What a wonderful story about doing the JMT part of the PCT in the early season, 2011
Sunshine in the Sierra
Everything about the Sierra portion of the PCT was harder this year. Balls and Sunshine faced record-setting snow, low food, dangerous water crossings, injuries, and a markedly slower pace.Just another reason your best subscription for reading/researching your JMT hike is a subscription to BPL.
by Eric Gjonnes | 2011-11-08 00:00:00-07
BackpackingLight sponsored a father/daughter team on their PCT thru-hike in the summer of 2011.This is part 3, the Sierra portion of the PCT. I see Ned posted some comments there. Wonderful journal, eh, Ned?-------------------------------------------------
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- The rewards of snow-hiking the JMT/PCT are almost beyond mention. Even just a little snow so transforms the granite landscape of the sierra, you scarcely recognize where you are, it is so beautiful and quiet. No bears, no bugs, no dirt, no rangers--doesn't get much better than that! And if you're really good at skiing like Dittli, you can ski it, too! All the more fun!Seriously, snow-hiking in "early season" is awesome and quite easy. Plan to go slow, at about 8 or 10 miles/day (because you only move along at 1 mph!), dress warmly, eat twice what you'd need during a summer hike of the same terrain, don't get wet, be wise around creeks and lakes, know how to navigate over snow, know how to self-arrest, be experienced with crampons (Kahtoola-style) and ice axe, and include hot meals. This is not the time to go ultralight. Expect a snow storm that may dump a foot or three (if so, stay put in camp an extra day). Avalanches are unlikely, but know how to read the snow to avoid them. Carry extra gloves and socks.
"Just remember, Be Careful out there!"Ned Tibbits, Director
South Lake Tahoe, Ca. 96150