Snow Information From PCT Hiker Blogs & Journals

Snow information posted in recent Pacific Crest Trail hikers blogs and journals:
Updated 7/28/2011, 12:30 pm Pacific Time

From Deb & Colin’s Postholer Journal – South of Donner Summit [around mile 1145] – July 20
We tried to get a fairly early start today, to make it into Pooh Corner for our resupply. We had about 15 miles to go. The climb started on trail, then transitioned to snow. We lost the trail on some switchbacks, and had some navigational problems heading to Granite Chief. By landmarks, we were able to make it to the saddle, and had to find the trail to the left. The trail passed over the ridge, and under some ski lifts. We boot skied down to a meadow, and found the trail off and on and we traversed a slope.

From Kathoola’s Postholer Journal – North from Donner Summit [around mile 1170] – July 21
We did 14 more miles for the day and had still much snow to deal with, but none of it was scary today just annoying!! It was a 12 hour day again. We used map and compass quite a bit after lunch because the tracks we followed in the open would disappear in the trees.

From Erin’s PCT Blog – South of Sierra City [around mile 1185] – July 21
We were all looking forward to getting to town [Sierra City] and we heard the last 20 miles into town was snow free. The rumors were right! It was AWESOME!!! We finished the 20 miles by 1pm. Just a couple weeks ago, doing 20 miles in a single day would be impossible.

From Erin’s PCT Blog – after departing Sierra City [around mile 1205] – July 23
The second half of the day was not as enjoyable with more snow that was time consuming and tiring to navigate. I’ve heard this is the last extended snow section and I hope that’s true.

Nice & Steady’s Postholer Journal – on a southbound flip [descending into Beldon from the North, around mile 1295] – July 21
…heading down a very rocky, overgrown brush covered trail with dozens of blow downs. It makes for a tough walk even downhill.

From Balls and Sunshine’s Trail Journal – North of Belden [around mile 1300] – July 26th
Believe it or not, we are still running into substantial snow around 6,800 feet. Oh, don’t worry though, it’s nothing compared to before.

From Mango’s Trail Journal – Frog Mountain Area [North of Beldon around mile 1305] – July 22
The snow turned out to be not the problem I feared. Greg and his group had gone over Frog Mountain 5 days ago, and they described it as completely snow-covered. Today it was about 75% clear; even the descent on a north facing slope had only minor navigation delays. Looks like the record snow is finally melting out.

Nice & Steady’s Postholer Journal – on a southbound flip [around mile 1305] – July 20
The day started out with great trail until we approached Frog Mountain where the snow began. When the trail ran out we traversed about a third of a mile up the side of Frog Mountain in the snow to the ridge top where we hoped to find the trail. Found the trail but were surprised to find more snow patches on this side. Lost the trail and spread out looking for it when Viper showed up again. Glad to see him because he has a GPS. Turns out Sandy spotted a diamond on the tree and we didn’t have real problems navigating the snow after that.

From Malto’s Postholer Journal – Hat Creek Rim [around mile 1390] – July 18
We met quite a few flip floppers today. It seems this section of trail must be the consensus pick for least snow. And speaking of snow, this was the first day since June 14th that my feet have been dry all day

From Marmot & Roo’s Postholer Journal – Etna to Castle Crags southbound [miles 1606 – 1506] – July 15
We left Etna on Monday morning and were anticipating lots of snow for the next 99.8 miles. We were pleasantly surprised to have a beautiful mostly snow-free section of trail, with only a few wind loaded slopes.

From MK & JD’s Postholer Journal – Ashland southbound to Etna [miles 1720 – 1606] – July 21
The trail from Ashland to here [Etna] has been enjoyable. Except for one stretch of semi-difficult snow in the Marble Wilderness at approximately mile 1621, the trail is in great shape; we were able to “ski” down, however NOBOs have to hike up or find another way around this obstacle.

From Sunnuke/Flop’s Postholer Journal – [Mile 1620 – 1623] – July 17
Not much bad snow until 1620. Very bad steep snow from 1622 to our camp @ 1623. Even worse traverse after that, which we might try in the morning.

From Rusticus’ Trail Journal – around Marble Valley [Mile 1631] – July 23
…quite a bit of snow today around Marble Valley, not much of a problem anymore just annoying.

From the PCTA.org Trail Conditions – Oregon border to Ashland [mile 1699 – 1727] – July 23
The west and east road accesses to the PCT at the Oregon-Cal border are clear of snow. Trail 98% snow-free to I-5.

From Old Drum’s Trail Journal – South of Crater Lake [around mile 1800] – July 22
Well we got to within 30 miles of Crater Lake when we were turned back by snow and ice on very steep slopes. One hiker helicoptered out on Monday and one yesterday where we stopped… We hit snow in the 6000 foot area up to 6 foot deep on the northern and eastern slopes, but that was doable. Snow at 7000′ was not for me with no crampons or ice axe.

From PCT MOM on the PCT-L – Steven’s Pass [mile 2476] – July 27
We just had 2 hikers set off north bound from Stevens Pass. They returned the same day and went home due to too much snow and icy conditions. We have only had 2 SOBO hikers make it through from Manning Park to Steven’s Pass. Both had dangerous experiences and changed their plans after showing up here. One flipped down to Burney Falls, CA to hike north. We should have had 20 SOBO by now.

Are you a hiker with more snow information? Post your info in the comments or email them to [email protected]
-Halfmile