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  1. #11
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    That late in season? Don't count on being able to backpack. Skip the PCT - the sections that are most worth doing will be under snow. I start backpacking on the coast in late October and come back to the Sierra in May-June as the snow melts. Unless we are wanting to go out in snow.

    First time in California I would be a sightseer, not a backpacker. Go to the sequoias or the redwoods (two different trees, same species, different locations) depending on weather. Go see Yosemite valley. Go to Point Reyes. Go to San Francisco.

    Not too many people ski????

    We backcountry ski, cross country, telemark, downhill, snowshoe, etc. - there are resorts in the national parks and over every high pass. People are up there skiing today, in fact. Snow is still falling. Tahoe is a winter sport paradise. Yosemite's Badger Pass grooms some of the roads for cross country skiers.

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by lori View Post
    First time in California I would be a sightseer, not a backpacker. Go to the sequoias or the redwoods (two different trees, same species, different locations) depending on weather. Go see Yosemite valley. Go to Point Reyes. Go to San Francisco.
    First time in America even, but even in an unimaginable huge country I'll have to start somewhere. Seeing it all would require several lifetimes. Backpacking is nature sightseeing. To my eyes; cities are the same everywhere. At least modern ones. If I'm to travel that far I want to see more than just another statue, hamburger joint or coffee shop or stand in line all day in a theme park

    Quote Originally Posted by lori View Post
    That late in season? Don't count on being able to backpack. Skip the PCT - the sections that are most worth doing will be under snow. I start backpacking on the coast in late October and come back to the Sierra in May-June as the snow melts. Unless we are wanting to go out in snow.
    Not too many people ski????
    We backcountry ski, cross country, telemark, downhill, snowshoe, etc. - there are resorts in the national parks and over every high pass. People are up there skiing today, in fact. Snow is still falling. Tahoe is a winter sport paradise. Yosemite's Badger Pass grooms some of the roads for cross country skiers.
    If you ski that much, why would a snow-covered trail be a problem?
    I was under the impression that snow shoes were used more often than cross country skis for trips/hiking on snow over there and thus ski tracks would be few and far between. In this case I would like nothing more than being dead wrong! Hehe. I'm used to making my own ski tracks as well so snow is not a problem, it just kills the pace and thus limits your range. In between seasons though, when everything is just wet, THAT is no fun

    I guess I have to dig up some seasonal weather reports for all your great suggestions. Thanks!

    -Frikk
    Last edited by Frikk; 05-09-2011 at 11:54.

  3. #13
    Senior Member Greg Dunlap's Avatar
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    Frikk

    If your into paddling then the Bay Area can more than accommidate you. You can get information about where to go matching your skill level from California Canoe and Kayak including a boat rental if needed. Also check out the BASK website for paddling places. Just click on "Trip Planner" at the top of their menu.

    As far as hiking, your 3 hours from Tahoe with all the Sierra wilderness you can handle. When your time here gets closer put out the word again and I'm sure you will get offers to hike with you.
    Greg Dunlap
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  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frikk View Post
    First time in America even, but even in an unimaginable huge country I'll have to start somewhere. Seeing it all would require several lifetimes. Backpacking is nature sightseeing. To my eyes; cities are the same everywhere. At least modern ones. If I'm to travel that far I want to see more than just another statue, hamburger joint or coffee shop or stand in line all day in a theme park


    If you ski that much, why would a snow-covered trail be a problem?
    I was under the impression that snow shoes were used more often than cross country skis for trips/hiking on snow over there and thus ski tracks would be few and far between. In this case I would like nothing more than being dead wrong! Hehe. I'm used to making my own ski tracks as well so snow is not a problem, it just kills the pace and thus limits your range. In between seasons though, when everything is just wet, THAT is no fun

    I guess I have to dig up some seasonal weather reports for all your great suggestions. Thanks!

    -Frikk
    GO TO YOSEMITE! The parts of the PCT that are accessible are unremarkable. Yosemite is accessible year round and you are guaranteed to see scenery that is classic Sierra Nevada. You will be able to backpack there, no problem. And there are no trailhead quotas - you need to be prepared for winter conditions and aware of how to survive winter storms, but you'll not be fighting quotas for wilderness permits. In winter it's self registration.

    I don't think you understand that winter closes many, many roads. Right now, I am waiting for roads to open, to access parts of the Sierra that are not national parks. Unless roads open, access to trailheads can mean a few days walk before you even get on trail.

    I don't ski. I backpack. Other people ski - most people I know are skiers. It's one of the great things about California. We can drive a couple hours to ski.

    I am only a winter camper for search and rescue, and given we do not choose our terrain we take snowshoes.

  5. #15
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    Thanks for great advise!

    I've started to read and learn about US property laws and what is and isn't allowed to do as a hiker so I won't make a fool out of myself or step on any toes. So far I am pleasantly surprised.

    So many possibilities. Good thing I have a lot of time before fall to plan and dream. I may have to look into taking more time off from work and extend my stay

    Here in familiar surroundings I can hike comfortably on a budget of $15-$20 per day. That's not counting gear expenses obviously, only the most basic of food. I hope a similar budget is doable over there as well, or am I far off target here?

    -Frikk

  6. #16
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    Watched http://www.wizardsofthepct.com this weekend. I think I need to just go ahead and order those airline tickets soon

    -Frikk

  7. #17
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    I agree, don't expect to be able to get far in the Sierras. For example, Squaw Valley, as of May 1st, has gotten over 700" (17.7m+) of snow this season.

    One additional warning re: Yosemite. While I love it there in the winter - no crowds! - a couple of impressive trails close. And you needs chains. From Berkeley, about 1000 places sell chains though.

    I know this is contrary to everyone else's opinion - and seeing this is a camping forum - You could easily spend a week or two in the bay no problem. Marin county has some nice hikes, as do the hills above Berkeley. Great biking up there too. Once you get past that second week though...

    The redwoods are amazing too.

    October (and September) are probably the best time of the year to visit the bay and the north coast, weather wise. Every other time of the year, it's basically cold and raining. When I moved here, it took me 4 trips to the ocean from here 2 hours inland before I didn't get rained on.

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