Stream Run-off predictions for western US

9:16 p.m. on March 16, 2012 (EDT)
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http://www.wcc.nrcs.usda.gov/ftpref/support/water/westwide/streamflow/wy2012/strm1203.gif

The Sierra is considerably lower than last year.  Dusty trails and early trips.

1:22 p.m. on March 18, 2012 (EDT)
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That was before the Sierra had two back to back storms that dumped 3 feet each this past week.

I suspect that site will update the April run off. 

The new snow will probably push back the dates of snow clear trail hiking at higher altitudes a bit.

2:16 p.m. on March 18, 2012 (EDT)
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Sweet site, Looks like im gona have some trouble with the rivers when I go to the Olympics in WA in may.

8:56 p.m. on March 18, 2012 (EDT)
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We are having HUGE storms right now...>SNOW IN VEGAS IN MARCH?????? So the highlands may be getting some good pack.....let's see.

6:32 p.m. on March 30, 2012 (EDT)
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Even in dry-a$$ Eastern WA we are getting a ton of rain.  (By ton, i mean a steady mist/drizzle for the last week straight with no end in sight; we only get 7 in/year on average here, its a lot for us)

I forsee flooding in the local mountain streams soon. 

7:04 a.m. on April 5, 2012 (EDT)
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Any updates please on the snow in the Sierras?

2:15 p.m. on April 7, 2012 (EDT)
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It still appears that it will be less than normal (by about 30%) snowpack.  Mid June you can still expect complete snow cover above 11,000'.  Even western approaches  still have deep snow in May.  It will be well consolidated and walkable on top of 'Sierra Concrete', with some occasional 'post holing' (slipping into thigh deep snow) in afternoon.

If you want generally snow free Sierra it will be mid July-September as usual.

Check here for local news and conditions.

http://www.highsierratopix.com/community

The Sierra have two sides:

    WESTERN (and popular 'tourist' entry) with gentle low altitude trail heads (4-6000') and sloping, long approaches to high country.  There are a relatively few road accesses from within the National Parks into the high country.  One in Kings Canyon, two in Sequoia, one in Mineral King, two in Yosemite.

    EASTERN (US 395) with usually high altitude trail heads (9000-10,000') and 6-10 mile first day hikes to the higher Sierra usually to a lake and timberline.  These trails lead to the National Parks usually at a high altitude pass (11-12,000' +-) within a 10 mile walk.  There are trails leading into the higher Sierra from almost every small town and wide spot along the highway.  The higher passes of the more southern Sierra have some snow across the trail almost year round but the Pacific Crest Trail through-hikers are taking on the highest of them (eg., Forrester Pass at 13,200', Glenn, Mather, etc) in June.

Sequoia and Kings Canyon NP are backpacker's parks with only a small portion of these parks accessible from roads that approach from the west.  Only Yosemite has a road approach from the east over Tioga Pass which may be open end of May.

November 21, 2014
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