Jun 30, 2009 at 1:34 pm #1237448
My brother and I are heading out on the SHR next week…one problem, however: we've got no maps! We miscalulated that we'd be able to order them from Andrew Skurka, but he's currently in Alaska and unable to fill orders. We have the Roper book, but that's inadequate. Does anyone one on here have the map set that they'd be willing to sell? We'd pay you the full price, and work out some way of compensating him for his intellectual property, etc. Thanks in advance!Jun 30, 2009 at 2:07 pm #1511380
@foundLocale: Sacramento, CA
The Roper book isn't inadequate. Why do you think so?Jun 30, 2009 at 2:22 pm #1511385
@chrismorganLocale: Southern Oregon
These may be of limited to moderate help:Jun 30, 2009 at 2:31 pm #1511387Jun 30, 2009 at 5:07 pm #1511399
@kennyhel77Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Well if you had the National Geographic maps you could customize your maps for the trips. Considering that you are going to be off trail for most of the hike, I sure hope that you are bringing maps…….Jun 30, 2009 at 5:50 pm #1511413
Now with maps ready to purchase I say go now before it gets anymore ruined. People who wouldn't go unless they had a map (barrier to entry)that spells it all out for them shouldn't be back there.Jul 1, 2009 at 10:05 am #1511509
@swimjayLocale: Northern California
Hi Benjamin–we talked on the phone the other night, and I just wanted to correct some possible misinformation I might have given you. There IS a potentially difficult river crossing, depending on snow melt, somewhere north of Blue Lake Pass. On Andrew's web site, an account by a woman who did the entire route with two others–you'll recognize the account by its amazing photos–tells how they were turned off route and had to go over Red Peak Pass by a river they couldn't cross. This is all from memory, so read her account.
When I did the route, in August, the river crossing she's referring to was a piece of cake, at 6 in the evening.Jul 1, 2009 at 9:25 pm #1511640
There are two significant crossings in this area of the SHR: the outlet of Twin Island Lake, and the Lyell Fork of the Merced River, which sounds like the crossing above.
Lyell Fork can be bypassed by taking the trail in the opposite direction (south), toward Isberg Pass, then following the trail down the Merced River to the junction near Merced Lake (all significant crossings are bridged), where the Lewis Creek trail can be taken back to the SHR. (The Roper book has information on bypassing the Twin Island Lake outlet crossing.)Jul 2, 2009 at 8:59 am #1511700Jul 3, 2009 at 10:14 am #1511896
@wunderLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
The SHR mostly parallels the JMT, so some sets of JMT maps might work.
You don't say where you live, but the USGS has a store in Menlo Park, CA with all the topo maps for the western region. It is open 8-4 weekdays.
Or you can go to http://store.usgs.gov/ and have them FedEx the maps.Jul 4, 2009 at 1:35 am #1511997
@rezniemLocale: San Francisco
How does one determine if a river crossing in the Sierra is bridged or not? Seems like good info the trail-maps should have….Jul 4, 2009 at 8:44 am #1512012
@kennyhel77Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Pretty much you asume that they are not bridgedJul 4, 2009 at 1:56 pm #1512052
@foundLocale: Sacramento, CA
One way, if a google search reveals no mention or picture of a bridge, there likely isn't a bridge.Jul 5, 2009 at 3:35 pm #1512176
The USGS 7.5 minute topos generally will indicate backcountry bridges with a "footbridge" notation and symbol. It does seem that only substantial bridges, and not those "bridges" that consist of a permanent log or two with a flattened side, get this treatment. Unfortunately, many of the non-government maps (Trails Illustrated, Tom Harrison) do not indicate the location of bridges. On the other hand, it's not unusual for bridges to wash out in the Sierra in high runoff seasons, and not all that wash out are eventually repaired/replaced.Jul 6, 2009 at 1:55 pm #1512308
@klaseklofLocale: Northern California
I totally agree with Dave T. I got topo maps, sat in my arm chair at home, read roper, and traced the route onto the maps. I don't consider this an entry barrier, just smart preperation. And it easily saved me many hours on the route.
I don't consider any of the route-finding difficult. It's true: I didn't locate the proper place to leave the trail for the climb to Merriam Lake, and I walked up the trail-less forest, not knowing exactly where I was, but knowing that I would get to where I needed to be. Don't expect to be perfectly on-route every step, but often you can see the route for miles ahead…
I used Tom Harrison Maps,
– Kings High Country
– Mono High Country
– Mammoth High Country
– Yosemite High Country
But, I think the topos in roper's book would, in fact, be plenty adequate.
Have a safe and wonderful journey, and we'd love to see a report when you return.
– KlasJul 16, 2009 at 12:06 pm #1514318
Apologies for the distress I may have caused by not fulfilling orders over the last month. I'm based out of MT this summer (where all the BPL school courses are being run out of) and unfortunately I don't have any friends in town who owe me favors like I have in CO, which is how I managed to still fulfill orders back in Feb & March while I was on the Hayduke and Grand Canyon Traverse for a month.
I finished my big AK trip yesterday (lots of epic stories but I'll save those for another post or trip report) and am shipping mapsets again for anyone who wants one. I've updated the shipping dates on my website too to reflect some changes in my schedule.
I was interested in reading the comments on the implications of my mapset being available. I agree with those who have some concerns about what the lack of a "barrier to entry" will do to the SHR — it's not going to become the JMT anytime soon, but I think there defintely will be an increase in traffic on the route. I'd be interested in hearing whether that ends up being the case from those who are out there this summer — let me know. I suppose the question for me in making the mapset available was, "What is the societal cost of making the mapset available versus the societal benefit?" And I concluded that overall it's a net gain for the hiking community — the SHR goes through some awesome country and I'd like more people to see it, in the hopes they value it more, and are more willing to fight for the protection of those areas and areas like it. The SHR is through a well protected corridor but there are still many environmental issues that affect it (e.g., climate change) and other areas connected to this corridor. Moreover, given the declining level of backcountry engagement (i.e. more people day-hike now, but far fewer backpack), I am hoping the mapset is able to reverse some of this unfortunate trend.
The other sentiment I heard was the "I call it doing your homework" feeling. I agree with this one too — I personally thoroughly enjoy this aspect of trip planning and believe that it makes a trip ultimately more rewarding. But, again, this time commitment is essentially a tax on usage, and I'm hoping the mapset reduces it. If someone still wants to prep for the SHR "the old-fashioned way," they certainly don't need the mapset…but, I'd offer the suggestion of getting the mapset, doing the SHR, and then spending the time you would have spent on SHR prep on prepping for a route that has no guidebook or mapset!
AndrewJul 17, 2009 at 12:52 pm #1514596
@williamlawLocale: SF Bay Area
While there's some truth to the theory that "the more they experience it the more they'll want to protect it" my belief is that holds more in the large than when applied to this specific route. I doubt anyone is going to hike this route without already possessing a considerable desire to want to protect these wilderness areas.
My impression after reading
Roper's book (and spending considerable time in the Sierra, both on and off trail) is that an important part of the "essence" of this route is the fact that it *is* somewhat vague. I think Roper says so himself, more or less.
A set of maps pointing out detailed routes is likely going to increase the number and reduce the faintness of use trails through the areas and that's counter to the spirit of the SHR, in my opinion.
Not that it will have a material effect. I'm more worried about the experience of those using the maps. Ironically, by relying on the maps they may not be hiking the Sierra High Route after all.
BillJul 17, 2009 at 7:11 pm #1514700
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