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Pass/Gap | High Sierra Backpacker

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 Defines Mountain Passes and gaps between drainages.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Sonora Pass - Mono Road, Clarks Fork Road History

Below we have a chronology of the history of Western travel over the areas South, North, and that now crossed by Highway 108 through Sonora Pass.

Sonora-Mono Toll Road.

This history evolved in three parts as its route evolved.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Highland's 2014 Upper Clarks Fork Unmaintained Tahoe to Yosemite Trail Report


Highlands Reports on the Unmaintained and Untrailed Segment of the Tahoe to Yosemite Trail through the Upper Clarks Fork of the Stanislaus River


Last year we hiked from 108 over St Mary's Pass to Iceberg Meadow.

We did it in mid-June. There was a good amount of snow at the pass  but we manage our way over and around it. 

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Ebbetts Pass Backpacking Weather

 Weather Information from real time reporting stations around Ebbetts Pass, as well as long term forecasts, with current satellite and radar views.  

Ebbetts Pass Point Forecast

Ebbetts Pass real time reporting station

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Janice "Pepperoni" Raddatz and Harmony near Meiss Meadow

July 16, 2009.

Encounter with Janice "Pepperoni" Radditz and her fine horse, Harmony.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Kingsbury/ NV 207 2014-2015 Summer Construction

Cayenne posted up this important-informative notice of upcoming long term work on Nevada Highway 207, Kingsbury Grade. THANKS!

Kingsbury Grade connects the South end of the Carson Valley with the Southeast corner of South Lake Tahoe. Kingsbury Grade hits the Tahoe shore a bit South of Stateline in South Lake Tahoe. There's a road map showing Kingsbury Grade at just above Cayenne's original post. Kingsbury Grade is at the top of the map.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Upper Lunch Meadow to Brown Bear Pass

Backpacking South over the last mile and a half up to Brown Bear Pass from Upper Lunch Meadow we first encounter the trail junction teeing off to the South over Mosquito Pass to Emigrant Lake a half-mile above Upper Lunch Meadow.

This map covers this potential route

Emigrant Wilderness Map

Emigrant Lake is the third lake down the Canyon of the North fork of Cherry Creek from Emigrant Meadow Lake in Emigrant Meadow.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Riggs Scouts the trail before Gina's Mule Train passes through

Riggs, Gina the Kennedy Meadows horsepacker's dog. Note how Riggs is trotting up the granite formation to look over the other side. Riggs is scouting out all the terrain along the trail. Riggs checks things out.

I knew a pack train was coming up the mountain, for I had been scouted out by its scout.

Gina comes by with the mules, as expected.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Blue Butterflies, Carson Gap, High Sierra, Lake Tahoe Basin

Blue Butterflies, Carson Gap, High Sierra. Meiss Country Roadless Area.

Blue Butterfly along the Pacific Crest and Tahoe to Yosemite Trails.


Blue Butterflies puddling at the Carson Gap Pond, exiting Lake Tahoe Basin.

Date: July 16, 2009 

Elevation: 8800 feet

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Butterfly, Burnt Orange, and Buckwheat, High Sierra, Emigrant Wilderness

Butterfly, Burnt Orange, and Buckwheat, High Sierra, Emigrant Wilderness, Stanislaus National Forest. Sighted approaching Bond Pass to enter Yosemite from the High Emigrant Basin.

Butterfly near Bond Pass, burnt orange color, Emigrant Wilderness, Stanislaus National Forest.

Date: July 27, 2009.

Elevation; 9360 feet.

Trail Guide: Summit Meadow

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Snake, Hibernating, High Sierra, Yosemite

Hibernating Snake heading South to Stubblefield Canyon from Wilmer Lake after crossing Macomb Ridge. Fall, Late September 2009.

High Sierra Snake hibernating in Yosemite backcountry.

This snake was "pulled-in" at both ends. You could not tell the head from the tail. The snake was nestled below a rock making up a step of the trail.


Trail Guide Page: Not Completed

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Ebbetts Pass on the Pacific Crest Trail

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This is the place for extra information about Ebbetts Pass to supplement the Ebbetts Pass trail guide page, along with your questions, comments, and experiences at Ebbetts Pass.

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Alex Wierbinski's picture

The Carson Gap

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The Carson Gap

The Carson Gap is a low point in the mountains along the Southeastern edge of the Lake Tahoe Rim. The Carson Gap makes up the Southern entrance and exit from the Tahoe Basin for Backpackers heading North and South on either the Tahoe to Yosemite or the Pacific Crest Trails.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Meiss Cabin South to the Carson Gap

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Meiss Cabin to Carson Gap

This is the comments, questions, and extra information Forum Page for the trail guide pages between Meiss Cabin and the Carson Gap.

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Lodgepole Squirrel at 10,400 feet elevation

Lodgepole Squirrel at 10,400 feet in the hole in the Sonora Gap, in the High Sierras.

Lodgepole Squirrel at 10,400 feet elevation in the Sonora Gap. The Sonora Gap sits on the SE ridge Arm of Sonora Peak, and divides the terrain around Sonora Pass from the terrain around Wolf Creek Lake. This is the highest squirrel I've ever seen, and I I've seen some high squirrels.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Backpacking Bear Encounter, Poison Flat, June 2, 2010

Bear Encounter, June 2, 2010.

Backpacking West across the broken snow and muck of Poison Flat (where it is, how to get there) towards the East Carson River, one could not help but notice the tremendous amount of bear tracks in the soft terrain.

Alex Wierbinski's picture

Video: Spring Snow Scouting trip past Carson Pass, June 5, 2010

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 Scouting the Carson Pass prior to backpacking there from the South Upper Truckee Road trail head. This video will give you a view of snow conditions at Carson Pass on June 5, 2010. Late season storms had deposited significant snow the previous week.

The snow line was at 7500 feet on North facing flanks, and 8000 feet on Southern facing flanks. I expect everything but Northwestern faces to be melted off by June 24, at the latest. Continuing high temps may speed this up.

The heavy snow conditions in the High Sierras in early June are depicted by the following videos:

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