2015 Backcountry Conditions Reports

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.
Post Reply
User avatar
ERIC
Your Humble Host & Forums Administrator
Your Humble Host & Forums Administrator
Posts: 3130
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 9:13 am
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: between the 916 and 661

2015 Backcountry Conditions Reports

Post by ERIC » Wed Feb 04, 2015 8:46 pm

To quote maverick from last season:
maverick wrote:This is not a place to post trip reports, but a place for members to post a quick update on conditions experienced in the back-country on recent trips. Posting photo's of difficult sections encountered is encouraged.
This will allow other members considering visiting, or traveling, through the same location a heads up on difficult sections, so they can plan/prepare or re-route accordingly.

This is meant to be a quick reference for members, with up to date information, saving time from having to look through numerous trip reports to gather pertinent information for an upcoming trip. Just paste the form below into you post, and fill out the info.

Please do not ask questions about a particular area or post anything but a report
in this thread.
Thanks

In the "Subject" above (title of post) section please post the area you visited, include
the dates.


Route taken:

Difficult section encountered:

Special equipment needed/used:

Possible alternative routes:

SAMPLE:

Subject: Rae Lakes-Lake Reflection-Sphinx Lakes 7/12/12 to 7/18/12

Route: Roads End-Upper Paradise Valley-Rae Lakes-Glen Pass-Junction Meadow-Lake
Reflection-Longley Pass-Cinder Col-Sphinx Col-Sphinx Lakes-Roads End

Difficult section encountered on this trip:
- Lost of snow on northern side of Glen Pass icy in the morning hours.
- Bubbs Creek crossing very difficult, found the best crossing point 400 yards west
of the usual low water crossing section.
- Big cornice encountered on Longley Pass, which was bypass by climbing rocky
section north of the pass (class 3).

Special equipment needed/used:
- Ice Axe
- Crampons
- Trekking Poles

Possible alternative routes:
- When crossing Bubb's, I notice a section about 100 yards further west that looked
much easier.
- Should have bypassed the cornice on the southern side, route looked barely class 2.


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
markskor
Founding Member & Forums Administrator
Founding Member & Forums Administrator
Posts: 2272
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 5:41 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Mammoth Lakes

Re: 2015 Backcountry Conditions Reports

Post by markskor » Thu Feb 12, 2015 6:44 pm

Just got back from a quick day hike up around the Mammoth Lakes....Mary and looking down at Twin.
Just to let you all know how things looked today at 9,000 feet.
BTW, was 60º...awesome.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Mountainman who swims with trout

User avatar
The Other Tom
Founding Member
Posts: 790
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2005 6:06 pm
Experience: N/A
Location: Upstate South Carolina

Re: 2015 Backcountry Conditions Reports

Post by The Other Tom » Fri Feb 13, 2015 5:12 am

Thanks Mark. So maybe 6" of snow ?

User avatar
gary c.
Topix Fanatic
Posts: 1191
Joined: Tue Jan 24, 2006 4:56 pm
Experience: N/A
Location: Lancaster, CA

Not Backcountry but From Glacier Point

Post by gary c. » Tue Mar 31, 2015 3:04 pm

Spent the weekend in Yosemite Valley. The Merced is running better than I expected and they opened the road to Glacier Point on Saturday. Saw quite a few backpackers heading in when we hiked the Mist Trail on Saturday. No snow anyplace except for in the culvert along to road to GP and a few small patches seen in shady areas. Here is what it looked like heading into the backcountry from GP.

Image

Image
"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
-- Lionel Terray

User avatar
AlmostThere
Topix Addict
Posts: 2510
Joined: Wed Jun 24, 2009 4:38 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

Chilnualna Falls/Buena Vista Loop March 29 - 31

Post by AlmostThere » Tue Mar 31, 2015 3:49 pm

Chilnualna Falls trail to the junction is dry as a bone. The creek is running like it's July. :(

We headed up to Grouse/Crescent Lakes and the trail was dry, only a couple pair of boot prints belonging to a couple lads who were on their way out - they told us the snowshoes on their packs came in handy over the Buena Vista crest.

We stayed a night at Crescent and woke to frost. Day hiked to Johnson and started to have to walk across long patches of snow (it was that or wade through the boggy meadows). Beyond Johnson Lake there started to be larger patches of the sort that are melting from the underside and are actually thin bridges of snow over muddy ponds. We turned around at that point. We had a few mosquito attacks at Johnson. Of course - that's where the snowmelt was. Below that point, we saw a few skeeters but nary a bite. The bees were more of a nuisance - they were drawn by all the manzanita blooms and stuck around to pester us in our bright colored sweat-drenched shirts.

Saw one marmot at Chilnualna Falls on the granite - many squirrels in the forest searching around.

Lower down, the meadows are frightfully dry and ugly.

Very few people on the trails other than day hikers who rarely make it all the way to the falls.

User avatar
balzaccom
Topix Fanatic
Posts: 1672
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2008 9:22 pm
Experience: N/A

Re: 2015 Backcountry Conditions Reports

Post by balzaccom » Sun Apr 05, 2015 7:47 am

Hey AT--we were in the same area just a few days later. Hiked in from the Ostrander Lake Trailhead, since Glacier Point Road is now open. Only tiny patches of snow visible all the way to Grouse Lake, where we camped. Not a single mosquito--but it was cold! Water frozen in our bottles overnight. We decided we'd rather sleep in a warm cabin than a snowbank near Buena Vista Lake...so headed back out the next day.

Here's a shot of Chilnualna Creek, to give you an idea of the flow:

Image

As some of the first people on the trail, we saw a lot of downed trees, but nothing that kept us from staying the course.

Now let's hope that this next week brings us tons of rain and snow...
Balzaccom

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

User avatar
ExploreABitMore
Topix Regular
Posts: 138
Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2007 2:38 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Ridgecrest, CA
Contact:

Re: 2015 Backcountry Conditions Reports

Post by ExploreABitMore » Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:24 pm

Don't know it this will be as helpful now, since it sounds like a storm may have just dumped up to 2 feet of snow, but here is what Rae Lakes Basin looked like last weekend from Mount Rixford. Not much snow on the route, and look pretty slim to the North here, as well.

If it stays warm, it just might look like this again soon, since the new stuff will probably melt off pretty fast. But, here's hoping for some more storms!

Image
Sierra Nevada, Mojave Desert, Night Sky Photography: http://www.evanthomasphoto.com/

User avatar
tomba
Topix Regular
Posts: 275
Joined: Sat Jun 18, 2011 12:50 pm
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Bay Area

Re: 2015 Backcountry Conditions Reports

Post by tomba » Thu Apr 09, 2015 10:19 pm

It is helpful. Thank you.
-- Found trash? Please pack it out. Thank you.

User avatar
TehipiteTom
Founding Member
Posts: 877
Joined: Thu Aug 24, 2006 8:42 am
Experience: Level 4 Explorer

Re: 2015 Backcountry Conditions Reports

Post by TehipiteTom » Sun Apr 19, 2015 10:55 am

Got a shot of Emigrant Wilderness flying out to Philadelphia on Wednesday. There's a whole lot more granite showing than snow.
Image

Couple more photos here.

User avatar
Gazelle
Topix Regular
Posts: 287
Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2012 11:01 am
Experience: Level 4 Explorer
Location: Donner Summit CA

Re: 2015 Backcountry Conditions Reports

Post by Gazelle » Sun Apr 19, 2015 3:23 pm

From one of the snow survey people a good read

http://sustainableplay.com/winter-of-his-disbelief/

looks like Ritter and banner on memorial day weekend might happen

Kristine
The woman who follows the crowd will usually go no further than the crowd. The woman who walks alone is likely to find herself in places no one has ever been before. Albert Einstein

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests