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TR: LYV, Clouds Rest, Quarter Domes, Illilouette Ridge, Merced River Planning Meeting

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I guess I'd better do this Trip Report before I start forgetting things!
When was the trip anyway? . . . ( starting to load photos from SDHC cards, looking at date stamp on photos ) Ok, I spent a week in Yosemite, from Sat Oct 22 to Sat Oct 29.
This is a bit old to get current conditions, but you might enjoy the story and photos/videos smiling smiley

I'm going to do this in multiple postings. This first post will be the summary, short and to the point.
The second post will be detailed, so you can skip the next LONG post if you like.
The third and maybe fourth post will have links to the photos/videos as I get them loaded.

  • Day 1 - Sat Oct 22 - finish packing and loading car, drive from Sacramento to Yosemite Valley, check out Camp 4, no room!?, head to Trailhead lot, walk over to and camp in Backpackers Campground
  • Day 2 - Sun Oct 23 - get up early ( early for me anyway ) and head to the permit office, get permit for LYV for that day, pick up breakfast at Degnan's Deli, head to car at Trailhead parking lot and while eating pack backpack, head up trail to LYV
  • Day 3 - Mon Oct 24 - sleep in, pack backpack, pump water, head up trail past HD trail junction and head up towards Clouds Rest, HEAVY PACK, steep trail that doesn't let up!, manage to make it to just off trail at the point to start lateraling towards Quarter Domes and collapse in exhaustion, Day 3 camp spot, find semi flat spot, set up camp, eat dinner, sleep, try not to slip downslope off of pad!
  • Day 4 - Tue Oct 25 - sleep in ( you see a pattern here? ), eat, pack day camera pack, head up trail, pump and fill water bottles at spring ( I would have been in trouble had there not been water here! ), start taking lots of pictures, get on top around 2pm, setup and try to take Gigapan, DSLR shutter breaks so can't take Gigapan sad smiley , clouds moved in would have ruined a Gigapan even if I DID have a working DSLR, took lots of pictures and video with backup camera, headed back down around 5pm, get lost in the dark trying to find camp ( never in danger, just pissed ), finally find camp after an hour walking an extra mile, amazing how different an area looks when you're walking up hill vs downhill!, stuff my face with some dinner, crash
  • Day 5 - Wed Oct 26 - eventually roll out of bed, head over to Quarter Domes, lose lens hood for backup camera, batteries for camera almost dead and didn't bring extras from camp, explore both domes, take pictures and video till batteries give out, head back to camp, eat, pack, head down towards valley, get to LYV and keep going even though I know it'll be dark well before getting out, get to car by 9pm, unpack backpack, eat dinner, get spotlighted and the once-over by a LE ranger looking for people sleeping in car ( opps what's that pillow doing sitting next to me? ), head to backpackers campground.
  • Day 6 - Thur Oct 27 - rest day, go to Camp 4 early to get at head of line, check in, setup camp, meet site mates, leisure breakfast at the Lodge while reading my Kindle, continue reading Kindle at a picnic table at Church Bowl till no longer in sun, move over to bench under tree at the north end of Ahwahnee Row facing the meadow, late afternoon walk over the Pizza Deck at Curry and get a pizza ( Loft pizza IS better! ), back to Camp 4, fireside activities with camp mates, crash for the night.
  • Day 7 - Fri Oct 28 - breakfast at the Lodge, head up Glacier Point road, explore area of Ostrander Rocks, head across the road and work up the south end of Illilouette Ridge, traverse north along the top of the ridge, at the high point with the best view and no reason to continue going north sat down and finished the previous days pizza while enjoying the view and watching sunset, HIGHPOINT of the trip, AMAZING! views, head back to car and the valley, shower at Curry, back to Camp 4, fireside activities with camp mates, crash for the night.
  • Day 8 - Sat Oct 29 - up early ( for me ) pack camp into car, breakfast at the Lodge, attend the Merced River Plan planning meeting, drive home

    Points of interest:
    • Lots of bear signs, but no bear trouble. Didn't see a single bear this trip.
    • No problems finding water. Standing water along trail before HD junction downhill from the spring. The trailside spring under Cloud's Rest Pinnacles was running also.
    • Rangers seem to be enforcing more than in the past. I heard from several Camp 4 campers of incidents and was myself given the once over while sitting eating diner in my car at the Trailhead Parking lot.
    • Fall foliage was near peak at the time
    • The bathrooms at Backpackers campground have been pulled out. Vault toilets have been put in their place. There is no longer a water faucet to fill water bottles.
    • Backpackers campground is closed for the season
    • Wilderness permits are now being issued at the Visitor Center
    • Camp 4 is now self-registered
    • You meet the most interesting and diverse people at Camp 4!
    • If you care about Yosemite please attend some of the planning meetings.
It sounds like a fun trip. Thanks for the info.

What's with the toilets at the Backpackers' Campground? Are they planning to close it for good?
Quote
wherever
It sounds like a fun trip. Thanks for the info.

What's with the toilets at the Backpackers' Campground? Are they planning to close it for good?

I think the sewer line for those bathrooms had to cross under Tenaya creek and they had some problems with the piping crossing. As a result they decided to just rip out the bathrooms and sewer piping and replace them with a bunch of vault toilets. I didn't even see any running water with a faucet so that you could cook or fill water bottles. It kinda sucks, it changes the character of the campground.
avatar Re: TR: LYV, Clouds Rest, Quarter Domes, Illilouette Ridge, Merced River Planning Meeting
November 17, 2011 11:34AM
Tanks. Was wondering if you got up there.

QD is a special lilttle place. But Ill ridge is a nice little gem as you found out.
ala:
http://yosemitenews.info/forum/read.php?3,30398,32327#msg-32327
Here's the videos from the trip.

ENJOY!

Clouds Rest:
Looking at the Clouds from Clouds Rest #1

Looking at the Clouds from Clouds Rest #2

Looking at the Clouds from Clouds Rest #3

Looking at the Clouds from Clouds Rest #4


Quarter Domes:
Quarter and Half Domes and looking down the chute between them

Looking down at Mirror Lake, Mt Watkins, Tenaya Canyon, and Half Dome from Lower Quarter Dome and it's shaped rocks

Zoomed view into Tenaya Canyon from Lower Quarter Dome, followed by a 360 pan of the view

Looking down the Quarter Domes chute and then up at Upper Quarter Dome


Illilouette Ridge:
The Clark Range and other Yosemite peaks as seen from the middle of Illilouette Ridge

The Clark Range and other Yosemite peaks as seen from the south end of Illilouette Ridge
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