JMT in November, December

2:39 p.m. on October 3, 2010 (EDT)
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I'm going to JMT in late November/December but i can't find anything about permits for this period. At http://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/wildpermits.htm mentioned that no need to get any permissions in winter, but what about other National Parks and Mt. Whitney at the end of trekking? Do i need any permits or i can feel free to go JMT and neighbor peaks?


thanks

1:44 a.m. on October 4, 2010 (EDT)
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Are you talking about trying to hike the entire JMT in Nov/Dec or just access certain parts? I don't even think some of the passes are crossable after the real snow starts to fall. At least not by anyone but the most experienced and prepared hikers. Once winter comes to the high country the trail wouldn't even be identifiable, it would be all cross country route finding.

As for your question, I believe that all of the areas you mention are quota free as far as permits but you still need to stop and fill out the paperwork.

1:51 a.m. on October 4, 2010 (EDT)
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Gary, i'd like to hike whole JMT. Passes always crossable, i'm going to take snow-shoes.

> but you still need to stop and fill out the paperwork.

That is the main question. There are 3 parks on trail and i didn't find what kind of paperwork needs to be done.

2:42 a.m. on October 4, 2010 (EDT)
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RVN, I have not hiked the entire JMT so someone else may need to correct me on this. To hike the JMT ene-end I think that you only need the one permit. You may also need to get a permit for the "Whitney Zone" between Whitney Portal and the summit for your entry or exit depending on which way you hike it. From what Ive read this is just a matter of telling them you need it when you get your JMT permit.

Here is a link to a site where you can get a lot of information. Look at the permit information on the left side.

http://www.whitneyzone.com/wz/

As for hiking the JMT in your time periode goes I still say it's not even a thought for me. I can't imagine waking up someplace like Crabtree Meadows at sub-freezing temps and 3-4ft of fresh snow with more on the way and knowing my shortest egress route was over Kearsarge Pass at almost 12,000ft.

10:20 a.m. on October 4, 2010 (EDT)
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RVN -

The JMT has been done during winter. However, be aware that the avalanche danger is extremely high on much of the route, especially on a number of the passes. When it has been done, it was on skis by multi-person parties (yeah, there have been a few solos, several of whom were body recoveries in spring). Even in November, it is possible to have multiday storms that dump tens of feet of snow. On one trip on a section of the JMT in late December, my companions and I were pretty much confined to our tents for 3 days (except for digging the tent out every few hours). That was near Reds Meadows, fairly benign terrain.

RVN said

Passes always crossable, i'm going to take snow-shoes.

Sorry, but that is incorrect. That kind of hubris has produced a lot of spring-time body recoveries. I would strongly urge you to take avalanche courses up to at least Level 2, preferably Level 3. You will need this knowledge and skill level before attempting the JMT in the time frame you say you want to do it.

Note that resupply at the usual summer locations is not possible during the winter season, and that you are not permitted to cache food and gear ahead of time at other than those particular locations. The only exception is that you can place a cache at the ranger station in Tuolumne Meadows (that is manned through the winter).

There are several trans-Sierra "haute routes", several of which were pioneered by Dave Beck, plus a "Sierra High Route" that parallels much of the JMT, but on terrain somewhat less dangerous (avalanche danger, that is). The trans-Sierra routes and the Sierra High Route are almost always done in spring after the major storms of winter are past.

Although I both ski and snowshoe in the backcountry, this is one of those places where the speed of skiing is a major advantage. If you actually decide, despite the major avalanche dangers, to do the entire 220+ miles of the JMT (including the access at the start and finish), keep in mind that you will be breaking trail virtually the entire distance, and at that time of the snow season in deep soft powder. This will make for very slow progress, plus add in the delays for the storms that will inevitably pass through during such a long trip. The amount of food needed (at least a month's worth) will slow you even more.

I would suggest that you do several 4 to 5 day trips at locations in the Sierra during the December-January timeframe to see what the conditions are really like. (Marcus Libkind's books and website are a good source of information). Going up Tioga Pass into Tuolumne and down Lyell Canyon on that northern part of the JMT will give you some idea of what it is really like. You will experience the access question from Lee Vining up over Tioga Pass and drop into Tuolumne, then be able to ski south to Lyell Pass and return. This is still a fairly benign part of the trail, and has a ranger stationed in case of problems. Be sure to do it during bad weather so you get a taste of what you will encounter. But be aware that this is still a fairly high risk situation, and suitable only for someone with lots of backcountry winter experience.

10:43 p.m. on October 4, 2010 (EDT)
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The amount of food needed (at least a month's worth) will slow you even more.

OGBO, I'm sorry if this is a really dumb question ... but "how does one carry 30 days of food supply"? Given that (at least for many of us) food weighs 1.5 - 2lbs per day, even during summer months when we require fewer calories than in winter ... that's 45-60 lbs not counting the ~40 lbs of other gear (and of course even more in winter).

Though I did manage to carry 80 lbs up to several AMC huts & shelters eons ago when I was a teenager, on normal summer hiking trails, at the "low" elevations of the NH Whites, it's unfathnoable that I, or any other "normal" human, could carry even more than that in rough winter conditions at high altitudes.

So (he asks naievely) does a trip like you're suggesting imply sleds? (hence the "slow you down more") or some other auxialliary form of transport? How does all that weight get carried, esp over difficult terrain, under difficult conditions, etc?

Sorry, OP, I guess if you even asked about this "hike" in winter, you must be very experienced in mountaineering. But since this is in a general hiking forum I hope it's ok to ask these naieve questions :)...

1:31 p.m. on October 5, 2010 (EDT)
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Gary, thank you for the useful link.

Bill, nice speech :) you do not know nothing about me and my experience and talking about "hubris". may be, you are too arrogant? :)

bheiser1, ups.. my bad.. i hoped i found here experienced hikers/trekkers/mountaineers/backcountry'ers and so on -ers. yes, i was too naieve.

10:35 p.m. on October 5, 2010 (EDT)
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bheiser,

Your questions are not naive at all. They are very astute, indicating someone of experience. You are correct in your estimate of the food requirement, and the question of how do you deal with it. On expeditions (as in the photo of my avatar) we generally do use sleds if we are travelling on snow and ice. Plus we generally shuttle supplies in multiple carries. On the trip in the avatar, we needed 4 weeks of food plus fuel, something like 60 pounds.

For the JMT, the usual practice is to have food pickup points in summer or to have someone come in to meet you, or to hike out to pick up food (the standard practice for the PCT or AT). There are several standard locations for summer dropoffs - Tuolumne, Reds Meadows, and Muir Ranch. NPS and USFS regulations these days do not allow placing caches elsewhere - if such caches are found (and the rangers are very good about finding them), they will be confiscated.

And yes, accomplishing something like the JMT in winter (or one of the High Routes) does require a very experienced mountaineer and backcountry skier, people like Dave Beck, Doug Robinson, Galen Rowell, Jerry Sommer, Jim Salutz.

In summer, most people take around 20 days to hike the JMT, using the resupply points. Some do it in as little as 10 days, and a few have done it in a week. In winter, on skis, a strong ski team (such as those I mentioned) have done the whole trail in 2 weeks. Those who have done it successfully in winter have almost always done it in March or April after the heavy storms have passed and most of the avalanche danger has reduced.

rvn,

You are right that I know nothing about you or your background or experience, other than the nature of the questions you posted. As for my being arrogant, no, far from it, having spent a bit of time skiing and snowshoeing in the Sierra, including the northern section of the JMT from the Valley to Reds Meadows and exiting to Mammoth over Minaret Summit - that's a way to get humbled very quickly. I have hiked the same sections in summer and other parts of the JMT (never did the whole trail in one continuous hike, though). The difference between summer and winter on those sections is like night and day, or more accurately, like summer and winter in any big mountain area.

You might want to read Jim Salutz's article on the web about his skiing of the JMT in 1992. I would also suggest you contact Dave Beck or Doug Robinson to get their advice.

Maybe Jim's disclaimer will give you a bit of perspective on the JMT in winter:

This is a difficult ski trip. It is dangerous due to steep slopes, icy conditions, avalanches, weak snow bridges and other objective dangers. You are responsible for your own safety in the mountains. Days are short and route-finding is difficult. You should not rely on this information. You should not use this information as a guide.

You might also post your background and experience so people who read this website know how to respond to your questions. Otherwise, I can only judge from your statement that "passes are always crossable" since you are taking snowshoes - frankly, if you actually believe that, you are indicating that you do not have much experience with big mountains in full-on winter conditions. Perhaps you can demonstrate otherwise. What level of avy course are you current in? What is the duration (time and distance) of the longest winter trek you have undertaken, and in what area (what route)? How many extended trips in severe winter conditions have you taken, and where? Answers to these would help tailor responses more appropriately.

10:43 p.m. on October 5, 2010 (EDT)
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bheiser1, ups.. my bad.. i hoped i found here experienced hikers/trekkers/mountaineers/backcountry'ers and so on -ers. yes, i was too naieve.

rvn ... I didn't say you were naieve ... I said I was being naieve asking these questions! My apologies for the misunderstanding...

There are plenty of experienced hikers/trekkers/mountaineers/backcountry'ers here. I am somewhere in that range, but obviously not of the mountaineers caliber (yet?).

Anyway, good luck with your trek!

11:21 p.m. on October 5, 2010 (EDT)
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Bill,

> You are right that I know nothing about you or your background or experience, other than the nature of the questions you posted

I'm sorry for my questions or for formulating - english is not my native language. I'm from Ukraine. I was (for 2-3 weeks) at Caucasus, Polar Ural, Hibiny and many other places not so famous outside of ex-USSR. If you think it's not enough to go JMT... i'd like what is enough

> You might also post your background and experience so people who read this website know how to respond to your questions.

I've posted, but, actually, question was related to just accessing the area not my hubris or experience, is not it?

> Otherwise, I can only judge from your statement that "passes are always crossable"

Why not? No need to go thru pass in "pre-avalanche" conditions, no need to go thru during bad weather conditions. I thought it is clear. Deep snow on passes, in general, is not a big problem for snowshoes.

bheiser1

> I said I was being naieve asking these questions!

asking about accessing area?! hmm... i'm really confused with your reply :)

> Anyway, good luck with your trek!

Thanks. You too.

ps. 2 all, no offense, but, actually, no one likes assaults and i'm too.

11:42 p.m. on October 5, 2010 (EDT)
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bheiser1

> I said I was being naieve asking these questions!

asking about accessing area?! hmm... i'm really confused with your reply :)

ps. 2 all, no offense, but, actually, no one likes assaults and i'm too.

I'm sorry you felt like you were being assaulted, and for the mis-interpretation in language.

Here's what I meant:

- you posted a question about hiking the JMT in winter
- Bill S posted a response describing the difficulties
- I have not done winter backpacking, so the message from Bill S led me to ask questions about it. I felt my questions were naieve.

I hope this helps, and I'm sorry for the confusion :).

11:22 a.m. on October 6, 2010 (EDT)
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I will chime in on this one.
I love the Sierras, and hiked, skied and crawled throughout its length for the last 45 years. I checked out some of Bill's experience, both as published on the web, and through personal contacts within the west coast mountaineering community. He is the real deal, with a life time of experience that qualifies the validity of what he states. Bill wasn’t giving you advice reserved for a beginner; he is giving you advice any experienced Sierra mountaineer would take to heart. You seem new to the area, so I can attest the folks Bill references, Dave, Doug, Jim, Galen, and Jerry are widely respected, and considered among the pioneers of modern Sierra trekking. I too recommend reading these authors and contacting these people directly; a conversation I had with Dave Beck greatly simplified a passage I had struggled with for years on a course known as the Sierra Haute Route. Their route descriptions can save much frustration for you too, as some details of the winter PCT route are not intuitive. (The winter route deviates from the summer, both for safety as well as technical considerations.) I have not been to all the points on the compass Bills have traveled to, but my own resume includes multiple high Alaskan accents - two in mid winter back in the early 1980s, when that was still very hair ball. I also have done several significant Peruvian accents, and of course, my fair share of excursions in the Rockies, Cascades, and the Sierras.

Experience has taught me to avoid the deep Sierras during the time of year you are considering for your trip. I couldn’t agree more with Bill on this one. Back in the day when I was filled with more testosterone than wisdom, I went on a six man trip from Cottonwood Pass to Yosemite Valley. The trip started December 28. The organizer was this trust fund baby who worked six months of the year in daddy’s business, and spent the other six months trying to kill him self performing stunts like the one you are suggesting. As it turns out our trip was his prep exercise for a winter attempt of Fitzroy. (Talk about nuts…)

We spent most of our early winter Sierra journey in storms or ground effect blizzards. We heard avalanches, but often visibility was limited, and we just hoped we were high enough to be above any slide. This consideration forced us to an elegant but difficult line, much higher along the crest than one would conventionally consider. (Read technically demanding and cold.) Poor visibility and fluctuating barometric pressure caused navigation errors. One day we skied down off a ridge, thinking it was the place to descend into the head lands above one of the major rivers, but instead it was a false pass, less than 200 yards from the correct route, and we ended up descending down into a hanging valley above our objective, costing us two days. I spent most of the trip in fear, and some pitches in abject terror. I have since climbed some tough routes in Alaska and South America, but the ordeal to negotiate Glen Pass was the most scared I have ever been. It was a death trap of steep, fresh snow, napoleon wind slabs, a double cornice and deep snow pillows. To make matters worse the ground was still cooling, so the base of the snow pack consisted of TF crystals in areas with hard shade. We scaled Glen Pass, but our luck should not be construed to mean it was passable. There was way too much objective risk. These, my friend, are the very conditions Bill warns about. That trip changed my outlook on risk taking; no amount of male vanity is worth venturing into these kinds of conditions. The (reasonably safe) winter season really doesn’t start until later in mid January, and only then when prevailing weather patterns permit. Besides, early season trips can have horrendous access issues; it took us two days, hiking 4000 vertical feet to reach the summer trailhead of Cottonwood Pass, because the road was gated down in Owens Valley, miles from the trailhead.

Definitely invest in some snow safety courses, the mere fact you are thinking about such atrip implies you may either know little about avalanche hazards, or about the seasonal nature of winter travel in the Sierras. Also become a student of High Sierra weather patterns; find good weather information resources, (this link this link and this link), as well as sources for avalanche forecasts (this link this link, and this link) and learn how to monitor the weather station data, and snow pack survey data .
Ed

PS
We cached our food drops in the back country along the route, the summer before our trip. This was in the days before such activity was regulated. We had six caches, each stashed in 20 gallon metal trash cans with lids, hoisted up onto cliff faces high enough to be safe from critters standing on a winter snow pack. We also used the caches to stow our trash. It was almost as monumental setting up these caches and recovering them the next summer, as the trip itself. I cannot imagine doing this trip nonstop with the added effort of traveling out to road heads to pick up the various food drops.

11:44 a.m. on October 6, 2010 (EDT)
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Thanks, BillS and Whomeworry. Impressive.

to rnv:

"you do not know nothing about me" actually means "you do know something about me" or just the opposite of what you were trying to say.

.."do not know nothing" is what we call a "double negative" which makes the statement positive!

You meant to say "you do not know anything about me"

I commend you for learning English. It is a very difficult language to master.


I know that in summer only one pass is needed for a thru hike of the JMT.

12:17 p.m. on October 6, 2010 (EDT)
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whomeworry, thanks for you answer and links. I'll go thru them.

About courses.. i'd rather invest in english than going to avalanche courses fifth time, i think it will be more useful :)


So, anyway, thanks to all of you for the answers.

12:41 p.m. on October 6, 2010 (EDT)
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Ed,

Thanks for the kind words and over-the-top praise ("real deal"? Who, me? Naah, I'm just an Old GreyBearded One who has managed to survive close to 7 decades blundering around in the woods and hills, all too often in overly risky situations, on 6 of the seven continents so far, in mountain ranges, deserts, jungles, and swamps. Seriously, I do NOT consider myself an expert - I learn or re-learn too much each time I go out there to believe that I know even a quarter of what I really need to know)

rvn,

I'm sorry you took offense. Your initial questions and responses indicated that you had little experience or background. While I haven't been to the Caucasus or Urals, I have some familiarity with them from climbing partners and friends who have. From my experiences in mountains and winter conditions in several parts of the world, I would caution that different areas can differ in major ways. Just here in North America, a winter ski tour in the Cascades (Pacific Northwest), the Alaska Range, the Sierra, the Tetons, Colorado Rockies, and the New England mountains (the Presidentials in New Hampshire or Adirondacks) can encounter immensely different conditions. Even between the British Columbia Coast Range and the Canadian Rockies conditions are very different. Some of these have the snowfall as light, fluffy powder, some as hardened windslab (often with layers of corn snow), some with rain-hardened slab (sometimes with hoarfrost layers between slabs), sometimes slush layers. In some of those areas, the snow can be quite stable, while in others the stability can change immensely in just 24 hours.

In the Sierra, because conditions are so rapidly changeable, deep snow may or may not be stable. It is not unusual to dig a snowpit and find a soft powdery layer a couple feet thick on top of an ice layer (formed by rain having fallen on snow after a sunny spell) on top of a granular, loose layer on top of wind slab on top of another loose granular layer.

Because the Sierra are the first really high range from the Pacific Coast and the latitude is such that the jet stream can shift by hundreds of miles north and south in just a few days during winter, we get storms some winters that dump 5 to 10 meters of snow in 3 or 4 days (the world record snowfall from a single storm was recorded at Blue Canyon along Interstate Highway 80 between Sacramento, California and Donner Pass, where the ill-fated Donner Party was trapped for several months by huge storms). Such storms typically only happen once every few years, not several times a winter (dependent on a phenomenon called El Nino, a shifting ocean current in the Pacific Ocean). At the other extreme, we can get fairly dry winters, during which you could almost hike the entire JMT on dry ground during anytime from November through January. February almost always gets one or two storms that dump a meter or two of snow.

Put in meteorological terms, most of the Sierra winter snowfall comes from maritime air masses, though occasionally with shifts in the jet, some comes from continental air masses. Most of the maritime masses come out of the Gulf of Alaska, though some are tropical (these usually bring rain on top of the snow, or heavy, wet snow, referred to as "Sierra concrete"). As I recall, the Caucasus gets primarily continental air masses, with the northern Urals getting maritime air masses off the Arctic Ocean, which because the air is fairly cold, still produces a more powdery snow than what we see in the Cascades and Sierra.

My basic message is that each mountain range is unique, with the Sierra in particular being subject to a highly variable winter climate. This means slopes that are more unstable and subject to significant avalanches than in many other parts of the world, especially wet snow and slab.

The permits are the least of the problems to be solved. Just contact the Inyo National Forest and Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park offices directly via phone or email.

7:41 p.m. on October 6, 2010 (EDT)
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Bill,

ok. You persuade me to to become more acquainted with winter JMT going for a week or two (already i did some parts of JMT in summer weekends) and i'll go whole trail after getting and analyzing results. Thanks for insistence.


> dependent on a phenomenon called El Nino, a shifting ocean current in the Pacific Ocean

I read about it, but i didn't that it can affect weather so much in a far distance.

> the world record snowfall from a single storm was recorded at Blue Canyon along Interstate Highway 80 between Sacramento, California and Donner Pass, where the ill-fated Donner Party was trapped for several months by huge storms


I would be really appreciated, if you share with me any links about these guys and their "expedition". It's a very interesting experience. Thanks in advance.

8:57 p.m. on October 6, 2010 (EDT)
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rvn,

The Donner Party (sometimes called the Donner-Reed Party) was a pioneer party who made the trip across the continent in the 1846-1847 time frame (before the famous California Gold Rush of 1849). Through a combination of ignorance, poor choice of equipment, and a lot of interpersonal conflict, they chose poor routes, poor timing, and had a lot of problems with the Native Americans stealing their horses and oxen along the way. They reached the eastern side of the Sierra , reaching what is now Donner Lake in October, just as a major storm moved in. They ended up staying for the winter, though they made various attempts to make snowshoes and send parties over the pass and on to Sacramento, seeking rescue. They ran out of food through such mishaps as forgetting where in the deep snow they had buried the carcasses of the oxen they had slain, ultimately resorting to cannibalism.

There is an article on Wikipedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donner_Party.

While this was an historical tragedy, and while they were not equipped with modern clothing and gear, the big lesson is that huge storms can and do occur in the Sierra. As late as the 1950s, a passenger train going over the Sierra via Donner Pass (the original, and a still used route for the transcontinental railroad) was trapped for days by deep snow and avalanches in the same general area. Even a few years ago, the pass was closed by a major storm that dumped 8 meters of snow in 3 days. About 6 years ago, my family and I were returning from a week of skiing near Salt Lake City (Utah) around the New Year when the pass was closed, so that we drove south around the southern end of the Sierra, because it was so much faster than waiting for the roads to be cleared (the California Department of Transportation has a large fleet of snowplows and is efficient enough that the pass is only rarely closed).

Just a couple years ago, there was an early snowstorm (October) that trapped a number of parties at various locations in the Sierra normally accessible by road. While the people were all rescued (most by helicopter), a large number of vehicles were not retrieved until late Spring.

I am not saying it would happen to you, just that you should be aware of the changeable and sometimes extreme weather that can accompany winter in the Sierra.

5:50 a.m. on October 7, 2010 (EDT)
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Ed,

Thanks for the kind words and over-the-top praise ("real deal"? Who, me? Naah.. ..I do NOT consider myself an expert - I learn or re-learn too much each time I go out there to believe that I know even a quarter of what I really need to know)...

And THAT acknowledgement is the difference between being wise and being a know it all. Your advice and musings are as good as any I have come across over the decades. Despite moments of folly you are still alive, while we both have known personal acquaintances that weren't as wise - or perhaps lucky - to be around today to share the details of their mishaps. I'd have you as my rope mate on a jump-traverse any day, but my penchant for the whack and absurd will surely drive you to cut rope, and chance fate on your own!

Ed

8:30 p.m. on October 7, 2010 (EDT)
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Bill, thanks for the link.

3:30 p.m. on October 8, 2010 (EDT)
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rvn,

The simple answer to your original question is that you need no special permit to hike the John Muir Trail in winter, but you do need a Wilderness Permit. Since it sounds like you are planning on starting the hike in Yosemite, you will get the permit either at the backcountry office in Yosemite Valley (in Yosemite Village) or at the Badger Pass Ranger Station (the Badger Pass ski area). There is no special permit needed for the Whitney Zone for through-hikers.

Be prepared to answer the rangers' questions about your background and experience in winter conditions in detail. They will repeat the same things that Ed and I posted about the avalanche dangers and storm conditions. They will not stop you from going, but will try to make sure you understand the magnitude and risks of a Sierra winter trip of 200+ miles, especially along the Muir Trail where there are no easy escape routes should anything go wrong (all the escape routes when you get south of Lyell Canyon are over passes at least 10,000 ft elevation, all involving slopes which are very avalanche-prone, or to the west at least 20 miles to the nearest road that is clear of snow in winter - in summer, the passes over the crest to the east are easy hikes on good trails).

That said, some winters it is possible to hike most of the trail in regular hiking boots and warm clothes, while other winters have series of major storms that deposit as much as 3 or 4 meters of snow a day for 3 days in a row and render the passes impassible due to severe avalanche danger.

Here is a profile of the JMT, which you can enlarge or get a large paper copy to hang on your wall. Note that all passes from Donohue Pass (near Mt Lyell, at the south end of Lyell Canyon) are over 10,000 ft elevation.

7:12 a.m. on October 9, 2010 (EDT)
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Bill brings up a very important point; your contingency plans should include knowing the nearest and safest exit points mid trip, should something force a premature end to your adventure. I was caught in a big wind storm in 1984 doing the same trip you propose. We lost two of three tents, and a lot of gear including some clothing and two sleeping bags. It took three days for us to evacuate via the road head at Lake Mary, near Mammoth. The route down deviated considerably from the summer trail, due to lots of avy prone terrain. Evacuation would have been even more hazardous had we not surveyed the route prior to the trip. (Early seasons trips require lots of preparation.)
Ed

1:26 p.m. on October 9, 2010 (EDT)
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rvn,

To be very clear - I am not saying "do not go" or trying discourage you from doing the JMT in winter. It has been done (although not often). I am not saying that if you go there will be certain disaster.

If you prepare, it should be a fun and challenging trip, and you will be one of the few to have done it - a real accomplishment. I will look forward to your trip report here on Trailspace.

12:50 p.m. on October 11, 2010 (EDT)
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thanks for advices :)

8:51 p.m. on October 11, 2010 (EDT)
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A ski patrol friend of mine at Mammoth Mountain (just across Minaret Summit from Reds Meadow) says that the last few days have seen snow -

Heavy snow on Sierra and White Mtns. (our White Mtns.) from the last storm. Cold nights now in the backcountry. 6 degrees on White Mtn. Pk. the other morning

The California White Mountains are to the east of the Sierra on the opposite side of Owens Valley. We usually get a warm spell toward the end of October and first of November. That's 6 deg F he is reporting, -14C

Sounds like we may be getting a good ski year in the Sierra.

July 22, 2014
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