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Postholing Pimkolam
36 images in this album on 4 pages.
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My original plan for today was to attempt the traverse from Junipero Serra over to Bear Mountain and Pinyon peak. I tempered these goals when I found several feet of snow on the peak and ended up just doing the morning ascent of the Monterey county highpoint.

I left the Mountain View around 3am and headed south towards the Hunter Ligget base, arriving there a bit after 5am. The creek crossings were closed and I had to take the long Milpitas road detour to get to the Memorial Park campground. Noone was around at the campground or the trailhead when I arrived.

It was 35 degrees and pitch black when I left the trailhead via headlamp. There was should have been a quarter moon around someplace, but it wasn't visible from the valley. The early parts of the trail were rain saturated and very muddy. There were a half dozen creeks active that would be bone dry later in the season.

I had a bit of a scare about a mile up the trail. I heard a rustling next to me and looked over to see that I had almost stepped on a skunk. It looked up at me and then (luckily) scampered away.

The trail dried out considerably once it left the valley floor and I made it to the saddle by 8am...

(Prior trips to Junipero Serra can be found here and here)

TL
The trail junction at the Junipero Serra saddle.  Made it up here just as the sun was cresting the ridge.  Just patches of snow at this point.
BB
The trail junction at the Junipero Serra saddle. Made it up here just as the sun was cresting the ridge. Just patches of snow at this point.
Viewed: 227 times.
01/16/2005 07:47 AM
TL
The snow started a short distance past the saddle.  The lower elevations had just a couple of inches, but the snow got deeper as I climbed.
BB
The snow started a short distance past the saddle. The lower elevations had just a couple of inches, but the snow got deeper as I climbed.
Viewed: 176 times.
01/16/2005 08:24 AM
TL
The lookout tower came into view on the peak before the trail looped around to the back side of the mountain.  Bits of snow on the slope.
BB
The lookout tower came into view on the peak before the trail looped around to the back side of the mountain. Bits of snow on the slope.
Viewed: 166 times.
01/16/2005 08:28 AM
TL
Into the pines and the heavy snow on the back side of the peak.  I was breaking trail and routefinding was a bit difficult in places (would have been much worse if I hadn't been familiar with this section of trail).  Much of the snow was resting on top of branches/underbrush.
BB
Into the pines and the heavy snow on the back side of the peak. I was breaking trail and routefinding was a bit difficult in places (would have been much worse if I hadn't been familiar with this section of trail). Much of the snow was resting on top of branches/underbrush.
Viewed: 119 times.
TL
Looking up at the (backlit, ugh) back side of Junipero Serra.  Solid snow cover on this side.
BB
Looking up at the (backlit, ugh) back side of Junipero Serra. Solid snow cover on this side.
Viewed: 127 times.
01/16/2005 09:04 AM
TL
Don't remember seeing this "water" sign before.  If there was any water today, it would have been buried deep beneath the snow.
BB
Don't remember seeing this "water" sign before. If there was any water today, it would have been buried deep beneath the snow.
Viewed: 182 times.
01/16/2005 09:07 AM
TL
Looking north from the trail.  Junipero Serra and the few nearby minor peaks seem to have gotten the bulk of the precipitation- everything else was snow free.
BB
Looking north from the trail. Junipero Serra and the few nearby minor peaks seem to have gotten the bulk of the precipitation- everything else was snow free.
Viewed: 193 times.
01/16/2005 09:32 AM
TL
Over a foot of snow here, but the snow surface was still (mostly) supporting my weight.
BB
Over a foot of snow here, but the snow surface was still (mostly) supporting my weight.
Viewed: 175 times.
01/16/2005 09:36 AM
TL
One of the many many newly down trees and branches toppled by the recent storms.
BB
One of the many many newly down trees and branches toppled by the recent storms.
Viewed: 156 times.
01/16/2005 09:37 AM
   
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