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Backpacking trip in February

Hiking, backpacking, running, biking, climbing, rafting, and other human-powered activities in Yosemite National Park

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Backpacking trip in February

Postby jvmendonca » Wed Dec 09, 2015 10:27 am

Hi, I am trying to figure out how to spend the 5 days I will have in Yosemite next February (8 to 12).

I know there will be lot of snow in most of the trails by this time, but I will be prepared for it (good navigation material, snowshoes, 4season tent/sleeping bag, good stove in order to melt snow,....) and am used with winter backpacking (live in Argentina and do it often). I will be there with one more person.

The idea would be to spend 3 days (2 nights) on one route (would prefer a loop since logistics there seems to be harder during these months) and then spend 1-2 days on shorter day hikes or 2 days 1 night shorter loop hike.

For the 3 days hike I was thinking about something involving Mist Trail, and then for the shorter to head south for the Mariposa Grove (Giant Sequoias). Anyway, I am open to change anything in this hike, so would be grateful to receive your advises. Would prefer routes with beautiful landscapes (probably something easy over there).

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Re: Backpacking trip in February

Postby AlmostThere » Wed Dec 09, 2015 9:48 pm

Mariposa Grove is not a multi-night trip and is closed until 2017. The Mist Trail is also closed for the winter, due to lots of ice (of the falling on the head variety, as well as a lot of it on the steps).

There are routes starting at Badger Pass that will probably be more to your liking than anything out of the valley floor. Steeper trails like Mist or Four Mile close anyway, and starting at Badger allows a more gradual approach to the back country. You'll pick up a permit at the A frame there.
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Re: Backpacking trip in February

Postby balzaccom » Thu Dec 10, 2015 7:30 am

Given the fact that the snow level will likely be below 6500 feet (2,000 meters) and everything but the valley is above that elevation, your options are limited. Many of the trails are closed going out of the valley, because they follow cliffs and are very narrow. When covered with ice and snow they are dangerous.

I'd suggest starting at the Badger Pass Ski Area and heading over to Glacier Point along the closed highway. The views at Glacier Point are among the best in the park, and you would have the place pretty much to yourselves. side trips could include taking a quick trip up to the top of Sentinel Dome...and for more days and distance, you could join the people who go to Ostrander Ski Hut...or Dewey Point, another spot with simply stunning views.
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