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Re: Presidential Snowshoe hikes

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Presidential Snowshoe hikes
February 20, 2012 08:36PM
We're back from a quick almost day-trip to Yosemite to explore on snowshoes. We stayed at the Westgate Lodge in Bucks Meadows. This is a relatively nice, clean hotel that is twenty minutes from the Big Oak Flat entrance station of the park. It worked well for us on this trip--and allowed us to get into the park before 9 a.m.

We decided to just hike around the Crane Flat area on our snowshoes. The first trip took us through the campground out to the Clark Range Vista, which was an easy two miles out to the end of the old road. From here you could imagine seeing the Clark Range, but it was pretty much hidden by trees. So P climbed up the ridge until he could get a clear shot, which you can see in the photo.



It was a serous bushwhack to get there. But we were the only people on the trail that day. And the view WAS nice.

And then we went to the Crane Flat store to get a quick mug of hot chocolate.

From there we decided to hike out to the Rockefeller Grove. We'd seen this on the maps for years, and now it was time to check it out. Well, there is a reason that this doesn't get a lot of attention. In fact, we were the only people on the trail again. We know how to pick'em!

The trail is easy, but leads through more than two miles of forest that has pretty severe fire damage. And there are not a lot of views on the way. The first mile is also within easy earshot of the highway...

And then when you do get to the grove....it's not much of a grove. A few smaller redwoods sprinkled in among some much more impressive firs and cedars. We're just happy we did this one in the winter on snowshoes, because in the summer it would be a long hot hike through burnt forest, without much water, and without many views. hmmm.

But we did get to see the recent tracks of an ursine visitor. That's ALWAYS fun.



As it was, we enjoyed the hike, had a nice picnic in the forest, and wrapped up time to head home for dinner.

And this trip also allowed us to dine at the Priest Grade cafe...which was delightful. Well-made home style cooking at prices that are perfectly reasonable.

More photos on our website and Picasa pages



Balzaccom

follow our adventures, read our blog, or just to come hang out at our website: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/21/2012 04:00PM by balzaccom.
avatar Re: Presidential Snowshoe hikes
February 21, 2012 12:12AM
Quote
balzaccom
We're back from a quick almost day-trip to Yosemite to explore on snowshoes. We stayed at the Westgate Lodge in Bucks Meadows. This is a relatively nice, clean hotel that is twenty minutes from the Big Oak Flat entrance station of the park. It worked well for us on this trip--and allowed us to get into the park before 9 a.m.

We decided to just hike around the Crane Flat area on our snowshoes. The first trip took us through the campground out to the Clark Range Vista, which was an easy two miles out to the end of the old road. From here you could imagine seeing the Clark Range, but it was pretty much hidden by trees. So P climbed up the ridge until he could get a clear shot, which you can see in the photo.



It was a serous bushwhack to get there. But we were the only people on the trail that day. And the view WAS nice.

And then we went to the Crane Flat store to get a quick mug of hot chocolate.

From there we decided to hike out to the Rockefeller Grove of giant Sequoias. We'd seen this on the maps for years, and now it was time to check it out. Well, there is a reason that this doesn't get a lot of attention. In fact, we were the only people on the trail again. We know how to pick'em!

The trail is easy, but leads through more than two miles of forest that has pretty severe fire damage. And there are not a lot of views on the way. The first mile is also within easy earshot of the highway...

And then when you do get to the grove....it's not much of a grove. A few smaller redwoods sprinkled in among some much more impressive firs and cedars.


And sugar pines...

In the Park Service literature, the Rockefeller Grove is now referred to as a grove of sugar pines:

Quote
Crane Flat Winter Trails, Yosemite National Park
  • Rockefeller Grove Trail (2.25 mi., 3.6 km, one
    way):
    Park at the Merced Grove parking lot and walk
    across the road to pick up the old trail to the Rockefeller
    Grove. It’s a gradual 2-mile (3.2 km) climb to this grove
    of sugar pines. The trail is entirely wooded. In low snow
    years this trail may not be skiable.
Re: Presidential Snowshoe hikes
February 21, 2012 07:23AM
Hey guys...

I didn't say the damage was last year. What I said was fire damage. And if you disagree, perhaps you can explain this photo?



There was a fire that went through here, and it blackened every trunk for a mile or more.

And I am sorry that I don't have photos, but I am pretty darn sure we saw Sequoias. Sure, the trunks look a bit like cedars, but those massive branches up high aren't typical of cedars...nor are the rounded tops.



Balzaccom

follow our adventures, read our blog, or just to come hang out at our website: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/




Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 02/21/2012 08:23AM by balzaccom.
Re: Presidential Snowshoe hikes
February 21, 2012 03:58PM
OK. I am in idiot, and I apologize a million times to Bill.

Those fire photos are from the other hike, to Clark Range Vista. Somehow in off-loading them from my camera, the order got reversed.

And yeah, I am barely conscious these days. 30,000 airline miles this year already, and I don't even know what day it is, or state I am in.

Well, I know that. I am in a state of confusion. Off tomorrow for another long trip, back for two days, then I leave again. sigh.



Balzaccom

follow our adventures, read our blog, or just to come hang out at our website: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/21/2012 04:01PM by balzaccom.
avatar Re: Presidential Snowshoe hikes
February 22, 2012 08:21AM
In my frustration I deleted what I wrote... so people are probably confused.

I did start my original post with "sorry" but maybe it came out the wrong way.
I have a bit of forum frustration lately... especially with someone deciding to
not take me along on the last couple of trips...
Anyway, I'll just quickly say thanks for posting your trips. You perhaps do not
get enough thanks for that.
Old Dude and I and Catalonia Burro Boy did this snowshoe hike last year
and I just didn't have any recollection of a big burn and didn't have a single
picture of a lot of burn... that's all. And definitely there are no Sequoia's
in the Rockefeller Grove. There are some very big and nice Sugar Pines though.
(I did look at your entire set before putting this photo up:

From the grove you can xcountry up to Crane Flat lookout for
some of the best views in the park. (of Mt. Diablo)
And from there, if you got an Old Dude with you who will come pick you up...
down to the Tuolumne Grove and out.

Anywho... Happy Travels... (and take photos of the park from WAY up there please)



Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Presidential Snowshoe hikes
February 26, 2012 03:43PM
Yes--there are some beautiful trees in that area--although tough to get a clear shot of most of them. And as the road turns left (North) and continues past the grove for about 1/3 of amile or so, there is a lovely cedar on the right hand side, with the whole central core of the tree burned out, but still alive and kicking up above. Quite wonderful.

And across the road from that tree, on the West side, is what sure looked like a smaller Sequoia to us....maybe someone will go up there and post and photo?

And don't worry. I never take offense at someone pointing out when I am wrong.

Only when I an right! grin





Balzaccom

follow our adventures, read our blog, or just to come hang out at our website: http://www.backpackthesierra.com/




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/26/2012 03:50PM by balzaccom.
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