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#39621 - 08/12/14 08:37 PM Weather on 8/9 to 8/11 I was there
Harvey Lankford Offline

Registered: 11/10/09
Posts: 1025
Loc: Richmond, Virginia
full TR later, but we did NAP to Langley to fantastic Miter Basin, scrambled by Sky Blue Lake and over Crabtree Pass. Sorry Steve, despite your great advice we chickened out on a long slog to go up Sandhill by Discovery P and then a traverse of Whitney to exit via the MR walk off. Instead went around the bend for a hailstorm and 27 F night above Guitar. Was 10 F that night according to a couple who slept( or maybe not) on the summit . We dayhiked Whitney from west . For those who to pontificate, I only took one qt of water but of course it is short from the west. Another storm that evening, next day out to Tyndall Cr NOBO on JMT. Gorgeous blazing full moon, Glad I brought blinders to sleep. Then 3 am all hell broke loose. Pinned down in tents until 1100 am. looked bad up on Forester but we went,hail, sleet, lightning.A few very tired and probably hypothermic older people were barely moving. On the way down from Forester, it was apparent that this was not a typical 1 or 2 hr Sierra squall, but the better part of 18 hrs. We figured setting up camp on the wet water- flowing ground with increasing damp gear ( despite good gear) would not be fun that night or exiting in the same the next day as it appeared to suggest. Most we met already camped were miserable. We chose to be miserable a different way, at least staying warm, by not stopping. So we went from Tyndall over Forester, made our final decision in lower Vidette Meadow, headed over Kearsarge Pass by headlamp with a 3 minute sudden but short glimpse of the orange rising moon, and reached Onion V just before midnight. For us, it was our planned goal anyway, we just got there much faster. It felt good to sleep in a real bed.

Dan and I talked about the suffering and risk going on up there for those who were on the last legs of their JMT SOBO journey. By the looks of some of them, we wondered if there were some rescues needed because of exposure and/or exhaustion. Anyone hear of any?

Edited by Harvey Lankford (08/12/14 08:39 PM)

#39623 - 08/12/14 09:20 PM Re: Weather on 8/9 to 8/11 I was there [Re: Harvey Lankford]
saltydog Offline

Registered: 02/03/11
Posts: 1566
Loc: Valley Ford CA!!!!

So great to hear of this trip in a very unusual weather year. A lot of JMT hikers bucking much heavier weather that we hit last year, which itself was unusual. This year's relentless monsoon is well beyond that, however, and has generated probably more chatter on the forums than even the drought or 2011-2012s record snows.

Most JMT hikers are prepared: either with gear or bail out plans. The only SARs for weather so far were a couple of trail-runner knuckleheads who left NoBo from Tuolumne with nothing but Plan A: perfect weather and Plan B: SPOT rescue.

I have cancelled my HST plans: I have the gear but not the desire for the current monsoon.
Wherever you go, there you are.

#39625 - 08/12/14 10:01 PM Re: Weather on 8/9 to 8/11 I was there [Re: Harvey Lankford]
Bee Offline

Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1261
Loc: Northern California
Hi Harvey!

I had some friends out at the same time as you (In the Moose Lake region) and they reported getting pummeled along with meeting some terribly underprepared individuals

There is going to be some interesting statistics about this year's monsoon (makes me glad that I always remind people when making summer plans that the last two weeks of July & the first two weeks of August are Monsoon season....looks like I called it this year)

Sounds like all the rain gear got a workout. Poor Tom from Maryland played cat n mouse with the weather for the whole duration of his vacation in the Zone.
The body betrays and the weather conspires, hopefully, not on the same day.

#39633 - 08/13/14 08:09 AM Re: Weather on 8/9 to 8/11 I was there [Re: saltydog]
wbtravis Offline

Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1253
Loc: Corner of Jack Benny and Roche...
Originally Posted By: saltydog

I have cancelled my HST plans: I have the gear but not the desire for the current monsoon.

Friends of mine finished Saturday. It rained their second day out only. They decided it was in their best interest to take a "rest" day near Hamilton Lake.

You never know with the Sierra. I would not cancel.

#39636 - 08/13/14 08:42 AM Re: Weather on 8/9 to 8/11 I was there [Re: Harvey Lankford]
Bulldog34 Offline

Registered: 11/12/09
Posts: 1255
Loc: Atlanta
Harvey, sorry to hear that the weather played hell with your trip but, if you're like me, you probably prefer a miserable day in the Sierra to a picture perfect one in the Appalachians. Any bp trip you walk out of whole and healthy is a good one. Look forward to the TR.

#39642 - 08/13/14 10:56 AM Re: Weather on 8/9 to 8/11 I was there [Re: Harvey Lankford]
Brent N Offline

Registered: 01/20/11
Posts: 278
Loc: Orange County, CA
The right gear and some experience can sure make a world of difference when Mother Nature gets grumpy. Glad to hear you guys made it out well. We'll be up there about a month from now. Looking forward to it.

#39646 - 08/13/14 12:50 PM Re: Weather on 8/9 to 8/11 I was there [Re: saltydog]
Krishna Offline

Registered: 04/15/11
Posts: 101
Loc: Woodridge, IL, USA
This is mid August and usually things dry from now on. Last month when I did HST mid-July, Ranger at LP warned us that next 3 days will be afternoon thunder storms. Actually it went on for the whole week. As it was quite hot till around 3p, the clouds and the occasional showers were a welcome cool down and I enjoyed them with my poncho on. I only prayed for a respite when I reached a camp ground to set my tent, which usually happened smile It was never a continuous tropical down pour. So its OK. So my take is "nike" - just do it!

#39661 - 08/14/14 08:02 AM Re: Weather on 8/9 to 8/11 I was there [Re: saltydog]
SierraNevada Offline

Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1148
Loc: NorCal
"Salty Dog" is nautical slang for an experienced sailor who has spent much of his life aboard a ship at sea. A salty dog is often given increased credibility by ship mates in matters pertaining to shipboard life and duties. Also known as an "old salt."

Edited by Steve C (08/14/14 08:38 AM)
Edit Reason: changed curly quotes, etc

#39691 - 08/15/14 07:27 AM Re: Weather on 8/9 to 8/11 I was there [Re: Harvey Lankford]
Akichow Offline

Registered: 04/07/10
Posts: 659
Loc: SF Bay Area
I was there, too! In that period, battling serial hail storms over Muir Pass, LeConte, Mather Pass, and the Bench Lake area. Made for great photos.

Harvey, great to see you in Lone Pine yesterday. Safe travels!