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Re: Poison Oak

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avatar Poison Oak
June 09, 2013 09:35PM
Does anyone happen to know if there is any chance or poison oak being in Yosemite at all?
Re: Poison Oak
June 09, 2013 09:41PM
Quote
forrestranger
Does anyone happen to know if there is any chance or poison oak being in Yosemite at all?

Absolutely. The wooded area near the great Zig Zag on the abandoned Old Big Oak Flat Road is full of it. I believe that this is a fairly new phenomenon, due to the less severe winters that we have been having....

I don't recall seeing any above about 5000 feet.
avatar Re: Poison Oak
June 09, 2013 09:58PM
Same thing with the Hetch Hetchy Area - P.O. along the trail to Rancheria Falls, especially the stretch after Wapama Falls, and on the climb from Hetch Hetchy towards Laurel Lake. Dies out on the latter route about 5000 ft.
Re: Poison Oak
June 17, 2013 07:07AM
Quote
ttilley
Same thing with the Hetch Hetchy Area - P.O. along the trail to Rancheria Falls, especially the stretch after Wapama Falls, and on the climb from Hetch Hetchy towards Laurel Lake. Dies out on the latter route about 5000 ft.

"along the trail" means stay on the trail and you should be fine? I will be doing that hike with the family in two weeks. I just want to make sure everyone is aware of what PO is, looks like and what it can do to a vacation.
avatar Re: Poison Oak
June 17, 2013 08:25AM
It's not like the Ventana Wilderness where the PO grows out into the trail. However, the short shaded stretch after Wapama...just don't step off the trail. I'm pretty sensitive to it, and didn't have any issues when I hiked to Rancheria Falls a few years ago.

Here's the relevant Wikipedia article, w/ pictures. If you search for further info online, specifically search for "western poison oak" - its not the same species as the poison oak in the southeast.
avatar Re: Poison Oak
June 10, 2013 06:40AM
Quote
wherever
Quote
forrestranger
Does anyone happen to know if there is any chance or poison oak being in Yosemite at all?

Absolutely. The wooded area near the great Zig Zag on the abandoned Old Big Oak Flat Road is full of it. I believe that this is a fairly new phenomenon, due to the less severe winters that we have been having....

I don't recall seeing any above about 5000 feet.

Went into the zig zags in 2006:


Is that recent? smiling smiley

(thought it appropriate since other post had Mountain King Snake)



Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Poison Oak
June 10, 2013 08:29AM
I saw some on the switchbacks from White Wolf to Pate Valley and just east of PV last summer.
Re: Poison Oak
June 11, 2013 06:56PM
Nice snake, awful plant. ;-)

Thanks for the warning on Poison Oak at low elevations!

I have suferred from poison oak only twice. Both times when I was backpacking in the Lost Coast. It is everywhere in that area, and hard to avoid in overgrown trails. sad smiley



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/11/2013 07:09PM by elicali.
avatar Re: Poison Oak
June 11, 2013 07:02PM
I'd have to dig up the pic, it was in the ancient days of film, but just south of Buck Creek (Lost Coast), in October, I have a picture of a rock covered by the most beautiful collection of red leaves. Which were poison oak. For such a hideous plant it has astonishingly beautiful fall color.
Re: Poison Oak
June 13, 2013 01:17PM
Quote
wherever
Quote
forrestranger
Does anyone happen to know if there is any chance or poison oak being in Yosemite at all?

Absolutely. The wooded area near the great Zig Zag on the abandoned Old Big Oak Flat Road is full of it.

This is pretty much where I got nailed last year, despite long sleeves & pants. Enough of the oil got on my skin, and I ended up using some prescription skin cream for a week. It's also where I lost a pair of Bolle shades. If I see a bird wearing them, I'll know they've been recovered. tongue sticking out smiley
avatar Re: Poison Oak
June 13, 2013 02:47PM
Quote
Ohnivy-Drak
I ended up using some prescription skin cream for a week

Next time ask your doctor for some oral corticosteroids. The cream provides some relief but the pills speed healing.
avatar Re: Poison Oak
June 09, 2013 09:53PM
thanks wherever smiling smiley
avatar Re: Poison Oak
June 10, 2013 02:59AM
Tenaya Canyon above Mirror Lake is thick with it on the north side. You're walking through it on the climbers trail to Mt Watkins.

I was exploring the old construction works above the Hetch Hetchy Dam one time and suddenly thought "I should be careful of poison oak" only to look around and realize I was straddling a bush with bright shinny red leafs. Opps! Those shoes and pants were set aside when I got home!
avatar Re: Poison Oak
June 10, 2013 06:38AM
Posted this on another forum a couple years ago:

"The upper range is probably right around 5000 ft. elevation.
Around Yosemite it is found up to around that elevation along the Tuolumne and Merced Rivers.
This includes Preston Falls area, Poopenaut, Hetch Hetchy, Rancheria, and Pate all the way to
Register Creek.... and more copious amounts near Kolana (Hetch Hetchy).
Yes, I've seen PO in all those locations... and got smacked in v. early spring heading
north towards Swamp Lake from Poopenaut. (no leaves... got it on my nose... not fun)
Along the Merced... ALL along there including to Yosemite Valley... (but mainly south facing slopes)
(i.e. Rockslides if you really want to see it)... and up Tenaya Canyon/Creek (loads there too) until
near Watkins. Before park ... Moss Creek and Hite Cove are delicious areas for PO.
Can't recall much near Wawona though... even though it is well < 5K."

Since then... there is indeed some near Wawona ... waiting for someone to do the old road
and yell at me... tongue sticking out smiley Also... Lower reaches of Cherry Creek Canyon.

Learn what it looks like... and eventually you won't catch it. (seems I was always blasting thru it on
every trip to Coe before finally got smart)



Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Poison Oak
June 11, 2013 02:37PM
Quote
chick-on
Since then... there is indeed some near Wawona ... waiting for someone to do the old road
and yell at me... tongue sticking out smiley

But there's no chance in brushing against it on the old road, is there? I mean, it's not like you have to crawl over/under/through anything! Rolling on floor laugh

Seriously, I'm embarrassed to admit I haven't been attentive about this...no problems so far but given some of the stuff I've plowed through on my old-road treks, it's anybody's guess what I've encountered. It'd be nice to think that I'm just immune to it but, just in case, think I'll be a bit more observant next time!
avatar Re: Poison Oak
June 11, 2013 05:05PM
Consider this fair warning. smiling smiley



Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Poison Oak
June 13, 2013 06:14AM
I spent a good deal of my life thinking I was immune too, that is until a good cross country escapade near Santa Barbara proved to me otherwise. Seriously though, if you do any foothills hiking east of Sacramento or in the Bay Area, the stuff seems like the only plant growing at times. It's pretty tough to avoid in certain areas.

A method I use--and this is faith talking here not science--when I know I've gone through the stuff is to put some handsanitizer on the exposed area. I'll then use some water to wash it off. For a while there I'd use technu in the shower after a hike too, but not recently.

I guess this is another reason why the High Sierras are great, no PO. Less ticks too.
Re: Poison Oak
June 12, 2013 09:46PM
As someone that began visiting the Valley decades ago, I have always seen it in talus areas which pretty much are below all cliff areas. Even though trails and roads avoid talus, climbers have always had to climb there way up through boulders and quickly learn to be aware of it. I'd expect the main reason one does not see it at more central areas of The Valley is because people are all over those areas and have likely been removing it since humans first lived there. The base of The Rockslides is absolutely full of the three leaved menace and those areas are also good places to see rattlesnakes and black bears during the day. Likewise one will find PO in most other Sierra canyons at 4000 feet also although it is certainly not as dense as when one is lower. As chick-on noted, 5000 feet is more likely to be free of that itchy stuff.





http://www.davidsenesac.com



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/12/2013 09:55PM by DavidSenesac.
Re: Poison Oak
June 16, 2013 10:09AM
I got poison Oak on a trip to Big Sur a few years back. Not even sure how it got me, but I had outbreaks around my ankles and feet. I got no medicine, just showered the area with near scalding water which alleviated the itching for several hours. Eventually they healed on their own.
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