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Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM

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More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 19, 2008 04:45PM
I'm going to TM in early Sept for 3 nights. Since some of you guys are real experts, and have been helpful to me in the past, I'd like opinions on TM area hikes this time of year.

Here's the list I'm choosing from so far:

1)Glen Aulin (or beyond) (too late in season for full "effect"?)
2)Mt. Dana, then if I still have energy, to Gaylor Lakes/Granite Lakes
3)Mt. Lewis
4)May Lake/Mt. Hoffmann
5)Suggestions?

In addition, I'll probably do a couple of smaller trips on arrival/departure day, like Lembert Dome, Elizabeth Lake, and Cathedral Lake.

Obviously, I can't do all four of the "big" hikes in only 2 full days, so how would you rank these? How is the hike to Glen Aulin this time of year? I was thinking of saving this hike until next year when I can go earlier, and maybe see a fuller river, more "fresher" wildflowers, and bigger falls (if I want to go to Waterwheel, etc).

I'm leaning toward Mt. Dana and Mt. Lewis right now...
avatar Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 19, 2008 05:11PM
I would choose Hoffman and Dana. Save Glen Alun and points farther downstream for next year as soon as 120 opens. Not that it isn't nice now but the more water the better.

Dana doesn't look too bad but it will take a lot longer than it would seem. The elevation will get to you especially if you haven't been at 10K feet for a day or so. The views to the east are will worth the hike.

Hoffman is full of great views also and not quit as high. 11K plus. The cirque on the north side is cool. There is a rock scramble the last bit to the top but nothing much. Last time I was up there the moquitoes were extreamely thick but that was a few years ago. No need to worry this year. There will probably be at least one marmot looking for a handout up there. The radio gear up there will be a surprise also.

A short dayhike would be Lembert Dome. Youll be right there. I would go to the two groves of big trees, Tuolumne and Merced, and skip the lakes.





Old Dude
avatar Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 19, 2008 06:20PM
Dana is my arch nemesis... puked on the way back to SJ... so can't
recommend that one ... smiling smiley
Just kidding... Dana is pretty cool... 0 to 13K to 0 not so good for me though...

There is not a huge amout of water flowing thru Glen Aulin so I would
also save that one for earlier in the year...

Instead of Mt. Lewis I'd recommend hitting Mono Pass, Parker Pass,
Parker Pass Lake, Helen Lake, and Spillway Lake. ok.. maybe you
can do Mt. Lewis at the same time... smiling smiley (it's "only" 1 mile from Parker
Pass +1200 more ft.)

Other recommendation is ... head up to Budd Lake then xcountry
(I know you like to.. smiling smiley over to Upper Cathedral and back down.
Nice loop... and you can say you have circumnavigated Cathedral Peak.

Have fun





Everything I know I learned from Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 20, 2008 07:37AM
Wow, things to think about...I'd like to do all these hikes, lol! I guess there's always next year. I'll probably do Hoffmann or Lewis one day, saving Dana for last (hopefully I'll be slighty acclimated on the 3rd day). How's the hike through the valley on the way to Lewis, et al? Looks kinda marshy/boggy.

I assume the route up Lewis from PP is a clockwise route north to east? I'm sure I'll figure it out when I get there, but there's no sanctioned trail. Perhaps there is a use-trail that's visible?

And for Hoffmann, what's the crowd factor? I know it's a pretty popular hike.
Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 20, 2008 01:07PM
cthenn wrote:

> Wow, things to think about...I'd like to do all these hikes,
> lol! I guess there's always next year. I'll probably do
> Hoffmann or Lewis one day, saving Dana for last (hopefully I'll
> be slighty acclimated on the 3rd day). How's the hike through
> the valley on the way to Lewis, et al? Looks kinda
> marshy/boggy.
>
> I assume the route up Lewis from PP is a clockwise route north
> to east? I'm sure I'll figure it out when I get there, but
> there's no sanctioned trail. Perhaps there is a use-trail
> that's visible?
>
> And for Hoffmann, what's the crowd factor? I know it's a
> pretty popular hike.

Doing Hoffman first and then Dana a day or two later is a good strategy. Hoffman gives you a taste of what climbing Dana is like, except you multiply the difficulty by about a factor of 3 (no doubt, Dana is a serious chug...).

Actually, if you do Hoffman in the morning, rest your feet a bit a noontime - early PM, and then try Gaylor/Granite Lakes about 3-ish, you should have no trouble...the latter hike is not difficult except some steepness the first 1/2 mile.

Hoffman is not too crowded, considering the formal trail peters out shortly after May Lake, and from then on you follow fainter use trails up the SE side. There are other people, but not tons. The actual summit has the radio antenna on top :-/ but the views down to the north and south are fabulous :-)





Wilderness forever,
Bruce Jensen
Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 21, 2008 06:18AM

>
> Doing Hoffman first and then Dana a day or two later is a good
> strategy. Hoffman gives you a taste of what climbing Dana is
> like, except you multiply the difficulty by about a factor of 3
> (no doubt, Dana is a serious chug...).

Yeah, 3000' in about 3 miles topping out at 13k, I'd agree smiling smiley

>
> Hoffman is not too crowded, considering the formal trail peters
> out shortly after May Lake, and from then on you follow fainter
> use trails up the SE side. There are other people, but not
> tons. The actual summit has the radio antenna on top :-/ but
> the views down to the north and south are fabulous :-)
>

Radio tower, yuck...that's why I'm thinking Mt. Lewis. I think for sure I'll try Dana on my second full day, and as for the first full day, I'll have to just play it by ear, or what looks more appealing. smiling smiley
Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 21, 2008 07:40AM
cthenn wrote:

> Radio tower, yuck...that's why I'm thinking Mt. Lewis. I think
> for sure I'll try Dana on my second full day, and as for the
> first full day, I'll have to just play it by ear, or what looks
> more appealing. smiling smiley

FWIW, Both Hoffman and Dana have brass USGS markers at their summits - Hoffman's is clean and readable, Dana's looks like it has been through a scarp metal crusher...but hey, you can still take a picture :-) Don't know if Lewis will have one or not.

Dana has very cute pikas at the top :-) Start Dana really early, as soon as it's light enough to see - especially if the weather calls for rain or thunder in the PM. Have fun!





Wilderness forever,
Bruce Jensen
Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 21, 2008 09:38AM
bpnjensen wrote:


>
> FWIW, Both Hoffman and Dana have brass USGS markers at their
> summits - Hoffman's is clean and readable, Dana's looks like it
> has been through a scarp metal crusher...but hey, you can
> still take a picture :-) Don't know if Lewis will have one or
> not.

Is there a summit register on Dana or Hoffmann? Do any of Yosemite's peaks have them?

>
> Dana has very cute pikas at the top :-) Start Dana really
> early, as soon as it's light enough to see - especially if the
> weather calls for rain or thunder in the PM. Have fun!
>

Start early because of afternoon T-storms, or because it will take that long to hike?
Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 22, 2008 04:43AM
cthenn wrote:

> bpnjensen wrote:
>
>
> >
> > FWIW, Both Hoffman and Dana have brass USGS markers at their
> > summits - Hoffman's is clean and readable, Dana's looks like
> it
> > has been through a scarp metal crusher...but hey, you can
> > still take a picture :-) Don't know if Lewis will have one
> or
> > not.
>
> Is there a summit register on Dana or Hoffmann? Do any of
> Yosemite's peaks have them?
>
> >
> > Dana has very cute pikas at the top :-) Start Dana really
> > early, as soon as it's light enough to see - especially if
> the
> > weather calls for rain or thunder in the PM. Have fun!
> >
>
> Start early because of afternoon T-storms, or because it will
> take that long to hike?

There are not registers on either Dana or Hoffman. I seem to recall one on Eagle Peak near Yosmeite Valley.

Start early for both reasons. I took 6 hours for the Dana RT, 3 up and 2 down with an hour at the top for joy. We lucked out with the weather, but had there been lightning coming up, we would have wanted to be down by early afternoon.





Wilderness forever,
Bruce Jensen
Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 22, 2008 05:24AM
bpnjensen wrote:

> cthenn wrote:
>
> > bpnjensen wrote:
> >
> > > FWIW, Both Hoffman and Dana have brass USGS markers at their
> > > summits - Hoffman's is clean and readable, Dana's looks like it
> > > has been through a scarp metal crusher...but hey, you can
> > > still take a picture :-)

Mount Hoffmann actually has a CGS (Coast & Geodetic Survey) marker and there are actually 3 disks on the summit (station mark, reference mark 1, and reference mark 2).

My wife and I hunt for survey markers and lately we've been specializing in Yosemite survey markers. A survey marker on top of a summit is usually (but not always) a triangulation station. A triangulation station normally consists of at least 4 disks: a station mark (the real survey marker), two reference marks (usually 10-20 feet away at different angles), and an azimuth mark (usually 0.25-0.5 mile away and visible from the station).

I know I'm probably boring you to death, but I just wanted to let you know that if you see a disk on a summit then there's a good chance there are two more nearby.

> > Is there a summit register on Dana or Hoffmann? Do any of
> > Yosemite's peaks have them?
>
> There are not registers on either Dana or Hoffman. I seem to
> recall one on Eagle Peak near Yosmeite Valley.

We were on Hoffmann last month. There used to be a SRC register box up there, but the only thing left is the baseplate. Someone has left a Nalgene up there as a makeshift register. It probably won't last long.
avatar Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 21, 2008 12:05PM
cthenn wrote:

> 5)Suggestions?

Glacier Canyon on the other side of Tioga Lake.

avatar Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 22, 2008 07:00AM
A number of peaks have registers on them.
Tuolumne, Matterhorn, Volunteer, Forsyth...

>My wife and I hunt for survey markers and lately we've been specializing >in Yosemite survey markers. ...

Been taking pictures of these for years now. I tried searching the USGS
to try to find where they all are but could never find anything.
I'd assume there is a map somewhere with them all on.
Any idea?
I'm pretty certain that there are markers encircling the park along with
the summit ones. Found quite a few on the west side of the park
boundry...

....

Ok, I found this:
http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/ds_county.prl

(now more things to waste my time on)



Post Edited (08-22-08 14:15)



Everything I know I learned from Chick-on is looking at you!
avatar Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 22, 2008 08:35AM
I think that all survey markers are on the topo maps as BM's. The 7.5min topos show quite a few of them and I recall that we found the two at Devils Dance Floor by looking at the topo.





Old Dude
Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 22, 2008 08:39AM
bill-e-g wrote:

> Been taking pictures of these for years now.

Yeah, I've talked to hikers and hunters who like to look for them. Most people who spend time outdoors and use USGS topo maps are familiar with survey markers.

> I tried searching the USGS
> to try to find where they all are but could never find anything.
> I'd assume there is a map somewhere with them all on.
> Any idea?

The USGS has a lot of bench marks, but the NGS is the primary surveying agency.

The NGS has its database online (which you have already found). It contains CGS/NGS/NOAA markers. Markers from various other federal, state, and local agencies may also be in the NGS database. Many are not. It depends.

The USGS is still in the stone age. It keeps its records in folders in filing cabinets. It is possible to request copies, but only serious benchmark hunters do that. You can, of course, just look for the "BM" notations on USGS topos. Many USGS markers are in the NGS database (but many are not) so that's also an easy way to look them up.

> I'm pretty certain that there are markers encircling the park along with
> the summit ones. Found quite a few on the west side of the park
> boundry...

I'm not too familiar with the boundary markers because there isn't a publicly accessible list of them, as far as I know. The NGS database has 318 survey markers in Yosemite National Park. Most of them are spaced out along old roads and current roads. Most of the rest are on random peaks. My wife and I have only found about a hundred so far.

> Ok, I found this:
> http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/cgi-bin/ds_county.prl

For a novice, it would be easier to use this Benchmark Viewer based on Google Maps:
http://benchmarks.scaredycatfilms.com/

By the way, "benchmark hunting" is an offshoot of geocaching and a good intro can be found here:
http://www.geocaching.com/mark/

> (now more things to waste my time on)

Yeah, I know but at least it gives us an excuse to hike to various places in Yosemite. smiling smiley Plus professional surveyors do use reports from amateurs, so we feel like we're doing something somewhat useful.

avatar Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 22, 2008 11:50PM
Ok. Thanks for all the info on the Benchmarks and markers!
It gives me another reason to go back to some places where I missed them!
(looked for about 10 minutes on Cold Mountain a few weeks ago.... turns
out I was on the wrong Cold Mountain... (it's on the one about 1/2 mile S))
On the Topo!4.0 program I have a number on peaks are simply marked by a triangle.

The boundry markers were placed by the forest service so it's all making sense...

Anyway, sorry it has digressed to this discussion...

But another hike you could try would be Mt. Conness or Young Lakes...



Post Edited (08-23-08 07:17)



Everything I know I learned from Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: More Hiking Advice Needed -- TM
August 27, 2008 09:42AM

>
> Anyway, sorry it has digressed to this discussion...
>

No no, it's fine, I'm actually a surveyor by trade (not a PLS, just LSIT), so this is good reading. I always try to find the station monuments or the RM's on the summit when I get up there. Other than pictures of the surroundings, it's a nice photographic reminder of being at the top.
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