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[Yosemite]

water availability - N & S Rim & CR

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

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water availability - N & S Rim & CR

Postby bwg999 » Mon Aug 08, 2016 2:58 pm

Hello,

I am planning a few day hikes in the next week or so and am seeking info on water availability on the following trails (will we find water to filter or do we need to carry full days supply):

1. North Rim - up Upper Yosemite Fall trail to Eagle Peak to El Cap summit & return

2. South Rim - up Pohono Trail and down either 4 Mile Trail or Panorama Trail

3. Cloud's Rest from Sunrise TH on Tioga Road & return

Thanks very much in advance!

P.S. If we leave a car at Tunnel View then hike Pohono to either 4 Mile Trail or Panorama Trail down JMT to Happy Isles, is there a way to get back from either 4 Mile TH or HI to our car at Tunnel View? (other than walk/hitch)
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Re: water availability - N & S Rim & CR

Postby AlmostThere » Mon Aug 08, 2016 8:44 pm

If you look at the Yosemite and Bridalveil waterfalls, and see them flowing, there is water in Bridalveil creek and Yosemite Creek. No water in either waterfall (Yosemite or Bridalveil) says that the largest streams in the area are dry, and you can't count on more than stagnant pools there, and the smaller streams that exist in spring are going to be dry as well.

I would expect there to be some amount of water in Sunrise creek, a slight side trip on the way to Clouds Rest. Last year there was not, but it was a drier year.
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Re: water availability - N & S Rim & CR

Postby Phil » Thu Aug 11, 2016 5:49 am

North Rim - We generally rely on nothing but Yosemite Creek in that area, and that's it. Further west, Lehamite Creek and the upper crossing of Royal Arch Creek, but that's not on your route, and I post the info only for the sake of others.

South Rim - Bridalveil Creek is generally it this time of year.

Even if you don't see water flowing over the brink of either falls, it doesn't always mean there's no flow at all. Water may not be making it there, and especially on Yosemite Creek, there are usually some deep pools upstream that are fairly fresh. You can check out the webcam images of Yosemite Falls and see if the face of the rock is at least damp, indicating at least a slight flow.

Sunrise - CR- The tarn to the left of the trail is an absolute, and the triple creek crossing up-trail from there is very likely. After that, nothing at all.

You may find some isolated pooling here and there that you can pump from, but you better have a good pre-filter and be okay with tannin or algae tasting water. Packets of powdered drink mixes are great in just such situations.
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Re: water availability - N & S Rim & CR

Postby Peasy » Thu Aug 11, 2016 10:12 am

Quick, kind of related question:
We headed from TM to the Valley via John Muir next week. Is sunrise creek a reliable source of water this time of year? We are planning on loading up at Cathedral but are hoping to find something after that, around sunrise creek where we plan to camp the 2nd night near the half dome/cloud's rest trail split. Thanks!
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Re: water availability - N & S Rim & CR

Postby AlmostThere » Thu Aug 11, 2016 10:17 am

It's dried up in years past but should be fine.

You'll have plenty of company camping there.
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Re: water availability - N & S Rim & CR

Postby Peasy » Thu Aug 11, 2016 10:32 am

Great, thanks! We are three newbs to backcountry hiking (we recently did a one nighter on Mt. Diablo for training, with our gear). We do a ton of day hiking but not a lot of the over nighters. We don't mind the company, in fact it is kind of a comfort while we "learn the ropes". I am a long distance runner, so I figure the worst case scenario is that I take the hydration packs on a 3 mile side trip to the Merced and back, while the guys set up camp.
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Re: water availability - N & S Rim & CR

Postby Phil » Thu Aug 11, 2016 1:20 pm

Filter at Upper Cathedral, then hit the spigot at the Sunrise HSC, then you'll start picking up water consistently almost trailside as you cross Sunrise Creek just after the descent from Sunrise Mountain. Should be plenty of spots from there until you hit camp. Depending on how hot it is, none of the distances between those points should require more than a liter per person.

Nope, no shortage of people in those parts. Even if it's earlier than you might like before stopping to camp, in order to find a good spot, grab it before someone else does. Start poking around to the right of the trail (send one person over to walk parallel to it) just after you first make that Sunrise Creek crossing I mentioned above. There are also good view sites in the rocks to the left of the trail just down from the JMT/Cloud's Rest junction., as well as slightly up the CR trail itself.
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Re: water availability - N & S Rim & CR

Postby Peasy » Thu Aug 11, 2016 3:09 pm

Priceless information Phil, Thank you!
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