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Re: Is Mid-September too late to start?

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  • dmwenstrup
    Thanks for the input everyone! Based on everyone s input, I m going to try to pull my departure time up as close to the beginning of September as possible.
    Message 1 of 9 , Feb 1, 2009
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      Thanks for the input everyone!

      Based on everyone's input, I'm going to try to pull my departure
      time up as close to the beginning of September as possible.

      Hmdsierra -
      If you don't mind, I have a few questions regarding when you went
      at the beginning of September:
      1) Were the resorts closed already?
      2) What kind of daytime and nighttime temperatures did you
      experience?
      3) Would you consider bringing an ice ax during that time?
      4) What was the rating on the bag you brought? Was it warm enough?
      5) Anything other special equipment you would suggest for that
      time of the year?

      Thanks!
      Kermit






      --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, hmdsierra <no_reply@...> wrote:
      >
      > Let me add that my friend and I finished the south half JMT, South
      Lk
      > to Whitney, starting the last few days of Aug and finishing near
      mid
      > Sept. Saw a few people, 30 or so until Whitney, and had nice
      weather
      > all the time. It was actually warmer at Hitchcock Lks that it was
      in
      > Aug of another year. Very cold at night, streams sometimes freeze
      and
      > one year the lakes were ecing over.
      >
      > --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, hmdsierra <no_reply@> wrote:
      > >
      > > It can be iffy so be prepared to wait out a storm or bail out.
      My
      > > friend and I made many trips in October, usually the second week
      but I
      > > have been out past the 25th. there is usually a small storm the
      first
      > > week of October. Almost all our trips were sunny and not too
      cool
      > > during the day. One year we met a couple of people doing the
      whole
      > > trail while we were in LeConte at Dusy Ck. Pne year another
      fried and
      > > I did the Kern river and had one night of snow at Kern Hot
      Spring.
      > > Another year I went solo the middle of October and had a very
      light
      > > dusting of snow the second night. I came odut to Roads End in
      Kings
      > > Canyon and while the sun was shining when I got there by the
      time my
      > > wife arrived to get me there was about six inches ow white on the
      > > ground and still coming down. The snow level was way down into
      the
      > > foothills and it rained hard all the way home and continued the
      next
      > > day. While I was coming out I met several people going in. At
      the
      > > Ranger Station I talked to a guy who was going in with friends
      and he
      > > decided to bail.
      > >
      > > --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, "dmwenstrup" <dmwenstrup@>
      wrote:
      > > >
      > > >
      > > > Hello Everyone -
      > > >
      > > > Good or bad, the economy is claiming me as its next victim.
      I was
      > > > notified that my position is being eliminated at the end of
      August.
      > > > Instead of jumping right into another job, I'm going to take
      a few
      > > > months off, get in some serious bag nights and try to screw my
      head
      > > > back on straight.
      > > > I've always wanted to thru-hike the JMT so what better time.
      > > >
      > > > With all that said, I probably will not be able to start the
      trail
      > > > until mid-September. Worse case towards the end of September.
      I'm
      > > > planning on solo hiking and I'll be going south.
      > > >
      > > > Is that too late to start? I don't want to rush so I'm
      giving
      > > > myself 25-30 days.
      > > >
      > > > Thanks for all your advice in advance!
      > > >
      > > > Kermit
      > > >
      > >
      >
    • hmdsierra
      ... I don t know. We did not resupply and the resorts are north of where we started, South Lake. When we did the whole trail in 82 our only resupply was at
      Message 2 of 9 , Feb 1, 2009
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        --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, "dmwenstrup" <dmwenstrup@...> wrote:

        > Hmdsierra -
        > If you don't mind, I have a few questions regarding when you went
        > at the beginning of September:

        > 1) Were the resorts closed already?

        I don't know. We did not resupply and the resorts are north of where
        we started, South Lake. When we did the whole trail in '82 our only
        resupply was at Red's Mdw. We had intended on no more stops after
        that. When my friend dropped out my son and I took two weeks of food
        with the idea that my friend would rejoin us at Vidette Mdw. His knee
        was still bothering him and he and his wife brought us more than
        enough food to finish the 4 1/2 days we had left but went back out.

        > 2) What kind of daytime and nighttime temperatures did you
        > experience?

        Days are very comfortable even in October. One late Oct trip was
        about the coldest I've had and daytime temps were 50 t0 55 F.
        Nighttime temps are cold enough to freeze some ice on slow moving
        creeks most Octobers. We were at McClure Mdw in mid October and my
        friend commented that it couldn't be Fall because the creek didn't
        freeze over.

        > 3) Would you consider bringing an ice ax during that time?

        No.

        > 4) What was the rating on the bag you brought? Was it warm enough?

        I take an Army down bag in the Fall and have only gotten cold feet one
        night when I was sleeping on a slope that pushed my feet to the
        bottom. The only other time I was the least bit chilly in it was
        Upper Tuolumne Mdw right after a storm. There was a bit of snow and
        puddles had 3/4 inch of ice at 11AM. I wore my coat to bed for the
        only time. Once settled in I was warm but we had arrived when it was
        in the shade and I was chilly until bedtime. That was the trip where
        Rush Ck was frozen over in the morning but I was not even cool there.

        > 5) Anything other special equipment you would suggest for that
        > time of the year?

        I always take a ten but usually sleep out unless the weather is
        raining or snowing. We did use it above timberline for the wind
        protection. I lie the Sierra all seasons but my friend thinks Fall,
        October, is best. I agree with him that it is a great time to be out.
        The trees are changing most years and the air crisp. We almost
        always had good weather. The only time I woke up to a fair amount of
        snow was the first week of October when there is usually a small
        storm. We generally went the second week and missed it. The only
        other time I had anow it waas just enough to barely cover the ground.
        The streams and puddle stayed frozen all the time for most of the
        week but days were 50 to 55.

        Have a good time and be prepared to wait out a small storm or bail out
        if it is really bad. Wish I was going too.
        >
        > Thanks!
        > Kermit
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, hmdsierra <no_reply@> wrote:
        > >
        > > Let me add that my friend and I finished the south half JMT, South
        > Lk
        > > to Whitney, starting the last few days of Aug and finishing near
        > mid
        > > Sept. Saw a few people, 30 or so until Whitney, and had nice
        > weather
        > > all the time. It was actually warmer at Hitchcock Lks that it was
        > in
        > > Aug of another year. Very cold at night, streams sometimes freeze
        > and
        > > one year the lakes were ecing over.
        > >
        > > --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, hmdsierra <no_reply@> wrote:
        > > >
        > > > It can be iffy so be prepared to wait out a storm or bail out.
        > My
        > > > friend and I made many trips in October, usually the second week
        > but I
        > > > have been out past the 25th. there is usually a small storm the
        > first
        > > > week of October. Almost all our trips were sunny and not too
        > cool
        > > > during the day. One year we met a couple of people doing the
        > whole
        > > > trail while we were in LeConte at Dusy Ck. Pne year another
        > fried and
        > > > I did the Kern river and had one night of snow at Kern Hot
        > Spring.
        > > > Another year I went solo the middle of October and had a very
        > light
        > > > dusting of snow the second night. I came odut to Roads End in
        > Kings
        > > > Canyon and while the sun was shining when I got there by the
        > time my
        > > > wife arrived to get me there was about six inches ow white on the
        > > > ground and still coming down. The snow level was way down into
        > the
        > > > foothills and it rained hard all the way home and continued the
        > next
        > > > day. While I was coming out I met several people going in. At
        > the
        > > > Ranger Station I talked to a guy who was going in with friends
        > and he
        > > > decided to bail.
        > > >
        > > > --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, "dmwenstrup" <dmwenstrup@>
        > wrote:
        > > > >
        > > > >
        > > > > Hello Everyone -
        > > > >
        > > > > Good or bad, the economy is claiming me as its next victim.
        > I was
        > > > > notified that my position is being eliminated at the end of
        > August.
        > > > > Instead of jumping right into another job, I'm going to take
        > a few
        > > > > months off, get in some serious bag nights and try to screw my
        > head
        > > > > back on straight.
        > > > > I've always wanted to thru-hike the JMT so what better time.
        > > > >
        > > > > With all that said, I probably will not be able to start the
        > trail
        > > > > until mid-September. Worse case towards the end of September.
        > I'm
        > > > > planning on solo hiking and I'll be going south.
        > > > >
        > > > > Is that too late to start? I don't want to rush so I'm
        > giving
        > > > > myself 25-30 days.
        > > > >
        > > > > Thanks for all your advice in advance!
        > > > >
        > > > > Kermit
        > > > >
        > > >
        > >
        >
      • Bob Bankhead
        Kermit: Regarding resort closures, here is the info from 2008: Reds Mdw Resort closed 30 Sept Reds Mdw Shuttle bus service stopped 3 Sept Vermillion Valley
        Message 3 of 9 , Feb 1, 2009
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          Kermit:

          Regarding resort closures, here is the info from 2008:


          Reds Mdw Resort closed 30 Sept

          Reds Mdw Shuttle bus service stopped 3 Sept

          Vermillion Valley Resort says hiker supply boxes can be picked up as late as 15 Oct, depending on snow conditions. However, their ferry boat service stops 1 Oct.

          Muir Trail Ranch closed the last week of Sept, and their last PO pickup was 15 Sept.

          Your greatest challenge would be at Onion Valley if you were looking to hitch out to Independence and back. I don't know when the USFS campground at Onion Valley closes. I'm pretty sure the OV Pack Station is closed around Labor Day, if it's even open that late. You'd have to contact Sequoia King Pack Trains at pinecreekps@... or call 760-387-2627 to find out.


          Wandering Bob

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • matt
          Kermit, I finished my hike on October 18, 2008. I used a northface pyxis sleeping bag 0 degrees, synthetic. It is a good bag and weights only 3.5 pounds. I
          Message 4 of 9 , Feb 1, 2009
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            Kermit,

            I finished my hike on October 18, 2008. I used a northface pyxis
            sleeping bag 0 degrees, synthetic. It is a good bag and weights only
            3.5 pounds. I would weigh your wilderness competence before going
            that late or find a partner whom is experienced. I saw only around 20
            people my whole hike after t-meadows. So it is considerably more
            dangerous. That said, bring the right gear and knowledge and it is
            the best time of the year.

            Matt





            --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, "Bob Bankhead"
            <wandering_bob@...> wrote:
            >
            > Kermit:
            >
            > Regarding resort closures, here is the info from 2008:
            >
            >
            > Reds Mdw Resort closed 30 Sept
            >
            > Reds Mdw Shuttle bus service stopped 3 Sept
            >
            > Vermillion Valley Resort says hiker supply boxes can be picked up as
            late as 15 Oct, depending on snow conditions. However, their ferry
            boat service stops 1 Oct.
            >
            > Muir Trail Ranch closed the last week of Sept, and their last PO
            pickup was 15 Sept.
            >
            > Your greatest challenge would be at Onion Valley if you were looking
            to hitch out to Independence and back. I don't know when the USFS
            campground at Onion Valley closes. I'm pretty sure the OV Pack Station
            is closed around Labor Day, if it's even open that late. You'd have to
            contact Sequoia King Pack Trains at pinecreekps@... or call
            760-387-2627 to find out.
            >
            >
            > Wandering Bob
            >
            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >
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