Best High Sierra Traverses...


Original Post
amockalypsenow · · San Diego · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 330

Looking to get in a High Sierra traverse before winter sets in. Any suggestions? Thanks. :)

FrankPS · · Atascadero, CA · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 15

Gonna be chilly in October. Evolution Traverse sounds pretty good to me, although I haven't done it. Pretty high altitude=cold in October.

amockalypsenow · · San Diego · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 330

Nice- I'll check it out.

Weather doesnt look terrible. I've been up there in winter a couple times and survived.

Fat Dad · · Los Angeles, CA · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 5

Maybe next year. They've already gotten snow in the high country. Heard it's supposed to get down to 6,000 ft. or so.

amockalypsenow · · San Diego · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 330

ended up climbing fishhook arete in fantastic weather. the descent down the east ridge of russel was clean, dry and safe as milk. warm and sunny. get up there! also, don't spew what ya don't know about (lookin at you fat dad.)

My Sunny one shines so sincere

youtube.com/watch?v=F2Dq2jH...

Guy Keesee · · Moorpark, CA · Joined Mar 2008 · Points: 105

NOW is the TIME.

Fat Dad · · Los Angeles, CA · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 5

Dude, I'm glad your trip was a smashing success. Well done. I've been in the Sierra in October and had good luck. However, I didn't go right before an early season storm was forecast. Having a few inches of snow bury the trail and talus is a sure recipe for an epic. Glad you didn't. I was just giving you a heads up.

Chad Namolik · · Three Rivers, CA · Joined Jan 2010 · Points: 1,350

Evolution
Palisades
Matthes
Minarets
Saber
Kaweah
Great Western Divide

Have you seen Croft's book?

amockalypsenow · · San Diego · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 330

Hey Chad; you mean, "Bishop area rock climbs"? I don't own it but would like to -- I hear it's the dogs bollocks for that neck of the woods: second to none. Looking to pick that one up used when an opportunity comes up.

FatDad, I appreciated the generally sound advice from a place of heartfelt concern- didn't mean to chide you, just poking some fun.

Have fun in the mtns everyone!

FrankPS · · Atascadero, CA · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 15

https://www.amazon.com/Good-Great-Awesome-Eastern-Climbing/dp/0967611644

kenr · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2010 · Points: 9,632

Before spending $130 thru Amazon to a reseller, consider that most of the good climbing ideas (tho not Croft's personal stories) have been taken over into more recent guidebooks Moynier + SuperTopo) or MP or web blogs.

Peter Croft was a great pioneer of High Sierra traverses + link-ups. I'm sort of a grandchild in solo/scrambling -- I was introduced to it by Pat who actually climbed with Peter.
But his guidebook / storybook has not been revised.

. (a couple years ago Mammoth Mtrg had some copies less expensive).

Ken

Fat Dad · · Los Angeles, CA · Joined Nov 2007 · Points: 5
amockalypsenow wrote:FatDad, I appreciated the generally sound advice from a place of heartfelt concern- didn't mean to chide you, just poking some fun.
I got that, but thanks for confirming. Also, I think Ken is right. The info in the Croft guide was out there even before the guide came out, and has definitely been covered elsewhere since as well in the newer version of the Moynier guide and even Supertopo. I never bought it just for that reason. If you really want to mine for gold, pour through back issues of the AAC Journals, even as far back as the 70s. Galen Rowell, Vern Clevenger, etc., etc., put up a lot of good stuff that people are only rediscovering now. Stuff like Spring Lake Wall, near Mineral King, which was covered in a recent Climbing or Rock and Ice article, is a good example.
kenr · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2010 · Points: 9,632

"best"?
For me at this time of year (and I expect to be back on the Eastside in a couple weeks, and hoping to do some traverses -- happy to meet and hear stories and ideas) ...

"best" for me now would include ... less-high altitude
... and ...
Quick access from a trailhead (with a decently drivable road up to it).

Because at this time of year, I want to get out on one of the few really favorable days, meaning higher temp with sunshine, low or no wind. Since the days are getting short, I want to maximize hours spent up on the ridge and interesing rock actually "traversing", therefore minimize time spent hiking/running the approach or descent (in the dark?).

Which for me rules out most of the "famous traverses" mentioned so far.

Rock Creek is one area that looks attractive for siezing a day of opportunity. If the road is still plowed all the way up to Mosquito Flat, there is Fad Dad's idea of starting up the W face partway to meet the SW ridge then up over the summit of Little Lakes Peak (not so high, not so far from parking) -- or if discover more time and energy than expected, continue traverse up over Mt Morgan South (much higher). Unexplored is the direct start from the bottom of SW ridge. Or I've had fun with NNW ridge of LLP (also recommended by R.J.Secor guidebook) - (See on MP for details of bushwhack approach + descent).

Note also Treasure Peak (not done it myself, but suggested to me by a rather fast experienced scrambler / runner I met on Mt Whitney this summer.
MountainProject has SW ridge (but that requires first running out around to Treasure Saddle ? might be other ridges on Treasure Peak worth trying ?

If Rock Creek road is open only until Pack Station, consider Mt Starr (esp S ridge is a fun scramble, next time I'm thinking of trying to approach by one of the rock ribs up the E side).

For a short day ...
Crystal Crag by Mammoth Lakes has lots of fun ridgetop (and other) granite (tho be aware that the much-promoted "North arete" route has the worst rock and the lowest percentage actually on the arete, and its difficulty rating is a "one-move wonder").

Ken

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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