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Crystal Crag/ Mammoth Lakes conditions?

Original Post
David Rozul · · Phoenix · Joined Apr 2017 · Points: 10

Would love to get up for an easy run-up Crystal Crag Friday but I have a feeling there may still be snow/ really wet, and weather doesn't look promising does anyone have beta on what the conditions are like up there right now?

Also anyone have alternative suggestions for some easy, 5th multipitch or even rad hikes as alternatives in bishop or the sierras? I'll happily drive around for better weather. I'm experienced but bringing up my partner who has less experience.

Thanks all for your help! 

Matt Thomsen · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2014 · Points: 232

Pine Creek’s PSOM Wall May have some stuff you would be interested in. Crystal Crag has a lot of snow. I was looking at it just a few days ago from the top of mammoth.

kenr · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2010 · Points: 16,658

Very snowy on Crystal Crag. And last I checked the county road up to the normal Lake George trailhead was not plowed -- so it's a _long_ slog just to get near it.

Anyway there's lots of wonderful hiking to be done with snowshoes + micro-spikes (or crampons?).
. . . (tho I'll be out on skis myself).
Farther S from this weekend's moisture zone, the Mt Whitney zone trails W from Lone Pine would be great, but unlikely you get a single-day use permit for this weekend.
Meysan Lakes trail nearby is spectacular and much is snow-free (until get higher), does not require a permit for single-day use
. . . (theoretically possible to climb Lone Pine Peak on snow by the normal descent route)
. . . (unless you think the famous _rock_ route of N Ridge of LPPk counts as "low 5th", but still going to need to cross snow on approach, then lots on descent).

Further N toward this weekend's moisture zone, drive rt 168 west from Bishop and head out from any of the three major trailheads it leads to. Perhaps scramble up something on Hurd Peak or the Trapezoid from South Lake.

If really want low-5th-class rock without snow approach, the only things that come to mind are farther N
. . . (perhaps might hope to get a window of a few hours of dry weather).

* "Robinson Ridge" in the Silver Lake slabs (sector 2), is fun featured quartzite and I've soloed it, but it's only two pitches. Ten minute approach from Parking lot along State highway 158 / June Lake Loop. If want to do it with rope, there are bolt anchors at the top of each pitch and total of 5 intermediate bolts for "alpine-style" Leading -- then 30-meter rappel descent from bolt rappel anchor at top of second pitch - (otherwise scramble down -- likely slippery if take obvious gully, easier to go S to sector 1 and zig-zag down on ledges tho still might be slippery snow).

* near that is a link-up of three 5.4 pitches on sectors 7+8 of the Silver Lake slabs (might still be wet?) - fun featured quartzite with wonderful lake view, tho I've never soloed those.
. . . (then find hiking trail over the back and walk N down that to finish at snack bar at NW corner of Silver Lake (after optional side trip S to dramatic waterfall).
. . . (also lots of 5.5 - 5.9 pitches in those same sectors 7+8+9 if bring rope and some draws).
. . . (arguably more featured + fun rock than PSOM Slab).

* ? various scrambles (or snow gullies?) up N or W side of Reversed Peak ? (inside the June Lake Loop) -- (never tried these) -- perhaps including finding your way up the NW ridge which runs over the main W-facing cliffs (featured granite) of the Rush climbing area.


David Rozul · · Phoenix · Joined Apr 2017 · Points: 10

Thanks you guys!

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Northern California
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