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Re: Help with Foodplan, meal ideas for GA/May/Sunrise//Cathedral hike in Sept

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Help with Foodplan, meal ideas for GA/May/Sunrise//Cathedral hike in Sept
June 11, 2018 01:39PM
Hello Everyone!

I'm reposting this question as a new topic since I messed up posting it to an older post. I'm hoping for some help/input regarding our foodplan for a trip in Sept. We just got a permit for GA in early Sept and we have worked up the following hikeplan:

Day 1: TM to GA
Day 2: GA to Raisin Lake
Day 3: Raisin Lake to Middle Sunrise Lake
Day 4: Middle Sunrise Lake to HSC
Day 5: HSC to Cathedral Lake
Day 6: Cathedral Lake to TM

We are not total beginners, but it has been 10 years since our last trip up to TM (when we hiked 4 nights TM/Sunrise/Merced Lake to valley) and I've lost all feeling for devising a reasonable food plan.

We have a BV500 cannister and are a party of 2. Our hike plan is five nights, and I was planning on planting food at the Tenaya bearbox YE03 to pick up on our way up to Sunrise and to save weight/space on the GA/Raising Lake leg.

I thought I'd use the bearbox YE03 at Tenaya cause I'm not sure I can fit 5 nights/days of food for 2 in a BV500 (though I guess I can carry Day 1 meal outside the canniser).

Sooo....assuming I resupply from Bearbox YE03 then am I safe to believe that I would have plenty of room in a BV500 for 4 days, 3 nights for party of 2 (assuming MH meals for dinners, oatmeal breakfasts and tortillas & tuna packs for lunches, plus snacks)?

Also, just so I understand, if I restock from the Tenaya bearbox after my descent from May Lake, am I OK to carry one day/meal outside the cannister on the way up to Sunrise?

Am I in the right ballpark so far?

And about those MH dinners....OK we can do that, but for a hikeplan like this does anyone have any other fun/different ideas that they've tried lately?

And am I the only one left who still uses a Svea123 stove? smiling smiley My Better Half mocks me and I'll bring along a Pocket Rocket to appease her but i LOVE my SVEA!

Thanks I've loved reading the posts on this forum!
Re: Help with Foodplan, meal ideas for GA/May/Sunrise//Cathedral hike in Sept
June 11, 2018 01:57PM
I don't believe you're allowed to cache food at the bear boxes but I could be wrong on that. You can carry your day 1 food outside of the bear can so all you'd have to fit is 4 days worth.

Regarding different ideas for food, have you considered dehydrating your own meals or using some one pot meal recipes available online? Same good ones available at trailcooking and trail.recipes

And while the Svea123 is a nice stove, I'd suggest just bringing a pocket rocket if you're just going to use mountain houses/need only boiling water. Use the saved weight there to bring extra goodies like dessert Feed ME!



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/11/2018 03:44PM by KevinD.
Absolutely you can cache food in the bear boxes by the trailheads - that's what they're there for.
Re: Help with Foodplan, meal ideas for GA/May/Sunrise//Cathedral hike in Sept
June 14, 2018 11:20AM
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Not quite The Geezer, but getting there
Absolutely you can cache food in the bear boxes by the trailheads - that's what they're there for.

No, that's not what they are there for. The bear boxes where put there so that backpackers could store food and scented items they were not taking on their trip, so that bears don't become habituated.

They were not put there to make it more convenient for hikers, particularly when they are capable of carrying their own food and even more so when there are bear boxes along the route that they could use.

I'm not sure if it is illegal in Yosemite, but it is in Sequoia. Either way, it's not the intended purpose and makes it harder for people doing the right thing just for the convenience of others. That's probably why it's illegal in Sequoia; the bear boxes filled up with food caches so backpackers couldn't use them.
A note with name and estimated retrieval date would be very appropriate.

oops replying to post shown below.



- Billy Joel



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/14/2018 02:08PM by JRinGeorgia.
Quote
buster
Quote
Not quite The Geezer, but getting there
Absolutely you can cache food in the bear boxes by the trailheads - that's what they're there for.

No, that's not what they are there for. The bear boxes where put there so that backpackers could store food and scented items they were not taking on their trip, so that bears don't become habituated.

They were not put there to make it more convenient for hikers, particularly when they are capable of carrying their own food and even more so when there are bear boxes along the route that they could use.

I'm not sure if it is illegal in Yosemite, but it is in Sequoia. Either way, it's not the intended purpose and makes it harder for people doing the right thing just for the convenience of others. That's probably why it's illegal in Sequoia; the bear boxes filled up with food caches so backpackers couldn't use them.

Buster, I'm not sure what to make of your post, it's kind of confusing.

Speaking for myself, whether I'm day hiking or backpacking, if I've got food or scented stuff that I'm not taking on the trail and there's a bear box at the trailhead, I'm going to put my stuff in the smallest container available and put that in the bear box - it's better for my car, and better for the bears, than leaving the stuff in the vehicle. And if it's not a dayhike, then I do like JRinGeorgia said - leave a note with my name and expected pick-up date.

The itinerary that EdelKev posted is a multiday backpacking trip, one that would likely pass by the Sunrise Lakes trailhead on the third day. Caching food for the remainder of the trip in one of the bear boxes at that trailhead is an eminently sensible - and, insofar as I know, permissible - use of those boxes.

If you can cite a source showing that there's a park rule that says he can't do that, I'd appreciate seeing the cite - as I'm sure would EdelKev and many others on this forum.
Thanks Buster and Geezer. Your posts inspired me to dig around a bit more and while I am not local and am a noob here is what I found:

1. A Yosemite veteran on another board send me the link to the Yosemite Superintendent's Compendium (https://www.nps.gov/yose/learn/management/upload/compendium.pdf), and as best I can find the food storage regulations listed there (at page 17) make no mention of a prohibition against caching food at bear boxes.

2. The Yosemite site doesn't state a prohibition against caching...but it does state that "Hanging food is illegal throughout Yosemite.": https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/bearcans.htm The Bear Box page on Yosemite's site does not state a proibition against caching: https://www.nps.gov/yose/planyourvisit/lockers.htm.

3. The "Wilderness Food Storage" page on the Sequoia site states: "In areas where food storage containers are not required, you may use a food storage box if available. Keep in mind that you must share these boxes with other hikers; locks are not permitted on them. Carry rope for hanging food in case the box is full or you don't camp where you intended. The caching of food and gear in food storage boxes is not permitted within Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks." https://www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/bear_bc.htm

So in Sequoia caching is expressly forbidden but I find no express prohibition in any Yosemite materials, including the Superintendent's Compendium. Also Sequoia allows hanging food while Yosemite expressly forbids food hanging. So in Sequoia they seem to ban caching in bear boxes but allow food hanging (so you can hang any food that may not fit in your cannister), so it makes sense that caching would be allowed in Yosemite because, unlike in Sequoia, food hanging is prohibited.

Anyway, this is what I found online in my efforts to get savvy. I just want to be a good and right camper and know what I can do if for some reason all my food doesn't fit in my cannister.

Does all this seem to make sense?

Also, I see from the Bear Box page on Climber.org that there are 10 boxes at Tenaya lake: http://www.climber.org/data/BearBoxes/AllBoxes.html. ...How much use to those boxes actually get? We will be there in the first week of Sept.

Thanks!
Re: Help with Foodplan, meal ideas for GA/May/Sunrise//Cathedral hike in Sept
June 15, 2018 02:50PM
Yea I was thinking on the lines of SEKI but looks like its ok to do at Yose so you're good to go in the department!
I think my only suggestion would be to use one of the lockers further away from the trailhead. Last time I used a box for a dayhike, I guess someone used the same one and left it open when they grabbed their items. Would hate for you trip to go south due to someone doing that :/
Re: Help with Foodplan, meal ideas for GA/May/Sunrise//Cathedral hike in Sept
June 17, 2018 07:16AM
First the distinction between leaving extra scented items at the trailhead and caching food. Leaving extra scented items at the trailhead is fairly obvious. This is stuff you don't want to take on your hike but have so you want to store it securely to protect the bears. Caching food is stuff you want to take on your hike but don't for whatever reason. The first is a need if you want to protect bears and have people be in the wilderness. The second is entirely optional.

Yes, it is not illegal but that doesn’t mean it isn’t without impact. If only a few people do it, it isn’t a big deal, but if a lot of people do it, it is. That’s generally how many rules in the parks evolved, if enough people do something with negative impacts it it will become illegal.

In this case, if enough people cache food it fills up the bear lockers so that hikers are unable to store their scented items. This is not a fictitious issue, hence why I mentioned it was illegal in Sequoia, a nearby area with similar users.

My opposition isn’t that no one should ever food cache in the trailhead lockers and you are a terrible person if you do. It is first to point out that bear lockers weren’t meant to be food caches and second that food caching is tolerated but not an approved practice and you could be negatively impacting someone else, either directly or in the future. In short, it is not 100% ok but a decision with multiple factors to consider

I think why this particular case struck a nerve, is that the OP is stating that they want to do the Right Thing™ but it’s pretty obvious there is a strong ulterior motive to not carry as much weight. If they are staying at GA they can use the bear boxes there, that should solve most of the issues as it's only one night of food. There are lockers at May Lake and Sunrise where they can easily stay at. Or they could each carry a canister and if weight is really an issue, the OP could carry most of the weight during the day and then use both canisters at night. And those are solutions I just came up with now, there are probably more.
I am the OP on this post and I'd like to thank EVERYONE who has taken the time to respond to my posts and questions. I have tried to be clear in my posts regarding my level of experience (i.e. somewhat experienced hiker but not veryy experienced in Yosemite and its rules --both written and unspoken) and my intentions, and I appreciate the opportunity to have a discussion on this forum so I can better understand the way that experienced and conscientious Yosemites use the Park and interact with each other (both on and off trail). I have found this and other Yose forums to be very informative and supportive! So thanks very much in particular to Geezer, Buster, JR and KevinD for your comments!

Regarding the issue of food caching, the consensus of the comments as I see it is 1) food caching is not expressly prohibited by Yosemite's rules and regulations, but 2) there seems to be a difference of opinion/understanding as to whether food caching is a proper and conscientious practice. Some view the practice of food caching to be totally OK and others view it to be allowed under the rules but an abuse/bending of the rules.

At the risk of sounding a bit defensive, I'd like to clarify that my question about food caching had nothing to do with avoiding/minimizing food weight. My concern was the capacity of our BV500 and how to plan rule-compliant food storage for all 6 days of the hike in the event everything didn't quite fit. A second cannister is obviously one solution, but my question about caching was inspired because I had seen an experienced Yosemite hiker suggest caching on another post and I wanted to start a more detailed discussion so I could better understand the practice.

I understand Buster's concerns about the potential impact of caching. I realize now that I didnt't skillfully articulate this in my original question but impact was one of my concerns and was one of the reasons why I posted the question. I know that there are 20 large boxes at the Tenaya Lake / Sunrise trailhead, only 2 standard boxes at GA, 2 large boxes at May Lake and 2 large boxes at Sunrise. I also knew that there are 18 large boxes at TM kiosk and 5 at TM backpacker camp. I also knew that there is no camping at Tenaya Lake, so there is no overnight camping use of the 10 large boxes. What I don't know is what is the actual use/capacity of the Tenaya lake boxes and whether capacity is an issue, especially in early Sept when we would be there. If the 10 Tenaya boxes are are often full, then yes I would see that caching there would be legal but inconsiderate, and in that case I definitely would not cache. If the 10 Tenaya boxes are always/usually mostly empty, and if caching is not prohibited, then it seems there is minimal potential impact and maybe caching would be something to at least think about. Either way, I dont have enough past experience at the Park to know these basic things, and that's why I love being able to ask questions and receive input on forums like this.

Also, unless I'm not understanding the rules, I don't quite understand how I would be using the boxes at May Lake or Sunrise HSC if my hike starts at GA and if I'm not caching at Tenaya YE03. If I start from GA and I am not caching at Tenaya then all of my food etc (except for my Day 1 food) must fit in the cannister on Day 1 for the whole trip and I wouldn't be using the May Lake or Sunrise boxes. Also, in terms of impact, I would not want to use the May Lake or Sunrise boxes anyway since there are only 2 boxes at those locations and, as a multi-day hiker mid-trip, I wouldn't want to impact anyone who was storing their Day 1 out-of-cannister food in those boxes. And if I am caching, then I would prefer to cache in one of the 10 Tenaya boxes (rather than using HSC boxes) so that during the entire trip all of my food is in cannister except for my Day 1 food at GA. Also, if I were caching at Tenaya, it is my understanding that I would NOT have any out-of-cannister food going up to Sunrise after the Tenaya cache resupply (i.e. the only 1-day out-of-cannister is from the Day 1 trailhead).

Anyway, this may have been much ado if all of our food other than the Day 1 food fits in the cannister, and, if not, then we may still rent the 2nd cannister, but I appreciate the opportunity to explore and better understand the full range of options, and, in any event, it seems my question brought to light a divergence of views regarding the propriety of caching, so maybe this gives others some food for thought (as it were) regarding this practice [?]
Thanks Kevin & Geezer. It's good to know that we can cache food at Tenaya if need be. We've never used the boxes before. So is there unwritten bear box "etiquette" or a particularly "correct" and proper way to cache food in the boxes, like leaving a note with your name and estimated retrieval date, etc? We'd be caching more than half our food supply...has anyone had a problem with tampering at a Tenaya Lake (or other parking lot) box?
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