Sounds like the 23rd-24th is going to be the best bet. I know that means some folks won't be able to make it, and I apologize, but I think that was bound to happen no matter which days we picked. Plus, there ought to be enough time left in Sept that we can try it again if we want to.
I spoke to a decidedly cheerful girl in the Sierra National Forest offices today to inquire about fire restrictions. As it stands now, campfires are only allowed in designated campgrounds, with stoves/lanterns allowed everywhere. I realize that predicting the future is a bit much to ask for, but we discussed what we'd be likely to find in August, and it all boiled down to "No". She says she has no way to know for certain, but when I asked "If I knew people who were planning to travel for several hours to get to the forest, would you gamble that they would be able to have a campfire in a designated campground?" her answer was "No, she would have to bet that by then fire restrictions would be even more severe." So that's a bummer, but we can make do. If we stack enough KTM plastics in the middle of the fire ring it'll look like a blazing campfire, right?
I'm thinking dispersed camping near Glen Meadow creek. There are no facilities there, but Dinkey is only 3-4 miles away with such niceties as showers and bathrooms for those of you unwilling to do what bears do in the woods (which, as near as I can tell is walk around sniffing at bushes and gnawing on stuff...).
View Larger Map
You see that map? That map looks nothing like the one I have open in another tab, from which I used Google's fancy little embed code. My map looks like this:
And shows the mileage and time correct. Nifty feature that-there Google is...
As it stands now, Shesaid and I are planning to go up early on Friday (work is over rated) and return on Monday. So we ought to get there in plenty of time to stake out good spots, and in so doing, make it easier for anyone who wants to leave after work on Friday to be able to meet up. Or even Saturday if need be. We ought to be able to whip up a couple of signs to let folks know where to turn. I'm hoping to be able to pre-run a lot of the area and post up GPX files for others to download, but I have no idea how that works for those of you on the receiving end.
Ok, I'm going to go edit the first post, should I add the names of those who said they could make those dates?