Canyon

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View of entire approach to Darwin Col--snowless low point right of the peaklet in the center.

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View peering at Darwin Col, the snowless low point to the right of the small peaklet left of center.

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Obligatory Lamarck Col shot--boot pack on the left of the snowfield.








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Bishop_Bob
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Re: Conditions Report (8/2 - 8/4 2019): Palisade Basin, Muir/Ionian area, and Darwin area passes

Post by Bishop_Bob » Mon Aug 12, 2019 6:08 am

Thanks for the pic's! Did you have any difficulty traveling the section from JMT to Darwin Bench?

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Re: Conditions Report (8/2 - 8/4 2019): Palisade Basin, Muir/Ionian area, and Darwin area passes

Post by notis » Mon Aug 12, 2019 9:52 am

No difficulty at all in that section--no snow and never got my feet wet. No real difficulty on the trip, although the sun cups around the Black Giant area weren't a joy ride.

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Re: Conditions Report (8/2 - 8/4 2019): Palisade Basin, Muir/Ionian area, and Darwin area passes

Post by Bishop_Bob » Mon Aug 12, 2019 9:54 am

Great! I appreciate the info. I'm heading that way on Thursday.

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notis
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Re: Conditions Report (8/2 - 8/4 2019): Palisade Basin, Muir/Ionian area, and Darwin area passes

Post by notis » Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:11 am

It's SO beautiful right now. Warm, and the lingering snow eludes some bonus "ooos and aahs" when admiring the landscape. (But the skeeters are just terrible!)

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Re: Conditions Report (8/2 - 8/4 2019): Palisade Basin, Muir/Ionian area, and Darwin area passes

Post by Bishop_Bob » Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:53 am

notis wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:11 am
(But the skeeters are just terrible!)
Selfishly, I'd like the "gene drive" strategy to be deployed in the Sierra to collapse the mosquito population. But I assume that would wreak havoc with the ecosystem.

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Re: Conditions Report (8/2 - 8/4 2019): Palisade Basin, Muir/Ionian area, and Darwin area passes

Post by jeremiahkim » Sun Aug 18, 2019 11:28 am

Thanks for the report. Headed that way in the next few weeks and getting excited (not for the mosquitos, however).

What time in the day did you hit the east side of Lamarck?

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notis
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Re: Conditions Report (8/2 - 8/4 2019): Palisade Basin, Muir/Ionian area, and Darwin area passes

Post by notis » Sun Aug 18, 2019 2:26 pm

Hope it helps! I topped out right around 12 or 1230 and went down the east side from there. Snow was sticky and just trekking poles and caution were needed coming down.

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Re: Conditions Report (8/2 - 8/4 2019): Palisade Basin, Muir/Ionian area, and Darwin area passes

Post by jdille » Sun Aug 18, 2019 6:18 pm

This is great! Thanks for the report. Also heading that next week. Not looking forward to the skeeters, but getting excited seeing your photos!

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Re: Conditions Report (8/2 - 8/4 2019): Palisade Basin, Muir/Ionian area, and Darwin area passes

Post by notis » Sun Aug 18, 2019 7:40 pm

Oh man, and this is only a couple! It was so beautiful I took about 100 a day that I have to sort through haha.

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