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Back from JMT

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  • Viraj
    Got back yesterday from our trip. We were not able to finish the whole trail due to a knee injury in my hiking group. No one could have planned for the
    Message 1 of 9 , Jul 25, 2011
      Got back yesterday from our trip. We were not able to finish the whole trail due to a knee injury in my hiking group. No one could have planned for the cummulative affect that hiking in the snow had on our anatomy.
      We got as far as Upper Palisades, but knew that the conditions over Mather Pass, where a ranger fell through 15 ft through a snow shelf (as well as other PCT'rs), was going to be too much for my friends knees. We backracked to Le Conte and hiked out to Bishop Pass where there was nono snow.
      Here's what I'll share:
      There is a lot of snow still on the passes, with Muir Pass being the worst. This Pass took all day to cross, but wasn't technical, just tedious. Coming down from Muir was also a slow go,as the ice is thinning in many parts, making postholing an energy drainer.
      However, we also encountered more dirt than I ever expected to see on the trail, given the reports this year. We didn't need a GPS after Silver Pass, but it sure was a help before then, as the trail was under snow and there were footprints everywhere (which ones to follow??).
      River crossings were the biggest challenge for me- Bear Creek almost swept me away.Best to take the time to look upstream (which we didn't)to find a safe spot. I was up to my chest (I'm 5'1') and had to have my buddies (men) carry my pack for me. Best of luck to you who are leaving soon.
    • ned@mountaineducation.org
      Thanks for the report, Viraj! Glad that you made it as far as you did. You probably learned quite a bit about just gettin around the high mountains when
      Message 2 of 9 , Jul 25, 2011
        Thanks for the report, Viraj! Glad that you made it as far as you did. You probably learned quite a bit about just gettin' around the high mountains when conditions aren't ideal (creek crossings, snow, etc.).
         
        Is snowline still about 10,000?
         

        "Just remember, Be Careful out there!"
         
        Ned Tibbits, Director
        Mountain Education
        South Lake Tahoe, Ca. 96150
            P: 888-996-8333
            F: 530-541-1456
            C: 530-721-1551
            http://www.mountaineducation.org
      • Barbara Karagosian
        Thanks for the report Viraj. I m glad you took the safe option. The snow sounds gnarly. Was the ranger OK? I wonder how many groups have got beyond Mather.
        Message 3 of 9 , Jul 25, 2011
          Thanks for the report Viraj. I'm glad you took the safe option. The snow sounds gnarly. Was the ranger OK? I wonder how many groups have got beyond Mather. There's going to be some interesting reports. 

           Barbara
          Typos by iPhone. 

          On Jul 25, 2011, at 8:46 AM, "Viraj" <birdnlady@...> wrote:

           

          Got back yesterday from our trip. We were not able to finish the whole trail due to a knee injury in my hiking group. No one could have planned for the cummulative affect that hiking in the snow had on our anatomy.
          We got as far as Upper Palisades, but knew that the conditions over Mather Pass, where a ranger fell through 15 ft through a snow shelf (as well as other PCT'rs), was going to be too much for my friends knees. We backracked to Le Conte and hiked out to Bishop Pass where there was nono snow.
          Here's what I'll share:
          There is a lot of snow still on the passes, with Muir Pass being the worst. This Pass took all day to cross, but wasn't technical, just tedious. Coming down from Muir was also a slow go,as the ice is thinning in many parts, making postholing an energy drainer.
          However, we also encountered more dirt than I ever expected to see on the trail, given the reports this year. We didn't need a GPS after Silver Pass, but it sure was a help before then, as the trail was under snow and there were footprints everywhere (which ones to follow??).
          River crossings were the biggest challenge for me- Bear Creek almost swept me away.Best to take the time to look upstream (which we didn't)to find a safe spot. I was up to my chest (I'm 5'1') and had to have my buddies (men) carry my pack for me. Best of luck to you who are leaving soon.

        • Srirama Dronamraju
          Viraj: Glad to hear that your whole team safely made it back. I postponed to August 9th starting from YV rather than TM and just dispatched MTR bucket. Thanks
          Message 4 of 9 , Jul 25, 2011
            Viraj:
            Glad to hear that your whole team safely made it back. I postponed to August 9th starting from YV rather than TM and just dispatched MTR bucket. Thanks for sharing the experience.  My backup plan is to quit where ever large snow trekking ( > 1 mile) and go to Onion V and complete the last part as it seems to be clear of snow incl Forester
            Krishna

            On Mon, Jul 25, 2011 at 10:46 AM, Viraj <birdnlady@...> wrote:
             

            Got back yesterday from our trip. We were not able to finish the whole trail due to a knee injury in my hiking group. No one could have planned for the cummulative affect that hiking in the snow had on our anatomy.
            We got as far as Upper Palisades, but knew that the conditions over Mather Pass, where a ranger fell through 15 ft through a snow shelf (as well as other PCT'rs), was going to be too much for my friends knees. We backracked to Le Conte and hiked out to Bishop Pass where there was nono snow.
            Here's what I'll share:
            There is a lot of snow still on the passes, with Muir Pass being the worst. This Pass took all day to cross, but wasn't technical, just tedious. Coming down from Muir was also a slow go,as the ice is thinning in many parts, making postholing an energy drainer.
            However, we also encountered more dirt than I ever expected to see on the trail, given the reports this year. We didn't need a GPS after Silver Pass, but it sure was a help before then, as the trail was under snow and there were footprints everywhere (which ones to follow??).
            River crossings were the biggest challenge for me- Bear Creek almost swept me away.Best to take the time to look upstream (which we didn't)to find a safe spot. I was up to my chest (I'm 5'1') and had to have my buddies (men) carry my pack for me. Best of luck to you who are leaving soon.


          • Debra Podesta
            Good to hear your report, I am planning on starting a portion of the JMT from South Lake (on August 14th)  to Florence Lake and was wondering what conditions
            Message 5 of 9 , Jul 25, 2011
              Good to hear your report, I am planning on starting a portion of the JMT from South Lake (on August 14th)  to Florence Lake and was wondering what conditions to expect on Bishop Pass and Muir Pass.
              Thanks
              Debra

              --- On Mon, 7/25/11, Srirama Dronamraju <krishna9012@...> wrote:

              From: Srirama Dronamraju <krishna9012@...>
              Subject: Re: [John Muir Trail] Back from JMT
              To: johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com
              Date: Monday, July 25, 2011, 9:11 AM

               
              Viraj:
              Glad to hear that your whole team safely made it back. I postponed to August 9th starting from YV rather than TM and just dispatched MTR bucket. Thanks for sharing the experience.  My backup plan is to quit where ever large snow trekking ( > 1 mile) and go to Onion V and complete the last part as it seems to be clear of snow incl Forester
              Krishna

              On Mon, Jul 25, 2011 at 10:46 AM, Viraj <birdnlady@...> wrote:
               
              Got back yesterday from our trip. We were not able to finish the whole trail due to a knee injury in my hiking group. No one could have planned for the cummulative affect that hiking in the snow had on our anatomy.
              We got as far as Upper Palisades, but knew that the conditions over Mather Pass, where a ranger fell through 15 ft through a snow shelf (as well as other PCT'rs), was going to be too much for my friends knees. We backracked to Le Conte and hiked out to Bishop Pass where there was nono snow.
              Here's what I'll share:
              There is a lot of snow still on the passes, with Muir Pass being the worst. This Pass took all day to cross, but wasn't technical, just tedious. Coming down from Muir was also a slow go,as the ice is thinning in many parts, making postholing an energy drainer.
              However, we also encountered more dirt than I ever expected to see on the trail, given the reports this year. We didn't need a GPS after Silver Pass, but it sure was a help before then, as the trail was under snow and there were footprints everywhere (which ones to follow??).
              River crossings were the biggest challenge for me- Bear Creek almost swept me away.Best to take the time to look upstream (which we didn't)to find a safe spot. I was up to my chest (I'm 5'1') and had to have my buddies (men) carry my pack for me. Best of luck to you who are leaving soon.


            • James
              Viraj, Thanks for the report. I was also wondering about the conditions out from LeConte canyon and over Bishop pass? I am planning to get onto the JMT in
              Message 6 of 9 , Jul 28, 2011
                Viraj,

                Thanks for the report. I was also wondering about the conditions out from LeConte canyon and over Bishop pass? I am planning to get onto the JMT in Leconte canyon by coming over Bishop pass from South Lake in about 2 weeks. Based on the SEKI trail conditions report, I wasn't expecting you to say there was no snow.

                http://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/trailcond.htm

                Thanks
                James
              • Debra Podesta
                I will be doing the very same thing, leaving Aug 14th from South Lake, wondering if by then the snow will still require an ice axe or whippet.... Debra ...
                Message 7 of 9 , Jul 28, 2011
                  I will be doing the very same thing, leaving Aug 14th from South Lake, wondering if by then the snow will still require an ice axe or whippet....
                  Debra

                  --- On Thu, 7/28/11, James <lakey173@...> wrote:

                  From: James <lakey173@...>
                  Subject: Re: [John Muir Trail] Back from JMT
                  To: johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com
                  Date: Thursday, July 28, 2011, 5:06 AM

                   
                  Viraj,

                  Thanks for the report. I was also wondering about the conditions out from LeConte canyon and over Bishop pass? I am planning to get onto the JMT in Leconte canyon by coming over Bishop pass from South Lake in about 2 weeks. Based on the SEKI trail conditions report, I wasn't expecting you to say there was no snow.

                  http://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/trailcond.htm

                  Thanks
                  James

                • ned@mountaineducation.org
                  As emergency medical personnel will tell you, a fall from a height of a body length or two is considered a serious spinal injury event. Add speed to that, say
                  Message 8 of 9 , Jul 28, 2011
                    As emergency medical personnel will tell you, a fall from a height of a body length or two is considered a serious spinal injury event. Add speed to that, say while downhill skiing, and you have to potential for a head injury that will get you flown off the mountain (to your great expense).
                     
                    With a few miles of snow on either sides of the sierra passes, you can bet that you will have snow well into August. It's beginning to look like September will be the month where "summer" finally hits the high country above 10,500. Be aware, also, that more snow will always be where the sun least shines, on north sides and in the trees.
                     
                    Go prepared.
                    Take the Whippet
                     

                    "Just remember, Be Careful out there!"
                     
                    Ned Tibbits, Director
                    Mountain Education
                    South Lake Tahoe, Ca. 96150
                        P: 888-996-8333
                        F: 530-541-1456
                        C: 530-721-1551
                        http://www.mountaineducation.org
                  • Viral Ward
                    James, The trail from South Lake to Le Conte was virtually free of snow. I doubt that you will have any trouble on either side, though there were a few more
                    Message 9 of 9 , Jul 28, 2011
                      James,
                      The trail from South Lake to Le Conte was virtually free of snow. I doubt that you will have any trouble on either side, though there were a few more snow fields dropping into Dusy Basin. Le Conte Canyon was breathtaking! Best flowers we saw the whole trip. And all dirt to Upper Pallisades including Golden Staircase.


                      Sent from my iPad

                      On Jul 28, 2011, at 5:06 AM, "James" <lakey173@...> wrote:

                       

                      Viraj,

                      Thanks for the report. I was also wondering about the conditions out from LeConte canyon and over Bishop pass? I am planning to get onto the JMT in Leconte canyon by coming over Bishop pass from South Lake in about 2 weeks. Based on the SEKI trail conditions report, I wasn't expecting you to say there was no snow.

                      http://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/trailcond.htm

                      Thanks
                      James

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