Central California

Rim Fire, Tuolumne Meadows to Donner Summit

By: Stone Dancer
August 27th, 2013

Yosemite National Park’s website reports trail closures to the northeast of the very large Rim Fire near Groveland. The trail closure is bounded by the PCT, but the PCT itself is not closed at this time.

However, smoke from this fire is moving north along the crest, all the way past Reno and Donner Summit. Air quality coniditions have been “Unhealthy” for several days, but are quite variable as the wind patterns shift around every day.

See www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/conditions.htm for more information and a map of the trail closure.

Bear Creek ford/ Edison lake water taxi

By: Daytripper
July 1st, 2013

June 22 – Bear Creek ford (mile 869.25) quite easy – depth only at mid-calf.
June 23 – VVR water taxi on Edison Lake now running both in morning (9:45) and evening (4:45). Pickup point at east end of Edison Lake marked by US flag. Due to low water, pickup point is on dry lake bed about 1/4 mile farther west than dock at high water mark.

Muir Trail Ranch

By: Marianna
June 17th, 2013

I emailed the Muir Trail Ranch about food and resupply as well as trail conditions and they stated in their reply the following. “Since we’re not open for resupply yet we haven’t talked with anyone who’s actually been on the trail about conditions. The snow pack in our area is very low, and the stream crossing are easy.”

Section G Rockhouse Basin to Beck Mdws

By: HyltonHiker
May 1st, 2013

The trail tread is in good shape in this area the problems here is: two big rocks that rolled onto the trail between Rockhouse Basin and Kennedy Mdws hikers and horses can still get around them pretty easy aslo I counted 12 downed snags across the trail all within the 2008 Clover Fire. No snow present anywhere and the creeks are running to a trickle. No running water at Kennedy Mdws CG. Did this hike on 4/27/13

Trail Conditions from Canebrake Rd to Spanish Needles Canyon

By: HyltonHiker
April 16th, 2013

The trail in this section of the Owens Pk Wilderness I found that there is mainly tread work north of Spanish Needle Ck some sections are real bad it was like sidehilling also there are some spots where rock walls need rebuilding and few scrub oaks growing across the trail that just need clipped with clippers, and only came across two downed trees. Spanish Needels Creek is flowing to almost a trickle. There is no snow present on this section of trail or any where in section G. I did this hike on 4/13/13

Danger of marijuana cultivation on the Pacific Crest Trail

By: Jack Haskel
April 5th, 2013

While only a fraction of our public lands are affected by illegal marijuana cultivation, the Pacific Crest Trail Association, Forest Service and our other agency partners believe that safety risks are real and everyone should be informed about them. Dangerous marijuana cultivation sites may be present on the Pacific Crest Trail corridor, especially in Southern California, but also all along the trail.

The safety of Pacific Crest Trail visitors, volunteers and employees is our top priority. Marijuana cultivation occurs on some public land and it’s important for everyone to be aware of their surroundings.

The disturbances that marijuana cultivation makes on natural resources causes extensive and long-term damage to ecosystems and impacts the supplies of public drinking water for hundreds of miles. Growers clear native vegetation before planting and sometimes use miles of black plastic tubing to transport large volumes of water from creeks that are often dammed for irrigation. The use of banned herbicides and pesticides by marijuana growers kill wildlife and competing vegetation. This loss of vegetation allows rainwater to erode the soil and wash poisons, human waste, and trash from the grow sites into streams and rivers.

Here are some clues that you may have come across a marijuana cultivation site:

  • Sometimes marijuana smells like a skunk on hot days.
  • Hoses or drip lines located in unusual or unexpected places.
  • A well-used trail where there shouldn’t be one.
  • People standing along roads without vehicles present, or in areas where loitering appears unusual.
  • Grow sites are usually found in isolated locations, in rough steep terrain.
  • Camps containing cooking and sleeping areas with food, fertilizer, weapons, garbage, rat poison, and/or dead animals.
  • Small propane bottles, which are used to avoid the detection of wood smoke.
  • Individuals armed with rifles out of hunting season.

As soon as you become aware that you have come upon a cultivation site, back out immediately. Never engage the growers as these are extremely dangerous people. If you can identify a landmark or record a GPS coordinate, that’s very helpful. The growers may be present and may or may not know that you have found their grow site.

Get to a safe place and report as much detail about the location and incident as you can recall to any uniformed land agency employee or to the local law enforcement agency. Please also notify the PCTA. Leave the way you came in, and make as little noise as possible.



U.S. Forest Service. (2011). Be Safe on Our Public Lands – What to do if you Encounter a Marijuana Cultivation Site. Retrieved from http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/inyo/alerts-notices/?cid=stelprdb5324909

Trail Conditions north of Walker Pass to Spanish Needles Cyn

By: Steve Hylton aka "HyltonHiker"
April 1st, 2013

The trail is in fairly good condition other than just some minor tread work mainly a 1/4 mile north of the Jenkins plaque, also I saw three spots where the trail could use some rockwall rebuilding and a few scrub oaks that could be cut back using clippers. There is no snow present anywhere on the trail in fact it is pretty dry so the fire danger is in effect in this area. Joshua Tree Springs is still flowing water. I did this hike on 3/30/13

Nov/Dec 2011 windstorm damage

By: Jack Haskel
January 18th, 2013

A severe windstorm blew through the Sierra Nevada in late November, early December 2011. Over 4000 trees were cleared during summer 2012. The Pacific Crest Trail is fully open through the area thanks to the hard work of many devoted individuals.

Many thousands of hazardous trees remain standing. They could fall at any time. This danger will persist in the Reds Meadow, Tully Hole and Purple Lake area for years to come. As always, travel and camp with caution.