SECTION L

California section L conditions May 17th – May 22

By: Hank T. "A.D.D."
May 26th, 2017

As a section hiker I had completed 702 to 1157 last year 2016 and planned to restart again at 1157 in 2017. Due to the heavy winter I had purchased snow gear and practiced weekly in the 1157 to 1160 area (Boreal I-80exit to Peter Grub Hut). Settled on K-10’s being most effective for the snow conditions there. On May 17th the forecast showed 7 days of sunny weather even though it had snowed 3 to 4 inches in the area on the night of May 16th.
Start May 17th noon-mile 1157
Finish May 22 4:30pm-mile 1194.5
Plus 2 mile alternate
39.5 total

Short version:
1157 to 1184 snow 5-10ft deep.
No visible trail.
No tracks to follow.
K-10 crampons stayed on all day first 4 days.
Postholing starts early.
Steps needed to kicked for all steeper transverses in these approximate areas.
1165-1166
1167-1168
1176-1178
And one particularly scary one that I just refused to do and instead climbed thru manzanita a short distance up to the volcanic knob and down the other side,referencing the Gaia app, this was approximately between 1180-1181.
All camps on snow/ice/slush
No access to water.
Underestimated fuel needed for melting snow.

1184-1186 Passing east side of Jackson Meadow Reservoir.
Some exposed trail
First access to water.
Very narrow gorge between 1184.5 and 1185.5 no trail visiable, clogged w/fallen trees, rockfall, frequent surprise postholing.
Fell hard thru snow more than once in this area.

1188-1190
Constant intermittent exposed trail then kick steps for snow traverse. As the elevation dropped this was repeated over and over. Exhausting.

1190-1194.5 (Wild Plum Alternate)
Clear sailing but watch for many fallen trees

Sierra City:
Found wandering the streets by Susan of River Haven where I spent the night. I cannot begin to say enough positive things about Susan and her PCT hiker refuge of River Haven. If you’re lucky enough to get a chance to stay there ask for the room overlooking the river.

Please please please…. mileages are best guesses only using a combination of PCT Halfmile, Gaia app and Guthook app. Somewhere around the 3 or 4th day it was a battle to stay hydrated which lead to some fuzzy math.

Long Version: Too much whining to retell in public.

Donner summit trees down

By: Chris fox
November 10th, 2016

Took a hike 11/9/16 from I-80 Pct trailhead. Connector trail was fine. Tree down about 50 yds so of I-80 tunnel. Then on n side, about 6-7 crossing trail between tunnel and back of rest stop (can see pond at same time). Only went as far as DLRT to loop by summit lake (and that trails fine). Most trees looked 8″ to 24″ in diameter.

Logging over trail near White Rock Lake

By: [email protected]
November 4th, 2013

There is extensive logging in Sierra Pacific land along White Rock Lake Road. As of 10/27, there were recently felled trees over the PCT for about a third of a mile south of the road. This required detours through brush or thick woods. Multiple trees piled up in places, plus heavy equipment damage to the trail. Attempting to cross over trees under snow this winter or next spring could be hazardous. It snowed on 10/28, so I am doubtful the trees will be removed this season.
NevadaRambler
[email protected]
Photos Album link with pictures of the trees over trail at http://www.nevadarambler.info/blog/2013/10/27/paradise-lake-and-peak-8821/

Jackson Meadows to HWY 49

June 3rd, 2012

While overall not bad, there are a few sections that could use some TLC, especially the southern and mid portion. By the end of the trip I was almost wishing I had left my tent behind and taken a chain saw. Numerous fallen trees along the way, with half a dozen or so near the crest (SW of the switchbacks above milton creek). Switchbacks are fair, but a 20 foot section is now dirt and starting to wash out. Lots of the typical early season debris on the trail. Could use some trail markers on the Jackson Meadows side.

Three possible campsites to consider. Best is at the second (furthest south) bridge over Milton Creek. Small fire-ring, space for perhaps 2 tents and sitting log and rock next to the creek. A few hundred yards north up the trail is a alternative, what it lacks in access to water might be made up with less creek noise. It’s a bare bones place for a tent. At the top of the switchbacks SW of the creek is another area, but lots of bugs and little appeal.

June 28, 2011

3-5 feet snow solid from I80 northbound until sw side of peak 8214. Some of the drifts are still 15ft or higher on north facing slopes. I did the section without a gps so my tracks don’t follow the exact trail. Crossed all the creeks via snow bridges. I can only imagine how challenging these usually tiny creeks will be once things start to thaw.

Last 18 miles fairly snow free. Pay attention to when trail turns north after a west-east ridge on the beginning descent down the Jackson meadow lake.

Photo by: Nathaniel Middleton