2020 Snow Level

General discussions on hiking in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest
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mountainkat
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Re: 2020 Snow Level

Post by mountainkat » May 30th, 2020, 8:20 pm

Easy day, just walked the road from the gate, took the main trail down to the old road that goes back to the hairpin turn in the road. No snow except for a very small patch on the road just before the parking lot.
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drm
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Re: 2020 Snow Level

Post by drm » June 3rd, 2020, 6:51 pm

Still quite a bit of snow on the ridge between Herman Ck and Wahtum Lake. Though there was a pretty good boot track in the snow today, that is unreliable. You need to be able to navigate this wide flat ridge if you're going this way. Last year, somebody made a wrong turn, went down the west fork of Herman Creek, and search and rescue took three days to find him.

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Chip Down
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Re: 2020 Snow Level

Post by Chip Down » June 3rd, 2020, 9:35 pm

Silver Star is completely bare, as seen from Starway/Bluff/Baldy. Maybe some snow on the Grouse route, but I can't imagine it could amount to much.
drm wrote:
June 3rd, 2020, 6:51 pm
Still quite a bit of snow on the ridge between Herman Ck and Wahtum Lake. Though there was a pretty good boot track in the snow today, that is unreliable. You need to be able to navigate this wide flat ridge if you're going this way. Last year, somebody made a wrong turn, went down the west fork of Herman Creek, and search and rescue took three days to find him.
I had a lot of fun on a couple trips trying to follow trails around there in the snow a winter or two back. Good times. Reminds me, I want to get to Tomlike this year (never been). I'll probably drive up to the lake though, because old/lazy.

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Chip Down
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Re: 2020 Snow Level

Post by Chip Down » June 5th, 2020, 6:53 pm

Three opinions today on PCT between Cascade Locks and Lolo Pass:

Scary, don't do it.
A little sketchy, not ideal.
Unpleasant, but not particularly risky for experienced snow travelers with poles and/or spikes.

I really think another week will clear out the worst of it.

jeannette
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Re: 2020 Snow Level

Post by jeannette » June 6th, 2020, 6:18 am

My plan is to start the Oregon PCT on June 23rd in Ashland, heading north how much snow should I anticipate encountering?

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drm
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Re: 2020 Snow Level

Post by drm » June 6th, 2020, 7:03 am

Oregon snowpack is well below average for this point. But you should still expect higher altitude areas that are sheltered or north facing to have snow or late season icy sections, even by late June. So while you are not too likely to get miles and miles of deep snow in the forested flatlands, that remaining snow is likely to be on steep slopes and can be very slippery, especially early in the day. Good idea to have traction devices for your shoes.

And where the snow is gone, it will be replaced by mosquitoes. So be ready for them too.

Also note that the pcta.org site has removed it's conditions page in order to discourage long distance hiking. My guess is that will get back up some time this month, and that will be your best source of information on PCT conditions.

cosmic_kumquat
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Re: 2020 Snow Level

Post by cosmic_kumquat » June 6th, 2020, 10:05 am

Chip Down wrote:
June 3rd, 2020, 9:35 pm
Silver Star is completely bare, as seen from Starway/Bluff/Baldy. Maybe some snow on the Grouse route, but I can't imagine it could amount to much.
I was just up at silver star via grouse vista yesterday. There's no snow you need to hike through on the Grouse route, just a patch or two off to the side. No snow at the top of silver star either. I did the silver star/ed's trail loop as well. There was one little patch of snow on silver star #180 but it was only a dozen steps. Ed's trail had a tiny bit of snow off to the side. There was one part of Ed's trail that was muddy where the rock scramble is so I wouldn't recommend going down it but going up was easy enough.
Last edited by cosmic_kumquat on June 6th, 2020, 10:12 am, edited 1 time in total.

cosmic_kumquat
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Re: 2020 Snow Level

Post by cosmic_kumquat » June 6th, 2020, 10:11 am

I hiked Bald Mountain from Lolo Pass Rd on 5/29, the rhododendron's are just getting buds on them, no flower yet. There was snow off to the side of the trail towards 3/4 mile up. At 1 mile there was snow covering the trail for somewhere between 1/4-1/2 mile, with little patches of trail in between, enough to realize you were still on trail & manageable in hiking boots. Snow ended shortly after you switchback up to head towards Mt. Hood.

Webfoot
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Re: 2020 Snow Level

Post by Webfoot » June 6th, 2020, 10:45 am

cosmic_kumquat, thanks for the reports and welcome to the site!

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Chip Down
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Re: 2020 Snow Level

Post by Chip Down » June 13th, 2020, 7:31 pm

NOAA forecast for 3260' on St Helens (Coldwater), Junuary 13-17:
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