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This Years Sierra Mosquitos ??
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Art ...
(asandh) - F
This Years Sierra Mosquitos ?? on 06/14/2013 08:23:12 MDT Print View

Can anyone tell me what this years mosquito pattern is in the High Sierra ?
How much did the low snow year impact things ?
Are they out now ?
When should they start disappearing in this dry year ?


Billy Ray
(rosyfinch) - M

Locale: the mountains
skeeters.... on 06/14/2013 08:33:07 MDT Print View

Yes. They are in full force now. They will not entirely disappear until temperatures drop in the fall. But the worst will be this month.. should be tolerable by early July this year as things are drying up fast.

In a normal year the mosquito month would be July.
But due to the low snow pack things are melting out about a month ahead of normal.

The above is for the High Sierra and eastern approaches.
If you come in from the west mosquitoes are generally worse and last longer... wetter for longer on the west side slopes.

To avoid mosquitos camp high, out of the trees, where you can expect a breeze. Camp selection can make a HUGE difference.

Bill D

Art ...
(asandh) - F
Re: skeeters.... on 06/14/2013 08:47:41 MDT Print View

we're headed out next week, will try to camp high.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: skeeters.... on 06/14/2013 10:07:34 MDT Print View

Yeah, In my experience June up in the mountains the are always pretty bad - or ranging from pretty bad to nightmarish.

They seem to hatch out more based on temperature than overall water - they always seem to have more than enough water even on low snow years. June in the Sierra is one of those times that, in my book, call for Permethrin. Spray it on the outside of your hiking pants and shirt once and let it dry overnight, and it really removes the issue from the table for at least a week.

Even though they aren't very frisky at all in the evening, during the early summer I always am happy to have a fully enclosed shelter. I don't mind the occasional bites, but that one half-frozen mosquito slowly buzzing around my tent always eventually fly right in my ear just as I'm nodding off. Ack...torture!

Chris S
(csteutterman) - F

Locale: Tahoe
HST on 06/14/2013 10:08:08 MDT Print View

High Sierra Topix also has a thread going with actual mosquito reports.

2013 Mosquito Reports

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: HST on 06/14/2013 10:15:05 MDT Print View

From that web site: "The worst mosquitoes seem to be in a band from 7400-8200 feet.
A "4" at these locations"

Yeah, that is more or less the elevation band I'm thinking about too. It could be because a lot of places I go in June are at that elevation, but I wonder if there are entomological reasons for this. Maybe it is just the temperature range there at this time of year.

Bill Law
(williamlaw) - M

Locale: SF Bay Area
Re: Re: HST on 06/15/2013 10:42:40 MDT Print View

I suspect those numbers increase proportional to the rate of snow melt. Don't the skeeters need standing water to hatch? Too soon and there's no water. Too late and the water has dried up.

Brian Mix
(Aggro) - MLife

Locale: Western slope, Sierra Nevada
pretty bad last week on 06/17/2013 15:24:15 MDT Print View

I was hiking in the crystal range last week, hiking in was sunny. In the late afternoon a thunder storm rolled in and due to overcast conditions the mosquitoes really came out. If I stopped hiking I'd literally have 40-50 landing on me. I jogged for a while and continuously swatted my arms/face/legs with my t shirt. Now is prime time for them.

Paul Maguire
I HATE mosquitos! on 06/24/2013 15:28:13 MDT Print View

My family and I did a 3 day loop in Emigrant Wilderness this past weekend... The first day/night was nearly bug free. Then, on the second day/night, we got eaten alive! It was pretty bad, some of the worst bugs I have encountered in a while.

Its pretty dry already, so I suspect the bugs will taper off pretty quick. As a comparison, last year when I did the JMT (started in late July), I don't think I saw a single mozzi.

Richard Reno
(scubahhh) - M

Locale: White Mountains, mostly.
4 on what scale? on 06/24/2013 15:44:44 MDT Print View

"The worst mosquitoes seem to be in a band from 7400-8200 feet.
A "4" at these locations"

4's pretty livable if the scale is 1-10. On a scale of 1-3, 4 kinda sux!

Richard Cullip
(RichardCullip) - M

Locale: San Diego County
Re: 4 on what scale? on 06/24/2013 16:39:09 MDT Print View

it's a 1-5 scale as used over on High Sierra Topix

1 - No mosquitoes or if there are some, but not biting yet
2 - Very light during the day, moderate at dawn and dusk
3 - Moderate during the day, heavy at dawn and dusk
4 - Heavy during the day, heavy at dawn and dusk
5 - Unbearable all day, no breaks, cannot eat outside of tent. If you stop, hundreds
will descend on you; when looking thru a camera viewfinder, you see more skeeters than
lake. If you slapped your arm, you'd smear blood from all the dead gorged bodies

Edited by RichardCullip on 06/24/2013 16:39:49 MDT.

USA Duane Hall
(hikerduane) - F

Locale: Extreme northern Sierra Nevada
pretty bad last week on 06/25/2013 14:05:40 MDT Print View

I was car camping last weekend on the Plumas NF here in N CA, at a little over 4200' close to home, enough to be pesky so as to have to clear your face, neck, arms a few times every minute. Worst of the season so far. Not enough for DEET yet.

Jason G
(JasonG) - F

Locale: iceberg lake
trt on 06/25/2013 14:49:01 MDT Print View

I did the TRT the 9th-15th. there were 0 skeeters along the north, east and south of the lake but the west shore (desolation wilderness) based on the rating scale above, it was probably a 3.5 or 4... pretty unbearable after 5pm.

Charles P
(mediauras) - F

Locale: Terra
Re: This Years Sierra Mosquitos ?? on 06/25/2013 22:09:47 MDT Print View

I was in hoover wilderness 9 days ago and above 9600 ft or so there were few mosquitoes. Our first night out, camped at 10k or so it got down to around 28–30 degrees, a very good anti-bug temp!

Kevin Burton
(burtonator) - F

Locale: norcal
Two weeks ago. on 06/27/2013 17:06:19 MDT Print View

they were really bad about two weeks ago.

I'm impervious now though.

I have baggy clothes and long socks and gloves and netting for my head.

I simply don't care about them any more. It's awesome.

A *few* got me but I came back with maybe 2-3 bites max :)

I would highly recommend that setup.

Also, tan clothing helps.

Art ...
(asandh) - F
Re: This Years Sierra Mosquitos ?? on 06/27/2013 22:33:51 MDT Print View

as of June 21-25 I would rate the mosquitos on the JMT from Kearsarge Pass to Reds Meadow mostly a 2, with a few spots 2.5 to 3.