[pct-l] south from Tehachapi

Susan Virnig susan at newstories.org
Mon Mar 25 11:46:44 CDT 2019

I’m a section hiker who’s walked nearly 1700 PCT miles, north from Campo to Paradise Valley/Highway 74 and south from Manning Provincial Park to Echo Lakes, and now I’m trying to figure out a way to hike the rest of Section B, plus C, D, E, and maybe F.  Earlier I had been hoping to start this week, but with all the snow, that’s a no-go.  Cassidy from the PCTA suggested one way to do it would be to start at Tehachapi and head south.  Some questions:

1.  Best way to get to Tehachapi — which airport or which Amtrak station or which bus, since I’m coming from Spokane, WA?

2.  How can I find out current snow levels in Section E?  I don’t mind some snow, but don’t want a lot of postholing or the need for crampons and an ice axe, tho I do have micro spikes.   In Section D, Highway 2 is under snow, which means the PCT is under snow.  Does anyone know when it might be open?  (Tried Angeles NF and CalTrans, but couldn’t even get a guess.)  

3.  Does Casa de Luna still exist?  Halfmile’s map lists a website from 2009 and their Facebook page doesn’t have anything on it since June of last year.

4. The High Desert Trail Alternate seems to be a lower alternative to being up on the slopes of Mt. Baden-Powell, from S. Fork Campground to Vincent Gap, but I can’t find going southbound where to leave the PCT to get down to S. Fork or how to get back up to Vincent Gap.  Anybody know?

5. Do I need to worry about bugs, with all this melting snow?

6.  Right now temperatures in Tehachapi and Agua Dulce are ranging from the 30s to the 60s.  In April it will warm up, but will a sun umbrella be worth carrying?

7.  What are all the thru hikers doing with this incredible snow pack, especially those with permits to start in March (Mt. Laguna, San Jacinto, etc.)?

Thanks for any help or advice you can give me,
Sunshine (Susan from Spokane)

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