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High Sierra Trail
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“Leaving packs at trail crest is fairly common. I have'nt heard of any problems with thief. And I thinks its too high for marmots.”
“I've only day hiked Whitney, but I've see people's backpacks sitting there waiting for their owners to come back up at the junction. I guess it's not much different than leaving your tent full of stuff and going off on a day hike, which I do all the time in the Sierra. If someone takes your pack, they'll have to carry it down from 13,000 feet elevation all those miles to the Portal, so they'd be moving slow and you'd catch up with them and be able to take your pack back and thank them for carrying it.”
“Leave you packs just passed Trail Crest at a place some call the Eagle's Nest junction. There's a great place there where backpackers drop 'em and go. We did that when I did the HST and they weren't tampered with. You shouldn't have a problem.”
“I've left my pack there a few times. Nothing to really worry about. I do remove my camera, and other valuables for the peak journey though. But, yes, I've seen marmots up there.”
“Ya it was more the critters I was thinking about than a possible theft issue. I thought it may a bit high for marmots too, but it's never too high for other rodents”
“Well, I'm sure by now you all have heard about the tunnel collapse on the HST above Lake Hamilton this winter. I've just received word that the reroute has been completed. Here's a pic of the excellent work the trail crew performed. Lets give a great big thanks to those volunteers!!!
“Oh thanks, I'll be on that trail the week after this trip, that pic is real comforting :P”
“I like it!”
We left our packs at Trail Crest on a very busy day along with many other people. Pretty much a standard thing, but I would leave any valuables just in case.
“Rockman thank you for posting that picture! I had no idea about the tunnel.
That picture is crazy!! Do you know how many feet that section is? And how wide..looks like maybe 18" wide?
I tried to find something that talks about this doing a google search, and found nothing..do you have a link that tells about this reroute section?”
“Holy Cow, Rockman! Is that for real?????? If so, how long does one have to travel that to solid ground again?”
“Rockman, that is BS. Right?
At least, the rock wall where the tunnel is/was didn't look like that last time I was there. I suppose the whole trail sheared off. Yeah. You better be kidding.”
“The beams look to weathered and cracked for this to be newly built. The chains and anchor pins look like they have been there for quite awhile. Also, looking at pictures of the tunnel this view looks different. Rockman you have to be joking, I sure hope.
What time do we want to met up at Creasant Meadow, on Saturday morning, to start the hike?”
“How about 10 am. We only have 9 miles that day, and as things go, it should be pretty easy. But, people can start earlier. I'm sure the rangers would want everyone to hear their talk about bears, etc. but I think we all get the point.
One thing that I'm thinking is if we can crank out a couple of more miles on the third day (starting at Big Hamilton Lake, scheduled 5.9 miles) to make Day 4 milage alittle less and out arrival into Kern Hot Spring earlier. With that said, we may hit snow after Big Hamilton. We'll see.
Remember to send out clean duds sometime next week.”
Confirming a few details.....
“Cubfan, did shiprunner and I ever confirm with you that we would share your campsite at Crescent Meadows?
Geologyguy, do you still have a queen bed available at Dow Villa? Shiprunner and I could share that bed if that works for you. I have so much going on in my life this year, I have barely been able to focus on this trip, and I never made a reservation at the Dow. Not sure if they have any rooms available, but if it is ok with you (and shiprunner,) we'll just crash in your room that night and split the cost.
Karen, our arrival flight is Northwest Airlines # 8889, due in from Cincinnati (CVG) to SFO at 10:44 AM PDT. I will email you my cell phone number and would like to have yours. Please email me about where we should find you when we get off of the plane.
Bear canisters - do I remember correctly that we are borrowing one from Karen, one from Aussie?
Who can I send money to for shuttles/permits?
All of you people are so wonderful....can't wait to see you all and bust a gut in them mountains!!!”
“LMAO @ Rockman!
“Fritz, I think Rockman is crashing in my room (but if you can talk him into 3 in a bed, well...). Contact the Dow Villa for availble rooms, I think Mari just got hers. As for money for permit/shuttle, we will settle that later. The shuttle fee is depend on how many people show, but figure about $50 pp.”
“Hey Fritz, yes you did confirm that you 2 would be sharing the campsite. I am picking up Gonzo at the airport, he has also reserved a campsite since there is only 2 tents allowed per site.”
“Ok, Rockman is safe. I just reserved a room for shiprunner and me. :)”
“Fritz, do e-mail me your itinerary. Maybe you already did since I'm still at work. I'll e-mail back my cell number, etc. I found my other Garcia, so I'm loaning them both to you and Aussie won't be bringing one.”
“Take a look at Sandyann's Whitney trip report.
“Saw her post earlier, and it is sobering. However, in the three weeks until we get to that point hopefully the upper part of the switchbacks will be clear. The snow chute looks nasty.”
“I just got back from a trip in the sierras(Banner/Ritter) and there was snow all over the place. JMT was burried under snow at places and a few of the lakes were frozen over. It snowed on Friday night and night time temps were in the 20's. Don't mean to scare you, but have it in mind when you pack warm clothes. Hey but there were no mosquitos.”
“hrez - Where did you go, exactly?”
major "What if?" question
“Just to cover all our bases and CYA, here's a question. If somewhere along the trail the group decides that Whitney is to dangerous (big what if, maybe some info from other hikers, or a snow storm comes in, or aliens blow up Whitney), what are our next exit trailheads that can still get us to Lone Pine? Are they through Shepherd Pass and/or New Army Pass?”
“That is a good question. But to answer the question I think New Army or Cottonwood Pass would be the nearest to the Whitney exit. However, the shuttle service people can pick us up anywhere and take us to Lone Pine. My question is what if we find out that there's an S load of snow from Keweah Gap down to Kern River, or anyting above 9,000 feet which is the current snow level. Do we bail, or do we march through snow which may be difficult due to snowcupping or soft conditions.
I think we'll get a better picture in a couple of days after the rangers to into the backcountry.
With that said, I still think there's enough time for snow to melt and trail condition improve on our section. Additionally, there seems to be alot of traffic up to Whitney, and more than likley the switchbacks will be open. I would be concerned with some of the other passes such as Forester and Shepard. Forester is a beast even in good conditions.”
I attempted Banner and Ritter using Lake Ediza as a base camp. Our route was Mammoth Lakes-Agnew meadows-River trail-Shadow lake-JMT north-Lake Ediza...
If I figure it out how, I'll post a few pictures too.
I'm not concerend about passes and snow field in our HST trip. Snow was melting and softening FAST and traveling later in the day was slow, but not dengerous.
last edited: 6/21/05 1:08:10 PM”
“Dynoking21 posted a report on Shepherd Pass and Williamson from his 6/15 trip on the summitpost message board. It's sounding pretty good. We're set to head up there on July 1st, but we will be carrying ice axes and crampons.
Here's the summitpost thread on Williamson:
Also more info on the eastside here:
last edited: 6/22/05 12:06:06 AM”
“It sure is a hard call on what gear is needed right now out there. The crampons and ice axe are more weight to struggle with - especially if they aren't needed, but they could come in handy too.”
“Whoa, I totally forgot I need a permit. Does somebody have an extra spot on their permit for little ol' me?
“Karen, Jerry's still going right? Or is he still battling the persistant chest cold he had some time back?
Tell him to post more! LOL”
“Rock, Jerry's well, even feisty. I told him to post more. He actually went to TT all by himself one day and asked me about the Sierra Rendezvous. He was pleased to hear he'd be on it. As for permits, you could probably 'float.'
Gonzo, Cubfan, I hope Jerry and I 'reserved' a tent space at the campsite...... Did we?
Matt, I'm with you that we shouldn't proceed if it's not safe, but there are 2+ weeks of melt still. It'll be good to see what the backcountry rangers say.”
you and jerry are welcome to share my campsite....
won't be long now....i am really starting to get excited!!”
“what campsite are you at and how many people are going to be there?
we are thinking of heading out Fri”
“Thanks, Gonzo. We'll be there before dark.”
FRIDAY NIGHT AT LODGEPOLE
“Gonzo and I have both reserved a campsite in Lodgepole. However, it looks like both of these sites are full. There is a limit of 2 tents per site and there are going to be 6 of us already there. The group is me (cubfan), Gonzo, Wannabp, Landscaper, Fritz and Shiprunner. If anyone else is coming up friday night they will need to reserve another campsite. We have sites #43 and #45.
1 more week, I cannot believe the trip is almost here. Let the good times begin.”
“i called lodgepole and they are full-they say there are several other "first come.." camp sites that we will try for but I think rockman, hrez13 and I are coming up on fri. so maybe we can hook up sometime that eve
this is my first backpacking trip so i am really excited!”
“Mari, this being a holiday weekend, you guys might want to get up there early to get one of the first come camp sites. I am not sure if those are in Lodgepole or somewhere down the mountain. You guys are gladly welcome to join us at our camp sites for alittle pre-hiking party.
I will probably bring some beer and who knows what else. Not sure what we will do for dinner. Might just bring some sandwiches or whatever. Whoever is going to camp out Friday night make suggestions.”
“water!?!? I think you mean firewater! :0”
Spa and pool at the Dow Villa
“are open around the clock, according to the website. We're sending our swimsuits!”
“Hmmm.... open around the clock... that could be dangerous
From Dow Villa website
“Our year-round hot bubbly spa and seasonally-heated pool are available around the clock for our motel and hotel guests. From there you will enjoy a spectacular view of the Sierra Nevada Range.
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