Central California

Bucks Lake to Middle Fork Feather River bridge

By: David Greenleaf
May 27th, 2016

Did an overnight trip to the PCT bridge on the Middle Feather River, 5/11 – 5/12.

Trail Condition: Starting at Big Creek Rd the first few miles to Lookout Rock have moderate amounts of snow and a number of trees on the trail (8+), none are too bad to get over or around. Trail is well marked and easy to follow despite the snow. Large amounts of branches and debris on the trail.

From Lookout Rock down into the Middle Feather River Canyon the snow disappears. However the amount of trees on the trail and debris increases. The hiking is rough going due to the amount of stuff on the trail. Past the Bear Creek Bridge (in good condition, no issues) the trail goes along a super steep hillside and is covered in leaves, which can be very slippery, in sections the trail has eroded away and the leaves have accumulated enough to completely cover it, making it a bit sketchy to cross sections. Would be super scary with a horse due to the steepness of the slope the trail is on. In the last mile or so before the river, the trail is getting very overgrown.

The PCT bridge of the Middle Feather is in good condition, didn’t notice any problems with it. Camped at the nice sites just past the bridge on the North side of the river.

Insect Note: Below 6,000 – 5,500ft this section is absolutely infested with ticks. Due to the amount of debris on the trail and overgrown sections, the ticks were able to easily attach to me and my dog. Was stopping every 15 minutes or so to remove ticks, easily 50+ ticks taken off both of us while hiking and another 20 or so that I missed and removed at home.

Section “M” first 7 miles – UNSAFE

By: Sam Solace
May 17th, 2016

The initial switchback section is great, including across the middle to the post piles. However, beyond that gets dicey. Initially, you will find overgrowth within the rocks past the post pile, making a couple areas tricky as it is difficult to see where the outer edge is trail, a bush, or air. That is the minor issue.

The greater problem is the handful of rock slides (shale) that have blown out the trail on the upper switchbacks (Southwest facing). The first one I encountered was just a few feet of damage, and clearing was relatively easy to find foot holds. The others were worse, where the trail was effectively replaced (blown out) by the slide. One I cleared a bit, the other I had to create a few foot holds, wedge the trekking pole and jump! Any slip and it is 1,000 to 1,500 feet before you hit anything as you slide down to probably your final hiking memory!!

If anyone is planning to train in this area I suggest avoiding this section and using the Jeep trails (Sierra Buttes Rd, Butcher Ranch Rd, to Sierra Buttes Trail) to reach the PCT at the summit (roughly 7 miles in).

Trail Conditions at Reynolds Peak

By: Peter Samuel
February 5th, 2016

The section of the trail that passes under Reynolds Peak between Ebbetts and Carson passes, is scary and dangerous. I truly feared for my life when passing here. I will never travel on this section of the trail again. I will steer others away from this dangerous crossing.
This section of the trail should be re-routed to allow for safe, non life threatening travel through this area.

Cascade Fire – Lake Tahoe

October 2nd, 2014

This closure has been lifted as of 10-9-14. 

South Lake Tahoe, Calif. –

The Cascade Fire burning near Snow Lake on the South Shore of Lake Tahoe continues to hold at 30 acres. The wildfire is located entirely in the Desolation Wilderness and poses no threat to structures at this time. No evacuations and no road closures are in effect, and the Forest Service is working closely with the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office to ensure they have the information they need to protect local communities.

In addition to Bayview, Eagle Falls, Tallac, Glen Alpine and Stanford Camp trailheads, and Bayview Campground, the Forest Service has closed Inspiration Point and the Taylor Creek Sno-Park for public safety and to allow for suppression operations.  Due to these trail closures, access to the PCT from Lake Tahoe is not possible.  California State Parks has temporarily closed vehicular access to the Vikingsholm parking lot in the event it is needed for fire suppression equipment.

CalTrans and the California Highway Patrol have closed turnouts in the Highway 89 corridor from Spring Creek to the Vikingsholm parking lot to keep the highway traffic flowing to enable fire apparatus and crews ready access to the area.

Here is a link to the closure on the LTBMU website http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/ltbmu/news-events/?cid=STELPRD3818304

King Fire – Lake Tahoe area

September 19th, 2014

This closure has been lifted as of 10-9-14.

The King Fire has closed portions of the PCT and is resulting in extreme smoke conditions in some areas that remain technically open. The trail is closed in Desolation Wilderness on Eldorado National Forest, and travel is strongly discouraged because of danger to health and safety up into Granite Chief Wilderness on the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit.

PCT hikers should avoid the trail at least between Donner Pass (mile 1155.6) and Echo Summit (mile 1092.9).

Blasting closure of JMT/PCT in Lyell Canyon on September 21st

By: Dave Kari
September 17th, 2014

Trail crews will be using explosives on the PCT/JMT in Lyell Canyon on the morning of Sunday Sept 21, 2014 at approximately 11:00 AM, with Monday Sept 22, 2014 as an alternative date. This blasting will be performed as part of the rerouting of The Pacific Crest/John Muir Trail about 1/3 mile north of the Ireland Creek Jct.
There will be a travel delay for north/south traffic for up to 1 hour at this time.
For questions or concerns please contact Dave Kari 379-1293.

Trail Clear from Raymond Lake to Tamarack Junction

By: Nevada Rambler
July 7th, 2014

As of 6/28/2014 the trail is now clear of snow at this point about 11 miles north of Ebbetts Pass, south of Blue Lakes.

There is some loose volcanic rock and erosion, but the trail crossing the escarpment is passable and in reasonable shape:

https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-IY1ptTT79ks/U7C4BMUYqtI/AAAAAAAAouU/pigVlBGxuPU/s640/RaymondLake_20140628_112604.JPG

https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-20NBMaTzmd0/U7C4GRw4PBI/AAAAAAAAouk/xFi1Pt-o4A8/s640/RaymondLake_20140628_113313.JPG

http://www.nevadarambler.info/blog/2014/06/28/raymond-lake/