Winter - Badger Pass to Glacier Point
- Since Bob's note about his winter trip didn't have a topic, and people might want to find it someday, I'm retitling it and adding some more info:
On Sat, Jan 29, 2011 at 10:19 AM, robert shattuck <bobolonius@...> wrote:I just got back from three days in yosemite. great when no one is there. We did a two night ski up to glacier point, which is usually swarming with a million people, but we had it to ourselves.
See his pics
Nice pics, Bob! As the pics show, the days can be balmy.
I can confirm Bob's observation that a trip to Glacier Pt that involves an overnight is likely to get you the place to yourself. There are XC skiers who come in and out in a day (21 mile RT), so around the middle of the day, you'll probably have some fit-looking company. But it's spectacular in the early morning or at twilight/sunset and it's likely you'll be alone at that time of day, or at least able to find an area where you can't see/hear any other folks. If this is what you want, however, try to avoid nights where there are group ski events into Glacier Point Hut -- the summertime visitor center (pic 20 in Bob's album) becomes a hostel in the winter, but open only to groups with reservations. I think you could e-mail this address to find out if the hut is reserved for the night(s) you are contemplating:
On the other hand, if you want to go in with a group and sleep in the hut, see here:
Not cheap, but if you haven't done it before, this would be a good way to start.
10.5 miles each way. Some mild elevation changes. Groomed track on the road (closed to vehicles in the winter). Snowshoers also use the road and should avoid the tracks. Right now, with the snow as consolidated as it is, you can just walk the road in boots crunching on the snow. You use the snowshoes only when you get off the road (or in the case of a fresh snow). Campsites everywhere. Permits readily available at Badger Pass ranger station. Grab flowing water where you can, like Bridalveil Creek, but you will probably need to melt snow for much of your water, which requires a prodigious amount of fuel. (Or even your other liquid refreshments - see Bob's pic 31). If you do it solo bring a good book on an MP3 player - those nights are LONG!
Bob's pics will give you a great idea of what you will encounter. I did it a few years ago with just a REI minimalist GoreTex bivy. I wouldn't recommend that. Marmot Mountain in Berkeley rents snowshoes, single-wall 4-season tents and great 8000-down 0 degree (and minus 20, I think) sleeping bags. So you got no excuse not to do it.
There will be good night starwatching (cloud cover permitting) on the nights surrounding the new moon - late moonrise - Feb 3 and March 3, if I remember right.
On Feb 28 to March 4 I'm snowshoeing into Ostrander Hut, which is accessed on the same road but a bit off on a marked sidetrail going up Bridalveil Creek. Let me know if we can say hello to each other.
For those who haven't melted snow, most important thing to remember is to start with some liquid water in the pot and add snow a bit at a time. Otherwise the snow essentially insulates itself from the heat.