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[Yosemite]

Ambitious 4 night loop - late May

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

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Re: Ambitious 4 night loop - late May

Postby Phil » Sun May 29, 2016 7:34 pm

That is so friggin' awesome!! Epic! I love it! An absolute honor and a pleasure to have helped you out in any way. If you do it again, let me know and sign me up!
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Re: Ambitious 4 night loop - late May

Postby Phil » Mon May 30, 2016 9:26 pm

I do have a couple of questions:

How was that first crossing on Cathedral Creek by where you camped? That creek drains a lot of area.

I think I have a pretty good idea of how you did it based on what you saw topographically, but since you specifically mentioned that u-turn at the back of the valley up to Tuolumne Peak, what was your clue? Did you have the trail, or just wait for the uphill slope to your left to open up and wing it?

Any flooding in Pate Valley?
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Re: Ambitious 4 night loop - late May

Postby putwein » Tue May 31, 2016 8:07 am

That crossing was wide and a bit deep (maybe to the knee or so), but not moving too fast. We took our boots off and waded across. It was the only crossing where we did that (we did wade a couple others with boots on, but that was for shallower creeks, and on warmer days).

The U-turn was tough. We didn't have the trail at the point where we turned, and visibility was fairly low. We were able to spot the sort of cove-like feature in the mountains to the West (which has a lake in it on the map). We knew we needed to turn just beyond that. We also had caught glimpses of Tuolumne Peak a bit earlier which gave us some sense of when to turn. Other than that, we just looked for a good opening in the terrain, and knew we needed to go obliquely uphill once we turned.

Some saturation in Pate Valley, but no real flooding. Anything that was too wet we were able to walk around pretty easily.
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Re: Ambitious 4 night loop - late May

Postby Phil » Tue May 31, 2016 9:35 am

Thanks!

I was thinking you were talking about that u-turn swing to the left just above the creek in the back of the valley. With what you were actually referring to, if you had gone much farther north you would've begun descending pretty quickly, but it was great that that slot up to the pass became so obvious. It must've been a relief. Aren't those views amazing up there? I've never been able to get a picture that adequately depicted the scale or the depth of it enough for anyone at home to fully appreciate.

And yep, down on the May Lake trail, you guys got way lost. Not much to offer in the way of visible reference points for navigation. You were lucky that that's pretty forgiving terrain.

It's also funny that you mentioned that 2nd trail off towards Harden Lake. That puny, completely incidental 1 mile trail is the only one I've never been on in that entire area. When that fire was happening, we had just come up from Pate Valley and planned to knock it off our list, but when we got there, three firefighters had just closed it off like two minutes before, and all the begging in the world wasn't going to allow them to give us the okay. That kind of stuff just kills me.
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