The High Sierra Passes thread. Tales and Photos

Discussion in 'West – California, the desert southwest and whatev' started by wrk2surf, Dec 5, 2016.

  1. yobuddy

    yobuddy Been here awhile

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    108 is a go now. Looks like 4 and 120 will be awhile. Camping is plentiful in the Sierra's. 88 has good camping at Pipi Valley. If your near Bridgeport Virginia Creek Settlement is fun to stay at. They have a restaurant on site so you can enjoy the evening without having to ride anywhere. Lots of options. Let me know if you need any help, I am near 108 in Oakdale.
  2. DSchmidt7of7

    DSchmidt7of7 Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the offer 'yobuddy'. It's always nice to have folks willing to help out. Not sure when I'll be passing through Oakdale, but I'll put Pipi and Virginia Creek on my list of things to check out. For now I gotta keep an eye on the weather reports and then decide if I "stay high" or go further north. I'll post some photos once I get to anything interesting.

    As far as updates on other roads I just read the following on the Yosemite NP website: "The El Portal Road (continuation of Highway 140 into Yosemite Valley from El Portal) is closed due to rockfall. Access to Yosemite Valley is still possible via Highways 41 and 120 from the west. Call 209/372-0200 (then dial 1 then 1) for any updates."

    Ride safe.
  3. Andrew

    Andrew Optimus Primer Administrator Super Moderator

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    Kaiser Pass is now open, so anyone up for a challenge can try to get to Florence or Edison reservoirs. I don't think Dusy-Ershim is open yet, though.
  4. michaeln

    michaeln What're YOU lookin' at? Supporter

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    As far as camping and riding goes, Highway 4 is not closed. Only a few miles on top is closed. There are gorgeous riding and camping areas available on both the western and eastern slopes. Calaveras Big Trees is one example. You can get all the way up to Lake Alpine at 7400 feet from the west side, and Silver Lake Campground at about the same level from the east side.

    Lots of places in the Stanislaus National Forest too... see this site:

    https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/stanislaus/recarea/?recid=14835
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  5. 2on2off

    2on2off Head'n somewhere new

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    Kaiser Pass to Edison and Florence lake is open. Lots of snow on the side of the road at 9200 ft. Lakes are full and there are water falls on the side of the road I have never seen before.
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]


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  6. bdesj

    bdesj Long timer

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    Wow, that`s pretty! I had to Google that stuff up because I had never heard of it before, haha! Looks like even with the pass open there`s no access on the east side, have to get in and out from the west?
  7. michaeln

    michaeln What're YOU lookin' at? Supporter

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    Gorgeous, thank you for the pictures and report, Jim!
  8. 2on2off

    2on2off Head'n somewhere new

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    Yes. It is one way in and out but is worth the ride especially now.

    The Vermillion resort, just west a few miles from Edison Lake Dam, hosts PCT hikers and has a store and cafe. Great destination and the views on this ride are spectacular.


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  9. 2on2off

    2on2off Head'n somewhere new

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    You also ride past Mono Hot Springs on the way to Edison


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  10. michaeln

    michaeln What're YOU lookin' at? Supporter

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    I love looping the passes, but if the passes are closed I don't mind up&backs.
  11. bdesj

    bdesj Long timer

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    I did`t see it here yet, and this thread is usually where I see anything first. Do I get excited, or did I misread it?
    http://www.kolotv.com/content/news/...n-on-Monday-Caltrans-announces-429116433.html

    Any rate, already have plans to two-up tomorrow to Sonora Pass and back. Tioga is beyond the range of my wife`s butt, I think. Leaving for Mexico later in the week, sure hope Ebbetts is open when I get home. Will make myself a DANDY loop then :-)

    EDIT: Ah, to the pass, but not all the way through yet.
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  12. michaeln

    michaeln What're YOU lookin' at? Supporter

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    Found that same article on another site. I think what it says is that 120 running west from 395 up to the east Yosemite gate will be open at 2PM Monday, but the gate is closed, and Tioga Road running west from the East Gate is closed. Very poorly written and confusing article.
  13. Andrew

    Andrew Optimus Primer Administrator Super Moderator

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    Thanks for the report, nice shots!
    How were the potholes, the general condition of the road? It was really hurting when I drove my car on it last year.
  14. bdesj

    bdesj Long timer

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    Yeah, its about as clear as convfefe. I have read several times lately that CalTrans is taking care of the section from 395 to the park entrance and NPS is taking Tioga Rd west from the entrance, apparently behind CalTrans progress wise. Maybe they opened the state maintained section? The entrance is right at the pass, isn`t it?
  15. 2on2off

    2on2off Head'n somewhere new

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    Yes, there are pot holes to watch out for and the road is rough to Edison and Florence lakes. No problem on my Africa Twin but it is a rough ride in a cage.


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  16. duitswes

    duitswes NAM Biker in CA

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    Spoke to a ranger last sat. Another couple of weeks before the park opens to Toulumne meadows.

    Website says they were still worried about avalanches on June 15.
  17. michaeln

    michaeln What're YOU lookin' at? Supporter

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    Left the house in Angels Camp about 5:15AM, and headed up Highway 4. Plan was to ride up to Lake Alpine, take a look, and return home. It was actually pretty cold above 7,000 feet, and around Bear Valley I turned on the grip heaters. Highway 4 is still closed just east of Lake Alpine. Lake Alpine seems to be ice-free now, the warm temps have done their job:

    [​IMG]

    If you make the run up there early to escape the heat, beware... the mosquitos are out in force, and early morning they are on the hunt for blood. I only stopped for pictures this one time because they just made it too unpleasant to not be moving. Next time I will remember repellent!
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  18. bdesj

    bdesj Long timer

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    Change-o-plans.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Maintenance man at Tioga Lodge has his work cut out for him...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
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  19. michaeln

    michaeln What're YOU lookin' at? Supporter

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    Wow, so the park is open, East gate over Tuolumne Meadows? Enjoyed your pictures! The hot tubs in those cabins appear to be leaking some.
  20. bdesj

    bdesj Long timer

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    Check out the roof over the front entrance, too!

    The GATE is open, but that`s as far as you can get. They have it blocked off right after that. Actually less snow up there than I expected, but it sure is pretty! Water running off everything, it seems like. We also detoured up to a little fishing lake/lodge/trailhead that cuts off 395 about a quarter mile south of 108. Can`t remember the name of it, and Google does not give me a name either! Anybody have a hint for me? That on was mostly ice with a few spots of deep turquoise water here and there. Stayed in Lee Vining last night, hit up South Tufa for sunset. Rode June Lake loop this morning, which was probably even better than Tioga. Wanted to continue with an out-and-back up Sonora on the way home, but were nursing a slow leak in the rear tire, decided against it. I`ll put up some more pics later of June Lakes and that other lake, don`t have time to battle with PhotoBucket any more tonight.
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