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Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries

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Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 12, 2012 01:25PM
Hey Guys -

In two weeks, I'm taking my father-in-law and daughter on the Ottoway Lake Loop Trip starting at Mono Meadow - We will probably end it hiking Half-Dome (My father-in-law has never done it nor has he ever been to Yosemite which amazes me)

I was wondering what the creek crossings may be like two weeks from now - I think there are only three crossings on this trip overall and with the low water levels, I suspect they are very passable.

I was also wondering - We plan on FlyFishing Lower Ottoway and Washburn and probably the Merced down by LYV - but does anyone know if Lower or Upper Merced Pass Lakes just below Ottoway has any fish?

Thanks!
Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 12, 2012 01:44PM
Asked about this route last week for july 4th timeframe and the ranger told me the creek crossings shouldn't present much of a challenge. Last year Red Peak pass held snow till late in the season, don't know about this year but I wouldn't be surprised to find lingering patches up there.

I think theres fishing in lower Ottoway but don't know for sure and I doubt upper has anything.
Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 12, 2012 02:36PM
Quote
BrandonL
I think theres fishing in lower Ottoway but don't know for sure and I doubt upper has anything.

Lower Ottoway certainly used to have some decent fish in it about five years ago. I agree that Upper Ottoway looks fish-free; it's also a stiff climb up there from the camping spots around Lower Ottoway.

I heartily recommend camping off-piste at Red Devil Lake if you don't mind a short day over Red Peak Pass.
Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 12, 2012 04:06PM
I guess I was confusing regarding my fishing question - Let me clarify:

I know that Lower Ottoway Lake has fish

I know that Upper Ottoway Lake doesn't

I do "not" know if Lower Merced Pass Lake or if Upper Merced Pass Lake has fish - both of these lakes are three miles west and 1000 feet below the Ottoway lakes - I plan on making it to these lakes our first night and I was wondering if they are fishable.
Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 12, 2012 04:09PM
Thanks on the Red Devil Lake recommendation but we will be on a mission that day to make it to Washburn - We only have so many days
Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 13, 2012 11:47AM
I did that loop (starting from Glacier Point) with my brother last September. Our plan was:
-Make it to lower Ottoway on day 1
-Washburn on day 2
-LYV on day 3
-hike half dome and out to GP on day 4

We made it to Lower Ottoway on day 1 but were pretty spent. On day 2 we came up about 4 mi short of Washburn. Even though the distance from Ottoway to Washburn looks comparable or shorter than Glacier Point to Ottoway (on my cheap map), it seemed much longer. This could have been the altitude having its way with a couple of rookies though. Day 3 we camped in some nondescript wooded area between Bunnell Point and LYV, and day 4 we skipped half dome and hobbled out to glacier point.

All in all it was a great trip. If I could change anything, I would have added another day and taken it a little easier, perhaps then we might have had enough juice to do half dome.

I don't remember any stream crossings causing any trouble. We did have to walk on a fair amount of snow coming down from Red Peak Pass, but it wasn't too difficult. This was in early September of the monster snow year.

Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 13, 2012 12:33PM
Thanks for the comments - We plan on taking it easy the first 2 days to Ottoway and then leaving very early on day 3 to make it to Washburn - It's about 14 or 15 miles - I know this is aggressive and we may not make it but I want to try - I figure if we wake at the crack of dawn and leave early, we might get there by 6PM - We would have an extra day of acclimation with the altitude plus it's pretty much downhill after RPP - I made it from Merced Lake to the Valley in half a day so I hope we can do it.

Loved you in Caddyshack - In the immortal words of Jean Paul Sartre, 'Au revoir, gopher'
Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 13, 2012 12:39PM
Quote
SoCalCPA
leaving very early on day 3 to make it to Washburn - It's about 14 or 15 miles

You will regret that, IMO. The section over from Lower Ottoway over Red Peak Pass is something to be savored, not blitzed. Try to make up time on one of the other legs instead.
Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 13, 2012 01:27PM
If you haven't considered it, if you're trying to make Washburn in a day from Ottoway, consider heading down Red Peak fork (easy cross country, no real routefinding challenges) from Red Devil Lake--you'll miss some wonderful country, but see some other wonderful country. You can head upstream a bit once at the Merced River to cross on a bridge. Here are a few pix from a similar July 4 trip during a much wetter year.
avatar Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 14, 2012 04:09PM
You campspot at Red Devil looks awesome. (looks like 100 chick-on feet from the wawa to me)

Probably I was skewed towards the tarns higher b/c ... well they have special meaning to me...

That's the thing about Yosemite. There's literally a zillion kick booty places to camp.



Chick-on is looking at you!
avatar Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 12, 2012 07:01PM
I seem to recall fish at both Upper and Lower Merced Pass Lakes.
Pretty sure. Not certain.

Z wife and I plan to do some lake touring in that area very very soon... and
if I happen to hike by those too... I'll get your answer for certain. Or with some certainty.

Old maps and stuff def. show Rainbows there... but the same map also show EB
at Minnow... and I can almost guarantee you that that lake is fishless now.
(there were some monsters in there when I last visited it... many moons ago)

I like the tarns on the east side of RPP way more than Red Devil. I dunno..
Red Devil is fishless... but lots of froggies... Edna... now that's a gem. Fishies and an
incredible "island".

Have fun



Chick-on is looking at you!
avatar Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 26, 2012 10:00AM
Quote
chick-on

I like the tarns on the east side of RPP way more than Red Devil. I dunno..
Red Devil is fishless... but lots of froggies... Edna... now that's a gem. Fishies and an
incredible "island".

There appears to be an inverse correlation between the number of fish in a Sierra lake and the number of frogs around the lake.

A lot of frogs = little or no fish.

A lot of fish = little or no frogs.

Never been to a Sierra alpine or sub-alpine lake that had both a lot of frogs and a lot of fish. The two appear to be mutually exclusive.

In other words, if you're trying to fish avoid lakes with a lot of frogs. smiling smiley

.
Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 13, 2012 07:06AM
Thanks Chick-On!

We will also try out these lakes and report back - Will be there the end of June.

Edna is tempting and I have heard is a very pretty lake too. That will have to be for another trip though.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/13/2012 07:06AM by SoCalCPA.
avatar Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 13, 2012 07:18AM
Here was a post I did on Edna in case you haven't seen it:
http://yosemitenews.info/forum/read.php?3,28614
(edit: oops... wife would love this one... I wrote the outlet was upper right... it's upper left!)

Wanna check out the lake SW of Merced Peak... and Hoover Lakes... so prob. end up there
at some point by next Wed. I'll let you know if it happens.

Have fun

edit: additionally... Grayling has fish in it... but wife or I just cannot recall seeing fish in U/L MP Lakes
we are both saying that it would be very unlikely that they don't though... TBD



Chick-on is looking at you!



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/13/2012 07:21AM by chick-on.
Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 13, 2012 08:19AM
Wow! Very cool lake - and that island does look like a whale coming up for air -

I don't think there are any trails to Edna - I have always been too much of a novice to venture off the trail but many of the pretty incredible pictures you post are giving me quite the incentive to do just that - just want to figure out how to be smart about it first
avatar Re: Ottoway Lake Loop - Inquiries
June 19, 2012 06:55AM
We did a loop starting at Illilouette Ridge (really) and dropped down into Illilouette Canyon
and up to Windy Lake on day 1. Day 2 was past Nooutlet Lake and all 3 Hoovers.
From there we went straight up to Buena Vista Crest.... and then over to BV Lake and
up Horse Ridge. Day 3 out.
So.. since Z wifie lopped one day off the trip from the get-go... we just didn't have the
time to visit Merced Pass Lakes... but.. with what I now know... I'd be flabergasted
if there weren't fish in both.

Have fun



Chick-on is looking at you!
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