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Lyell Permit

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  • tombuchta
    I ve read that some folks apply for a Lyell Meadow Permit then hike down to YV and shuttle back up to resupply and continue on from TM. Is that ok officially?
    Message 1 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014
      I've read that some folks apply for a Lyell Meadow Permit then hike down to YV and shuttle back up to resupply and continue on from TM.  Is that ok officially?  Seems like if the purpose of permits is to control traffic on trails and campsites this would be frowned upon....Has anyone checked this out with the NPS?   
    • ravi_jmt2013
      I have never done it myself but I believe that this strategy is legal as long as one hikes between Happy Isles and Tuolumne Meadows as a day hike and does not
      Message 2 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014

        I have never done it myself but I believe that this strategy is legal as long as one hikes between Happy Isles and Tuolumne Meadows as a day hike and does not carry overnight gear.  There are no permits required for day hikes in Yosemite. 

      • straw_marmot
        Although different rangers have said different things to different people about some aspects of what the rules are, I think there s a consensus on the
        Message 3 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014
          Although different rangers have said different things to different people about some aspects of what the rules are, I think there's a consensus on the following:

          (1) If you have a Tuolumne > Lyell permit, on your first night you must hike out along Lyell canyon and camp your first night beyond the green arrowhead that points along Lyell on the trailhead map.  After the first night, you can more-or-less take any route you want, with somewhat ambiguous restrictions on "backtracking".

          (2) If you're hiking as a dayhiker you can't carry overnight gear.  It's not based on whether you're caught actually camping, your shelter can't be in your pack at all.

        • johndittli
          Back to the statement in your OP; Seems like if the purpose of permits is to control traffic on trails and campsites this would be frowned upon. This is of
          Message 4 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014


            Back to the statement in your OP; "Seems like if the purpose of permits is to control traffic on trails and campsites this would be frowned upon." This is of course correct. Assumptions were made when quotas where established, and those assumptions are still made when permits are issued.


            A Lyell Fk permit assumes you will be spending your first and subsequent nights, 4 miles out the Lyell Fork and beyond. It assumes a "natural" trail progression; not an out and back to get around a popular TH quota. This is true for all quota TH's.


            Beyond whether it is legal or not, you need to ask yourself if it seems like the "right" thing to do. You may talk to an office ranger that says it's OK, and a field ranger that say's it's not. There aren't laws written to cover every way a rule can be bent.


            If you think there is justification for it to be "frowned upon", then it sounds like you've already figured it out.


            Good luck and have a great hike.


            JD

            Walk the Sky: Following the John Muir Trail

          • Don Amundson
            Nicely stated John! Don Sent from my iPad
            Message 5 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014
              Nicely stated John!

              Don

              Sent from my iPad

              On Feb 10, 2014, at 2:41 PM, johndittli@... wrote:

               


              Back to the statement in your OP; "Seems like if the purpose of permits is to control traffic on trails and campsites this would be frowned upon." This is of course correct. Assumptions were made when quotas where established, and those assumptions are still made when permits are issued.


              A Lyell Fk permit assumes you will be spending your first and subsequent nights, 4 miles out the Lyell Fork and beyond. It assumes a "natural" trail progression; not an out and back to get around a popular TH quota. This is true for all quota TH's.


              Beyond whether it is legal or not, you need to ask yourself if it seems like the "right" thing to do. You may talk to an office ranger that says it's OK, and a field ranger that say's it's not. There aren't laws written to cover every way a rule can be bent.


              If you think there is justification for it to be "frowned upon", then it sounds like you've already figured it out.


              Good luck and have a great hike.


              JD

              Walk the Sky: Following the John Muir Trail

            • straw_marmot
              John, I agree that this is the common-sense interpretation of the intent of the rules, as you state: A Lyell Fk permit assumes you will be spending your
              Message 6 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014

                John,  I agree that this is the common-sense interpretation of the intent of the rules, as you state:


                "A Lyell Fk permit assumes you will be spending your first and subsequent nights, 4 miles out the Lyell Fork and beyond. It assumes a "natural" trail progression; not an out and back to get around a popular TH quota. This is true for all quota TH's."


                However, numerous people (including Roleigh) are using the HI > Illilouette permit, partially backtracking on day 2 and continuing up the JMT, with the explicit approval of the rangers.   So it seems that "unnatural" routes are in fact quite permissible, unless you violate the explicit prohibition on backtracking all the way to a different trailhead.



              • robert shattuck
                ... I m really kind of a wimp, or of the opinion that there are day hikes you can do out on the JMT---bag some peaks and all----but unless you re a marathon
                Message 7 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014

                  "hikes between Happy Isles and Tuolumne Meadows as a day hike"

                  I'm really kind of a wimp, or of the opinion that there are day hikes you can do out on the JMT---bag some peaks and all----but unless you're a marathon runner or a plain old bad-ass UL trail burnin' maverick, why would you really want to put yourself and your entire trip ( the one you've been discussing and planning for these last many months)  in possible jeopardy, by trying to do TM to the Valley. 

                  Speak up if you're out there. In more than enough JMTs , I've only seen a few people doing the day hike thing and they have all been runners, Running!!!! to get it done. And they weren't going to be turning around the next day and heading off down the trail---or maybe they were--but I tend think there are the fit types who can come out and rip through that twenty some miles and then there are the ones, that just need to get on the trail and even though they've been "training" for months, you still need a day or so to settle in, you might say. 


                  And I've seen a lot of people day hiking up from TM , all with that "how far is it?" Question .... It's a good grind. 

                  I'm probably wrong, but I don't think a lot of people know what a hike like this is really all about. 

                  If you really want to do the valley to TM then get that permit (or thereabouts) and earn your stripes without trying to make a death march out of a day hike. 

                  Save the monster mile days for when you're all broken in and ready versus the possibility of a big mistake on day one ...... Just sayin'.....correct me if I am wrong. 


                  Bob Shattuck





                  )

                  .

                • straw_marmot
                  Bob, People have quite different abilities, experience, interests and fitness levels. With an unfamiliar or unknown audience, of course I d never suggest that
                  Message 8 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014

                    Bob,


                    People have quite different abilities, experience, interests and fitness levels.  With an unfamiliar or unknown audience, of course I'd never suggest that dayhiking 22 miles with a 30lb pack is something inexperienced people can just get of their couch and do casually.


                    At the same time, there are plently of fit, experienced people for whom dayhiking HI > TM on well made trails is just not that a big deal.  So, urging caution is fine, but being dismissive of the idea just because it doesn't suit you personally - well, not so much.    I think there's room for a wide range of approaches and discussions on here, and we can't always be couching things with endless caveats and warnings that "beginners shouldn't try this".


                    Ralph


                  • johndittli
                    Yes, thanks. I m not arguing whether it is permissible , as others have stated, after your first night you can pretty much go where ever you want. Too, just
                    Message 9 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014

                      Yes, thanks. I'm not arguing whether it is "permissible", as others have stated, after your first night you can pretty much go where ever you want. Too, just because something is permitted doesn't mean its right.


                      I'm just emphasizing the reasons for the permit system that the OP stated. At some point there is a limit to what can be regulated and or enforced, so much of it ends up being user discretion.


                      I know first hand from friends quite high in "Visitor Services" at Yosemite, that there is concern about blatant "walk arounds", specifically re. the JMT and specifically Illilouette and Snow Creek. I also know that there are seasonal employees suggesting these alternatives in the permit office.


                      In the end, I think it fair that we all ask ourselves and each other; if were doing something that is "frowned upon" why is that, and should we really be doing it?


                      JD

                      Walk the Sky: Following the John Muir Trail

                    • straw_marmot
                      John, I agree with you. However, given how awkward it is to get permits at all, it s impossible to expect people in some noble fashion to turn down (for
                      Message 10 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014

                        John,


                        I agree with you.


                        However, given how awkward it is to get permits at all, it's impossible to expect people in some noble fashion to turn down (for example) the Illilouette permit option - since if they do, that same permit that they turned down will then just be approved for somebody else!


                        The rangers need to figure out the real intent of the policy, and then train the permit staff to apply it consistently so it's fair to everyone.


                        Ralph

                      • robert shattuck
                        Ralph, I thought I was speaking to both categories; the fit and the ones who think they re fit .... But .... You re one of the bad-ass UL hikers I speak of (
                        Message 11 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014
                          Ralph, 

                          I thought I was speaking to both categories; the fit and the ones who think they're fit .... But ....

                          You're one of the "bad-ass UL hikers" I speak of ( JMT in eight days and all...) i suppose and I would not want to dissuade anyone from busting out their trail chops and ripping it all up, but again, speaking to the vast majority, AND in my own opinion, I would lean towards caution on the first few days, especially with regard to something you don't really have to do .... But yeah, to all, go for it!!!!


                          Bob Shattuck 

                          Sent from my iPhone

                          On Feb 10, 2014, at 3:27 PM, ralphbge@... wrote:

                           

                          Bob,


                          People have quite different abilities, experience, interests and fitness levels.  With an unfamiliar or unknown audience, of course I'd never suggest that dayhiking 22 miles with a 30lb pack is something inexperienced people can just get of their couch and do casually.


                          At the same time, there are plently of fit, experienced people for whom dayhiking HI > TM on well made trails is just not that a big deal.  So, urging caution is fine, but being dismissive of the idea just because it doesn't suit you personally - well, not so much.    I think there's room for a wide range of approaches and discussions on here, and we can't always be couching things with endless caveats and warnings that "beginners shouldn't try this".


                          Ralph


                        • Robert
                          I have done the HI to TM several times before in a day without running at any time. If you can arrange the logistics of doing it with a mostly empty pack, or
                          Message 12 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014
                            I have done the HI to TM several times before in a day without running at any time. If you can arrange the logistics of doing it with a mostly empty pack, or day pack, and have been training it really isn't that big of a push. I usually start at HI around 6:00 a 6:30 AM and am usually chowing down on cheeseburgers by 3:30-4:00 at TM Grill.

                            I agree that it shouldn't be taken lightly, especially if you haven't trained or hiked previously, or as you state, it could be a long, miserable day! I also agree that if you haven't got your trail legs and lungs yet, it would be wiser to do a more reasonable tempo early on, and work up to the bigger miles as you get trail hardened.

                            --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, robert shattuck <bobolonius@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > > "hikes between Happy Isles and Tuolumne Meadows as a day hike"
                            > >
                            > I'm really kind of a wimp, or of the opinion that there are day hikes you can do out on the JMT---bag some peaks and all----but unless you're a marathon runner or a plain old bad-ass UL trail burnin' maverick, why would you really want to put yourself and your entire trip ( the one you've been discussing and planning for these last many months) in possible jeopardy, by trying to do TM to the Valley.
                            >
                            > Speak up if you're out there. In more than enough JMTs , I've only seen a few people doing the day hike thing and they have all been runners, Running!!!! to get it done. And they weren't going to be turning around the next day and heading off down the trail---or maybe they were--but I tend think there are the fit types who can come out and rip through that twenty some miles and then there are the ones, that just need to get on the trail and even though they've been "training" for months, you still need a day or so to settle in, you might say.
                            >
                            >
                            > And I've seen a lot of people day hiking up from TM , all with that "how far is it?" Question .... It's a good grind.
                            >
                            > I'm probably wrong, but I don't think a lot of people know what a hike like this is really all about.
                            >
                            > If you really want to do the valley to TM then get that permit (or thereabouts) and earn your stripes without trying to make a death march out of a day hike.
                            >
                            > Save the monster mile days for when you're all broken in and ready versus the possibility of a big mistake on day one ...... Just sayin'.....correct me if I am wrong.
                            >
                            >
                            > Bob Shattuck
                            >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > > )
                            > >
                            > > .
                            > >
                            > >
                            >
                          • johndittli
                            I agree..
                            Message 13 of 22 , Feb 10, 2014

                              I agree..

                            • katyjepsen1
                              Ok, I can t seem to find the right mileage of how to do this. Here s my list of questions. I guess I need it spelled out for me (because all the maps online
                              Message 14 of 22 , Feb 13, 2014
                                Ok, I can't seem to find the right mileage of how to do this. Here's my list of questions. I guess I need it spelled out for me (because all the maps online suck). Lyll fork base bridge is at mile 32.9 of the JMT (from Wenk). What mile do you actually ENTER when you have a Lyll permit? The map makes it look like its in TM. If we do HI to TM as a day hike the day before we hike out of Lyll, does that mean a 32.9 mile hike? I see that TM trail is at mile 20.8, but TM ranger station at 23.9...so where is that missing 10 miles between TM and Lyll?
                                and where is the TM backpackers camp in relation to all this? 
                                Another question...is there a backpackers camp in HI if you have a permit leaving from there? or is the one in TM the only one? 
                                sorry for all the questions. Something is not adding up in my head...
                                -Katy


                                ---In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, <johndittli@...> wrote:

                                I agree..

                              • katyjepsen1
                                and sorry for spelling Lyell wrong so many times in that post.
                                Message 15 of 22 , Feb 13, 2014
                                  and sorry for spelling Lyell wrong so many times in that post. 
                                • ravi_jmt2013
                                  Katy, this NPS map of the Tuolumne area (pdf file) should help with understanding the area:
                                  Message 16 of 22 , Feb 13, 2014
                                    Katy, this NPS map of the Tuolumne area (pdf file) should help with understanding the area:
                                    http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/loader.cfm?csModule=security/getfile&PageID=222906
                                    According to my notes from last year, which came from the Wenk data, the Tuolumne meadows backpacker campground is at mile 22.9 so that would be the distance for the day hike from Happy Isles.  The backpacker campground is near the Dana campfire circle shown in the map.  When you proceed the next day on the Lyell Permit, you can choose between returning to the JMT proper by walking up the entrance road to the campground and walking along the road eastbound toward the Wilderness Center shown in the map.  Continuing to follow that trail leads to the "John Muir Trailhead" shown on the map.  Your other  choice is to take the side trail shown on the map from the end of the campground which joins the JMT near the "Twin Bridges" shown on the map.
                                    The Lyell Fork milepoint that you reference is on the JMT around 10 miles or so into Lyell Canyon as you walk southbound from Tuolumne.
                                    Hope this helps.
                                  • katyjepsen1
                                    YES, that helps tremendously. Thanks for that map. I thought I looked everywhere for a specific map of that area but I guessed I missed it. Thanks!
                                    Message 17 of 22 , Feb 13, 2014
                                      YES, that helps tremendously. Thanks for that map. I thought I looked everywhere for a specific map of that area but I guessed I missed it. 
                                      Thanks! 
                                    • tombuchta
                                      Thanks folks, I didnt think hiking in reverse would be and acceptable practice but wanted confirmation from folks with first hand knowledge....
                                      Message 18 of 22 , Feb 18, 2014
                                        Thanks folks, I didnt think hiking in reverse would be and acceptable practice but wanted confirmation from folks with first hand knowledge....
                                      • bjroach
                                        I m doing similar, but different. I was told it is fine as long as I don t travel HI to TM with overnight gear. Arrive in TM 2 days before my Lyell permit
                                        Message 19 of 22 , Feb 18, 2014
                                          I'm doing similar, but different. I was told it is fine as long as I don't travel HI to TM with overnight gear.   Arrive in TM 2 days before my Lyell permit starts.  Take the afternoon shuttle to the Valley.  Stay overnight in L'Curry Resorts.  Hike back to TM.  Grab my backpack in my car (food in a bear box).  Stay in the backpacker camp and begin my thru hike on the date of my Lyell permit.  
                                        • brucelem12
                                          bjroach, was that feedback re day hiking HI to TM from calling the permit office? Just curious since I ve considered doing the same a few times. I actually got
                                          Message 20 of 22 , Feb 18, 2014
                                            bjroach, was that feedback re day hiking HI to TM from calling the permit office? Just curious since I've considered doing the same a few times. I actually got the following feedback from posting a question online nps.gov.yos this year, but was a bit dubious of counting on it. Of course you'll be fine regardless, since you won't have overnight gear.
                                            Bruce

                                            Sent to YOS --------------------------------------

                                            In late June I'd like to day hike from YV to TM, but will need to carry a bag and tent for overnighting in YV the night before. Can I do the YV to TM day hike with my large pack holding my tent and sleeping bag? I would not have any food except a small lunch. In other words...is being able to show a ranger that I'm not carrying any food but lunch proof enough that I'm just day hiking? Thanks for any feedback!
                                            Bruce


                                            Hi Bruce -

                                            It sounds like you plan to camp somewhere in Yosemite Valley and Tuolumne Meadows on either end of your hike? That should be fine....and if you come across a wilderness ranger on patrol, your explanation should suffice.
                                            Safe travels -
                                            ------------------------------------------------------------

                                            bjroach ---------------------------------------------
                                            I'm doing similar, but different. I was told it is fine as long as I don't travel HI to TM with overnight gear.   Arrive in TM 2 days before my Lyell permit starts.  Take the afternoon shuttle to the Valley.  Stay overnight in L'Curry Resorts.  Hike back to TM.  Grab my backpack in my car (food in a bear box).  Stay in the backpacker camp and begin my thru hike on the date of my Lyell permit.
                                          • bjroach
                                            Bruce, No, I did not get my information from the Wilderness Permit office. My information is from experienced JMT thru-hikers and my understanding of YNP
                                            Message 21 of 22 , Feb 18, 2014
                                              Bruce, 

                                              No, I did not get my information from the Wilderness Permit office. My information is from experienced JMT thru-hikers and my understanding of YNP Wilderness Permit requirements. According to the YNP website,  "a wilderness permit is required for all overnight wilderness use."  If a day hiker carrying a tent and a sleeping gets stopped by a ranger between the Valley and Tuolumne, I think a discussion about the hiker's intentions will follow.  For me, I would prefer to carry a  lighter load and avoid any Day 1 debates with rangers. 

                                              Brian
                                            • brucelem12
                                              Thanks Brian.
                                              Message 22 of 22 , Feb 19, 2014
                                                Thanks Brian.
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