SoCal Winter
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Jona Schuman
(jonaschuman) - F

Locale: Adirondacks
SoCal Winter on 01/05/2010 16:58:01 MST Print View

I'm visiting LA at the end of January, and would like to get some hiking in. Having never hiked outside of the Northeast, I'm looking for advice on what gear to bring and any suggestions on where to hike (anything from day-hikes to a week-long backpacking trip).

In particular:

1) Are any of the (lower) mountains hike-able without snowshoes and full crampons?

2) How cold is it? Do I need to bring my winter sleeping bag?

3) Is a bear canister required/recommended anywhere? (Do bears hibernate in socal winter weather?)


Thanks!

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
SoCal on 01/05/2010 17:08:04 MST Print View

It's not cold at lower elevations unless we're getting an arctic storm, so snow isn't an issue. There's snow at higher elevations. I'm not sure about the bears, but I doubt you need anything extra, especially since you can take the PCT thru that area without a bear canister. Anyway, you may want to check out the following forum. It's pretty active, and you'll probably want to head out there.
http://www.mtsanjacinto.info/

Jim W.
(jimqpublic) - MLife

Locale: So-Cal
SoCal Winter- plan for 0F blizzards and 85F at the beach on 01/05/2010 17:18:05 MST Print View

Winter is when Southern California shines. Balmy coastal plains and 11,000 foot snow encrusted peaks are within view of each other. Deserts like Joshua Tree and Anza Borrego are inviting this time of year. Skiing at resorts is usually getting good, but backcountry the cover is often thin. The Sierra is fairly close with lots of alpine options.

The main question is- what do you want to do?

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: SoCal Winter- plan for 0F blizzards and 85F at the beach on 01/05/2010 17:51:49 MST Print View

I agree with Jim. What do you want to do. Something different than your usual haunts?

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
It's warm on 01/05/2010 17:54:23 MST Print View

"Shine" is exactly what it does. I could comfortably go hiking in sandals, shorts and a t-shirt today. At lower elevations.

Jona Schuman
(jonaschuman) - F

Locale: Adirondacks
SoCal Winter on 01/05/2010 17:58:44 MST Print View

Thanks for the info. I'll have a look at the Mt. San Jacinto forum.

Ideally, I'd like to get into the mountains (the higher and/or more scenic the better). However, I guess my real constraints are cold/wintry conditions. I'll be with non-winter-loving folks and/or solo. (I wouldn't hike solo in northeast winter weather.) Also, I figure it'd be a pain to pack my snowshoes, bulky winter sleeping bag, and white-gas stove for the flight over.

If I could get by at lower elevations with microspikes (or just boots/trail runners), a 15F (or lighter) bag, and an esbit/alky stove, I'd be happy. If that means staying out of the mountains, I wouldn't mind trying something new; I've never been to any deserts.

Hikin' Jim
(hikin_jim) - MLife

Locale: Orange County, CA, USA
Re: SoCal Winter on 01/21/2010 21:59:48 MST Print View

If I could get by at lower elevations with microspikes (or just boots/trail runners), a 15F (or lighter) bag, and an esbit/alky stove, I'd be happy. If that means staying out of the mountains, I wouldn't mind trying something new; I've never been to any deserts.
You'll do fine with that kind of gear unless as has been mentioned, there's a storm.

Besides the Mt. San Jacinto forum, check out the San Gabriels forum http://sangabrielmnts.myfreeforum.org/index.php and the San Gorgonio Wilderness bulletin board http://members.boardhost.com/sgva/

HJ