Trail Conditions

 
A backpacker looks over a vast alpine landscape
Mather Pass

Jessie Wheeler

Here you will find the most recent trail conditions available to us. This information is provided to you by wilderness rangers who are currently in the field and is updated according to their patrols. There are very few of these rangers in the field during the shoulder seasons and none in the winter months. Do not rely on regular updates during this time of year. Also, conditions are continuously changing so please be prepared for inclement weather. Winter storms start early in the High Sierra and can surprise unaware wilderness travelers, so please be prepared. Consider all possibilities before you head out on your trip and check out the Trail Safety page for more information on the potential hazards of wilderness travel.

You can help us by sending an email to report trail conditions. For more information please call the Wilderness Office at (559) 565-3766.

For snowpack data, visit the California Department of Water Resources snow survey website.

 

Cedar Grove and Roads End

The road into Cedar Grove and Roads End is open.

Avalanche Pass

8/7 - Both sides completley washed out, hard to navigate and easy to lose the trail.

7/21 - Snow free, trail clear and logged out.

Lewis Creek and Kennedy Pass

8/7 - Unmaintained trail section - Volcanic Lakes to East Kennedy Lake. Trail is relitively easy to follow along Dead Pine Ridge (look for cut ends). Trail is very difficult to follow along Kennedy Creek - overgrown brush and grasses and lost trail multiple times. Good route finding skills required to complete this loop. Kennedy Pass to Lewis Creek trailhead - overgrown in sections but still easy to follow. Multiple trees down - not stock crossable.

6/6 - The Trail on both sides of Comb Creek is currently being rerouted, stepping stones available to cross. Lewis Creek crossing is approximately 2 ft deep.

Copper Creek and Granite Pass

7/20 - Logged out and stock passable to Simpson Meadow

6/17 - Trail clear of fallen trees and snow from Roads End North to the middle of Granite Basin. North side of Granite Pass is holding a snow field ~50ft in length and there are a few trees down toward State Lakes. North of Shorty's Meadow there are three large snow banks and one large tree down across the trail. Some route finding may be necessary through snow. Stock is not recommended to inexperienced riders at this time. Bugs are out in Granite Basin!

6/2 - Intermittent deep drifts of snow on trail in Granite Basin.

5/24 - Heavy snow beginning at about 9,900ft. The trail is exceedingly difficult to follow after The Lip.

Woods Creek, Bubbs Creek, and Glen Pass (Rae Lakes Loop)

8/7 - Crossings can be found up or down stream from the trail that are fluctuating around 18 inches and calmly moving. To avoid getting your boots wet it is advised to search about 1/4 of a mile down stream to find the log jam that some folks are using to cross.

8/8 - Smoke is light, only a slight haze.

7/31 - The South side of Glen Pass is clear to stock and foot travel except for final switchback at the pass. A failed rock wall on the final switchback makes trail difficult for stock travel. The North side of Glen Pass is clear to stock and foot travel from Woods Creek Crossing to the pass. Some trees are bent over the trail just above saddle height- caution for stock users but these trees are not a problem for hikers.

7/31 - The Bubbs Creek Trail is clear to stock and foot travel from Roads End to Vidette Meadow.

7/24 - On the North side of the pass there has been a recent rock fall that may impede stock travel and may be difficult to traverse for some on foot.

7/12 - Glen Pass is free of snow.

Kings Canyon- West of Sierra Crest

East Lake

7/31 - Clear to stock and foot travel from Bubbs Creek to Inlet of East Lake. East Creek Bridge is missing railings but passable.

7/20 - The Bubbs Creek crossing towards East lake is still not recommended to cross at the trail, it is 3 feet deep, swift and you will need to navigate over some slippery boulders. There are two better crossings: one being ~100 yrds up stream through a braided section and another one about 100yrds downstream where the current is slower moving and fluctuating around 2ft deep (~70ft across).

7/1 - The Bubbs Creek Crossing between Jnct Meadow to East Lake is still running high and swift, crossing is not recommended.

6/30 - Bubbs Creek crossing at East Creek remains swift and deep in places. Crossing about 150 yards down stream of trail (at eastern edge of meadow) was about 36" deep. East Creek trail has a 20" log suspended about 5 feet off the ground just below East Lake. This tree will stop stock travel.

6/20 - Bubbs Creek crossing near Junction Meadow is fluctuating at or above 3.5ft in depth at trail crossing. Seek alternative crossings.

6/1 - Bubbs Creek is running exceedingly swift and cold- fluctuating between 3-5 ft. Crossing is not advised. Expect snow pack above 9,500 ft.


Goddard Canyon

6/20 - Logged out up to McClure.


Middle Fork Kings/ Tehipite

7/31 - It is very brushy from the JMT Junction to 2 miles west. There is a 50' wide washout about 2 miles west of the JMT it is impassable to stock and very difficult for hikers to navigate- from that section of trail, there is a 200' vertical drop to the river. Route finding skills are required and caution is urged.

7/20 - From Simpson Meadow to the Palisade Creek crossing it is logged out but not recommended for stock travel.

7/20 - All trails on the Monarch Divide are logged out and stock passable.

7/15 - Caution is urged in water crossings. The trail through Tehipite Valley is quite overgrown and trail finding is somewhat difficult. Rattlesnakes may be on trail and hard to see, given vegetation.

Grant Grove and Jennie Lakes Wilderness Area

Big Meadows Road is open

JO Pass

Seville, Ranger, and Lost Lakes and Belle Canyon

Redwood Canyon

7/13 - The creeks were still flowing calmly no higher than mid shin-depth. The mosquitoes and wildflowers are out!

6/20 - Snow has melted out completely but the road down is kind of rough. Higher clearance vehicles are recommended

Sugarloaf Valley and Roaring River

Weaver Lake: camp at least 100ft away from lake

Jennie Lake: camp at least 100ft away from lake

Lodgepole, Wolverton, and Crescent Meadow

Twin Lakes Trail

6/20 - The trail over Silliman Pass is clear of snow. The trail between Silliman Pass and Beville Lake is still holding some snow, navigation skills may be required.

Alta Peak Trail

6/27 - Free of snow and trees on trail to summit.

Lakes Trail (Pear Lake)

6/12 - The Watchtower Trail is open.

6/1 - There are patches of snow beginning at Heather Lake and continuing towards Emerald Lake. The Watchtower remains closed due to snow and ice on the trail. Most campsites are free of snow at Emerald.

5/23 - Snow pack begins just after the outlet of Heather Lake and becomes difficult to find the trail after that point. All water crossings are running high with the possibility of melting snow bridges. Traction devices, trekking poles and route finding skills/ tools are highly recommended.

Tablelands

6/28 - There is patchy snow at around 10,600ft elevation

High Sierra Trail

7/30 - Now stock passable between Junction Meadow and JMT.

6/26 - Kaweah Gap is free of snow besides a ~50ft snow field near the top that is easily avoidable. There is minor trail damage at the tunnel that might make it difficult for stock to pass through that area.

6/1 - All creek crossings from the Kern junction up to Crabtree are are at typical mid-season levels.

6/1 - The snow chute between Hamilton and Kaweah Gap is melted out. Snow pack begins 100% coverage below Precipice Lake and continues to the Upper Big Arroyo. Traction devices may be helpful but not required. Route finding skills, a good map and compass are required. Prior knowledge of the trail is preferred.

5/26 - Large washout between Big Arroyo and Chagoopa Plateau. Rocky chute 25-30 ft wide. Conditions described as a Class 2 scramble using hands.

5/24 - Expect snow pack above 9,500 ft. The trail is snow free until just above Hamilton Lake. Technical skills, traction devices and an ice axe will be necessary to get over Kaweah Gap for the foreseeable future. Water crossings will continue to fluctuate according to snowmelt and/or precipitation.

Copper Mine Pass

7/30 - Snow field is melted out enough to mostly avoid it all together.


Colby Pass

8/7 - Junction Meadow to Colby Pass on Sequoia side is very overgrown and hard to follow. Requires route finding skills.

7/31 - The North-West side of the pass has suffered a recent rockslide and is making ~1/2 mile of the pass very difficult to navigate/traverse. Route finding skills and scrambling are required. Caution is urged. May be stock impassable.

7/20 - Snow free on both sides of pass. The Sequoia side has extensive trail damage and a large boulder in the middle of trail. Not recommended for stock travel.

Elizabeth Pass

6/27 - Snow line on the North side of the pass is at ~11,100ft, but tapers off towards the Northwest edge of the pass. Snow can be avoided by going off trail and using route finding skills. The trail on the North side is often obscured by snowmelt.

6/27 - Creek crossings in Deadman are relatively fluctuating between 1-2ft deep wet crossings.

Foothills

Middle Fork Trail

7/31 - There is no water in Redwood Meadow. Visitors are encouraged to refill water at Granite Creek, or at the surrounding water sources, before reaching Redwood meadow.

6/21 Deepest crossing is fluctuating at or below 3ft. Upstream about 100 yrds the crossing is below the knee.

Garfield Grove Trail (South Fork)

Ladybug Trail (South Fork)

Lower Colony Mill Trail (North Fork)

Mineral King and Kern Canyon

The road into Mineral King is now open.

Paradise Ridge Trail

7/20 - Completely snow-free and in good condition.

5/22 - Snow free to ridge and over to Sandy Meadow.

Timber Gap

7/20 - Trail through riverbed area is marked with cairns. Is confusing to some. Navigation tools are strongly recommended.

7/11 - Cliff Creek's bearbox is not functioning.

7/2 - Cliff Creek is fluctuating at ~1ft deep. Trail along Cliff Creek is overgrown but easy to follow. Cliff Creek to Pinto Lake- trail is washed out and difficult to follow through a large riverbed.

6/20 - The blow out on trail about 1 mile in from the MK Trailhead has been repaired and is now stock passable.

6/4 - No snow on either side of the Timber Gap trail. At 12:30pm Cliff Creek was about 2 feet deep at the trail crossing and moving calmly.

6/1 - The trail has suffered extensive damage from a rock fall about a mile out from the trailhead. Off trail navigation is required to bypass a steep 20 foot long section of missing trail. Extreme caution is urged. Not stock passable. Expect snow pack above 9,500 ft.

Tar Gap

7/11 - Mostly clear and passable. Very overgrown in parts. 4 downed trees.

6/1 - Lots of downed trees but clear of snow. Crossings are below knee level but caution should still be exercised.

Black Rock Pass

7/2 - There is a large ravine-like washout on the Westside switchbacks roughly 2 miles west of the pass, ~20-30 feet of trail has been removed. Visitors will need to climb down into the 'ravine' and make their way back up to meet trail. Loose rocks and dirt, steep ravine sides, use caution. Route finding will be necessary. It is not considered stock passable at this time.

6/1 - The last mile has 20% snow coverage on the East side of pass. Route finding will be necessary. No snow on the west side of Black Rock Pass. Massive blowout on trail- not stock passable. Between the top of Black Rock Pass and Little Five Lakes- about 70% of the trail is free of snow. Snow was soft and I was post holing at 8:00a.m. all the way to the top of the pass. Good navigation skills are required

Glacier Pass

7/26 - North side: snowfield ~100 feet below pass is approx 200' wide. This snow patch is at a 45-degree angle, soft and supportive at 1130, crampons are advised.

7/7 - North side of pass: ~250-ft wide x 60-ft tall snow field. No cornice. Snow at mid-day was soft and supportive. Snow near rocks is rotten. 45-degree angle near top of pass is snow-covered and could be dangerous if icy. South side of pass is free of snow.

6/6 - The North side of Glacier pass has 95% snow coverage to Spring Lake. Ice Axe and traction devices are recommended.


Sawtooth Pass

6/28 - No snow on pass. Misleading cairns from Columbine Lake to pass have been removed, route should now be easier to follow.

6/28 - Columbine Lake to Sawtooth Pass: One large (25yard) patch of snow covering trail. Easily avoidable. Cornice at Sawtooth Pass is minimal and easily passable

6/17 - Snow free on West side of pass, East side is approximately 50% snow covered to Columbine Lake. Both visitors and employees have reported misleading cairns on the east side of the pass. Navigation & mountaineering skill is recommended.

6/4 - Several sections of a few hundred feet of snow still exist on the trail to Monarch Lake. No snow present on the "old trail" to the lake.

5/28 - Large patches of snow after Crystal Lake/Monarch Lake jnct towards Monarch Lake. Ice axe and crampons advised. Almost 100% snow around lower Monarch Lake, snow is 2-3 feet deep in areas. Snow over small streams was firm enough at 1300 to walk over without issue.

Farewell Gap

6/30 - Free of snow.

5/30 - Creek crossings are shin-deep and swift. Snowline is at about 10,250ft. Trail disappears beneath snow ~1/2 mile before Farewell Gap. Deep snow for the last 100 yd before Gap- crampons/ice axe recommended. Snow was mostly firm enough to walk upon at 1230, some postholing up to 2 ft deep. No snow at Farewell Gap, minimal snow on the Forest Service side of the Gap.

5/23 - Snow pack is at 9,300 ft. Lower Franklin Creek is fluctuating between 2 1/2 ft -3 ft deep- it is swift and very cold. Route finding is required past the junction for Franklin and Farewell Gap trails due to vast snow fields.

Franklin Lakes and Franklin Pass

7/8 - Franklin Pass is snow-free.

6/18 - There is a large snow cornice on Franklin Pass and is not considered stock passable.

6/14 - Lower Franklin Creek is fluctuating around 2ft in depth with cold, swift water. Upper Franklin Creek is fluctuating at or above 2ft within the meadow. The main trail crossing is fluctuating at or above 3ft and swift. Lower Franklin lake is completely free of snow/ice. Upper Franklin Lake is about 25% covered in isolated segments of ice. Trail is snow-free all the way to Franklin Pass. A 10-12 ft snow cornice on East side of pass persists. Large snow patch on east side of pass. Route finding may be necessary.

5/27 - Both creek crossings up to the pass are swift in areas. Snowline is at about 10,000ft. The snow is patchy, mainly in drainages. Trekking poles are advised. The lake is partially frozen.

5/23 - Snow pack is at 9,300 ft. Lower Franklin Creek is fluctuating between 2 1/2 ft -3 ft deep- it is swift and very cold. Route finding is required past the junction for Franklin and Farewell Gap trails due to vast snow fields. Franklin Lake is mostly free of ice.

White Chief, Eagle Lake, and Mosquito Lakes

5/27 - Trail free of snow. Some fallen trees over trail but still passable. Muddy around lakes #1 and #2

5/27 - Patches of snow and trail confusing to navigate last 1/4-mile before Eagle Lake.

5/24 - Expect snow pack above 9,500 ft.

Atwell/Hockett Trail

8/8 - Hockett Plateau clear of smoke. Mosquito activivty has dimished greatly.

6/1 - Trail is clear of snow. Horse Creek Crossing is fluctuating around 2 feet deep. Mosquitos are out.

4/30 - Large sections of snow patches from the Tar Gap junction to the Hockett Ranger Station. Horse Creek was running above the knee and very cold and swift.

Sierra Crest and East Side (Inyo National Forest)

For more information on trails starting on the east side of the Sierra Nevada, contact the Inyo National Forest Wilderness Office at (760) 873-2483.

Bishop Pass

7/31 - The East side of pass is currently under reconstruction - this may cause delays for stock travel temporary while walls are built. The trail is clear to stock and foot travel from LeConte to Bishop Pass.

7/25 - Stock passable.

7/10 - Small snowfield remaining on the top part of the trail. Stock may be able to pass at this point. Switchbacks are snow free. Be advised that the trail may have large loose boulders as a result of the current trail work going on. Dead, putrefying deer remain on the east side of Bishop Pass.

6/21 - Dusy Basin is free of snow. On the Inyo side of Bishop Pass, there is a large snowfield on low angle terrain ~100 ft in length near top of the pass. There are lingering snow patches on the switchbacks that render the trail stock impassable.

Mather Pass

7/31 - Clear to stock and foot travel from South Fork Crossing to Mather Pass. There are four failed walls on the final switchbacks that leave the trail mildly narrowed for stock. Clear to stock and foot travel from Palisades Creek Crossing to Mather Pass.

7/18 - Snow free on both sides of the pass. Stock Passable.

6/20 - South side of pass is snow free. The North side has large patches of snow on trail. Route finding and scrambling is required and trekking poles are advised. Not stock passable.

6/1 - Extensive/deep snow coverage on the North side of Mather pass to lower palisade lake.

Upper Basin

6/27 - Expect snow pack above 10,500 ft on North facing slopes.

Piute Pass

6/27 - Expect snow pack above 10,500 ft on North facing slopes.

Muir Pass

8/8 - South Side of the Pass very washed out. Stock not recommmended.

7/25- Trail is stock passable. Large boulder north of Evolution Lake is clear.

7/9 - Snow free. The south side of Muir Pass has extensive social trails braiding the switchbacks above Helen Lake. Many parts of the trail between Helen Lake and the frog pond are currently flooded from snowmelt above the trail. The flooding has also caused some social trails in the area.

7/2 - The North facing slope is snow free. The South facing slope is still holding several patches of snow that may be easily avoided. Evolution Creek is fluctuating at or around 2ft in depth.

6/25 - The pass is 40-60% snow covered. No tractions devices are required. Snow patches and snow bridges are avoidable but some off trail navigation is required. Visitors are not advised to cross over snow bridges. Stock passable from LeConte to the top of the pass.

6/22 - Snow persists on North Side of pass down to Lake McDermand. There is a large boulder on trail North of Evolution Lake.

Lamarck Col

7/8 - Last 300 vertical feet to the pass from the East side are still snow covered. No special equipment needed. Be cautious of large loose boulders on the trail.

6/25 - NPS side is free of snow. On the Inyo NF side there are several small patches of snow obscuring the upper pass. There is a 100 yrd high angle snow field traverse. Traction devices are required.


Pinchot Pass

7/31 - Clear to stock and foot travel from Woods Creek Crossing to Pinchot Pass. Clear to stock and foot travel from South Fork Crossing to Pinchot Pass.

7/2 - Free of snow on top of pass. There is a 100ft wide snow field on trail about 1.5 miles down from the top of the pass on the North facing slope.


Taboose Pass

7/18 - Snow free on both sides of the pass. Stock Passable.

6/20 - The East side of pass has 3 large snow fields ~50ft in length, 1-2 ft deep and on flat terrain. It may be difficult for stock travel but not difficult for hikers to traverse. The West Side is free of snow.

6/20 - The South Fork of the Kings River North of the Bench Lake junction on the PCT/JMT is less than 1ft deep.

Sawmill Pass

6/27 - Expect snow pack above 10,500 ft on North facing slopes.

Baxter Pass

6/27 - Expect snow pack above 10,500 ft on North facing slopes.

Kearsarge Pass

7/1 - Kearsarge Lake and Charlotte Lake are free of snow. The Bubbs Creek Crossing between Jnct Meadow to East Lake is still running high and swift, crossing is not recommended.

6/14 - Trail is free of snow.

6/1 - Basically free of snow with the exception of a few small patches that can be navigated through with trekking poles and boots.

Forester Pass

7/25 - Snow free. Not advisable for stock travel.

7/18 - Basically free of snow. Large boulder on the South side of pass located on the lower switchbacks.

6/28 - South side of pass is free of snow. North side of pass has 2 large sections of snow. Those patches of snow do not require traction devices at this time.

Shepherd Pass

7/25 - Snow free on the Forest Service side. Not advisable for stock travel.

7/8 - Snow field on top east side of pass. Trail crosses steep snow for approximately 75ft. Traction devices and ice axe are recommended. Not stock-passable.

6/27 - There is a large snow field near the top of the East side of the pass. Ice axe and traction devices required.

Mount Whitney Trail

7/11 - The trail from Trail Camp to the summit is completely free of snow, there is water running down the trail for the first half mile of the 99 switchbacks.

7/16 - On the mountaineers Route: The snow between Iceberg Lake and summit can be avoided depending on the time of day. Early morning or if temps drop, ice may impede travel.

6/27 - Trail is clear of snow on both sides of Trail Crest and up to Whitney. The section of trail where there are cables installed between Trail Camp and Trail Crest narrows and has running water on trail that can freeze and become very slippery in early morning and/or colder conditions. Trekking poles and caution is advised.

6/27 - Whitney Mountaineers Route- Ice Axe and Crampons are required.

6/18 - West Side: The trail is snow free to the summit with a few patches of snow that are avoidable. East Side: mostly free of snow up to the switchbacks above the trail. There are several patches of snow that are hazardous between Trail Camp to Trail Crest, especially the section with the cables- Ice Axe/Crampons recommended

5/30 - On the East side there is 100% snow coverage from Trail Camp to Trail Crest. Ice axe/crampons are advised. Most opting for snowfield vs trail. Cables are up. The trail below Trail Camp is mostly snow free. On West side, switchbacks are about 80% snow free. Trail Crest to summit has about 60% snow coverage. Steep exposed icy sections. Ice axe and tractions devices are advised.

Army Pass

7/26 - Snow free but has suffered extensive damage from rockslide on steep slopes with high risk consequences. Experience with route finding and cross-country travel is required.

6/28 - Extremely steep 50 ft snowfield. Crampons and Ice Axe are required. There has been a significant amount of rock fall near the bottom of the pass- route finding is necessary.

6/12 - Not recommended except for experienced mountaineers with technical gear.

New Army Pass

7/26 - Snow free on both sides of the pass.

6/28 - NPS side free of snow.

6/28 - Langley is snow free along the carined route to summit.

6/1 - There is a 100ft vertical wall of ice and snow at the top of New Army Pass. Ice Axe and Crampons are required. It is basically snow free from Cottonwood Lakes.

Cottonwood Pass

6/1 - From the PCT/JMT north to Wright Creek the trail is free of snow and stock passable. All creek crossings are unremarkable. On Tyndall Creek there is a safer crossing 1/4 mile upstream in the meadow where braided.

Kern Canyon

6/18 - There is a fallen log by the Kern Ranger station that may impede stock travel. Stock parties can take the bridge, through Inyo, to bypass.
6/1 - All stream crossings including Rattlesnake Creek are running at mid-season levels. Rattlesnake is below the knee, not too swift. At least 10 trees are down over the trail.

Rock Creek

6/28 - All Rock Creek crossings along the PCT are unremarkable. There is no water available along PCT between Chicken Springs Lake and Rock Creek.

6/28 - There is a better crossing ~150' upstream due to former flooding.

 
New Army Pass
New Army Pass

Photo by N. Ver

 

Last updated: August 18, 2018

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Three Rivers, CA 93271

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