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[Yosemite]

Early Season Options

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

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Early Season Options

Postby balzaccom » Mon May 29, 2017 9:24 pm

This weekend our youngest daughter came home for a wedding, and wanted to fit in amn overnight backpacking trip. But we knew all too well that the options were pretty limited, since so many of the trailheads are not accessible due to snow, and the rest would certainly be crowded.

But I had an idea. A number of the backcountry roads in the Stanislaus National Forest are still closed due to the amazing amount of snow still on the ground. Those roads are open for hikers, however. And so we left our cabin near Twain Harte and hiked into the Stanislaus National Forest via the Eagle Meadows Road. We only had a few hours to hike in, so we stopped at Niagara Creek and set up camp. It was lovely, and we didn't see a soul.

I even caught a nice rainbow out of the very fast and high creek, and we explored some of the rock formations above the campground after dinner. It was a bit odd, backpacking in a campground, with a picnic table at our disposal, but it was also pretty convenient. And it beat hiking through snow all day (we only had a few stretches of deep now on the road). We also noted that there were any number of potential campsites along the way, and water was not an issue, since there was water, water everywhere thanks to the melting snow.

Image

Now we have plan for those early season hikes. Instead of waiting impatiently for the snow to melt higher up, we can tackle some of these roads early in the year, and still get quality time in the mountains. And we got to hike with our daughter. Nice.

Photos are here: https://goo.gl/photos/ZYjTEtHM6ZoNQ8yS9
Check out our website and blog at: http://sites.google.com/site/backpackthesierra/home
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Re: Early Season Options

Postby Phil » Tue May 30, 2017 10:33 am

Being the only ones around changes the dynamics of campgrounds dramatically. Nothing wrong with that at all. Looks like a great little place. I don't suppose I could interest you in a very slightly used 2-burner Coleman stove just yet?
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Re: Early Season Options

Postby balzaccom » Tue May 30, 2017 12:37 pm

Ha! Not if I have to carry in my pack!

Actually. we do have one of those that we use for car camping.
Check out our website and blog at: http://sites.google.com/site/backpackthesierra/home
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Re: Early Season Options

Postby robow8 » Tue May 30, 2017 10:34 pm

Phil wrote:Being the only ones around changes the dynamics of campgrounds dramatically. Nothing wrong with that at all. Looks like a great little place. I don't suppose I could interest you in a very slightly used 2-burner Coleman stove just yet?


I was on a Scout overnighter years ago and a group of guys came in after us. One of them packed in a 3 burner Coleman stove. And he couldn't get it to work!
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Re: Early Season Options

Postby Phil » Wed May 31, 2017 6:58 am

Over the years, everywhere, the thing I've found ditched along the trail the most has been folding chairs.

Aside from learning by trial and error, if you ever want to learn how NOT to "backpack", take a stroll around LYV and be amazed at some of the stuff people haul in. I've never been self-conscious or weirded out by unloading my pack on a picnic table, but I look around at other campers and realize I forgot my tablecloth and that my Nalgene is a little too beat up to be socially acceptable in polite society.
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Re: Early Season Options

Postby balzaccom » Wed May 31, 2017 8:03 am

Hoping to get this hijacked thread back on track...

A couple of nice things about this hike:

1. No permits required, since we were not in a designated wilderness area. We're going to keep this in mind for future years, when we want to do some spring backpacking. No permits, just find a place to park and head off into the national forest.

2. For some reason, we saw a grand total of ONE mosquito on this trip between the three of us. There were other bugs, including mayflies, midges, caddis, etc. But no skeeters. Go figure. Maybe we were just a few days early. At any rate, no complaints!
Check out our website and blog at: http://sites.google.com/site/backpackthesierra/home
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Re: Early Season Options

Postby Phil » Wed May 31, 2017 8:56 am

Not really hijacked, just momentarily redirected...no original value or intent was lost in the process. Sorry though.
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