Snow condition update Deer Springs trail

General Palm Springs area.

Snow condition update Deer Springs trail

Postby pkirkham » Sat Jan 28, 2017 7:51 pm

Hi all, just a quick note on the snow conditions on the 'east side' of San Jac. Tried to get to the summit today on a solo snowshoe up Deer Springs trail. Snowshoes required from Hwy 243! Trail-breaking from the turn-off to Suicide deeper with route-finding problems the higher I went. Met a German guy at the junction of Marion Mtn. trail and the PCT. He turned around there, I probably should have done the same LOL! I pushed on up and eventually turned around after about 5 hrs of uphill shoeing. Last year did the same hike and made the peak in 6 hrs. not this year! The snow is deeper this year making travel and route finding a bigger challenge....didn't even make it to Little Round valley? I don't get scared very easily but one thing that I encountered today that I have never really worried about before...falling chunks of rime ice. As the day warmed, HUGE chunks of ice were constantly falling from the trees as the sun made it's way around the mtn. When I say huge, I'm not exaggerating folks. I've dealt with this stuff before but not the stuff that was falling today, I should have taken my climbing helmet, no joke! Most of it should have fallen by the end of today.....
Here's my Strava link:
Interestingly, met two young guys on the way back down. They where headed-up and planning on camping at Strawberry junction and hitting the peak tomorrow...ha, ha, they didn't have any snowshoes and other day-hikers were post-holing 2- 3 feet in places. I informed them of the conditions higher up and wished them luck...the one advantage they had over moi, they are about 23 years old LOL!!
Have fun out there folks and stay safe!
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Re: Snow condition update Deer Springs trail

Postby Norris » Sat Jan 28, 2017 9:41 pm

Thanks for the update! The huge balls of rime ice in the pines can be deadly. It has been some years since we last had this! Will definitely wear a helmet tomorrow!
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Re: Snow condition update Deer Springs trail

Postby Sally » Sat Jan 28, 2017 10:29 pm

Thanks for the TR! I was curious how that side of the mountain was.
As I stated in Ellen's Baldy Rescue report, the only really dumb thing we did was to leave our helmets in the trunk, for 2 reasons:
1) getting smacked on the noggin with a watermelon-sized chunk of ice can kill, and
2) so can sliding down a hill and hitting a tree head first.

Have fun, enjoy the beauty of what we have up there, but be careful, friends!
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