Okay, this is bordering on the absurd.
The cropped screen shot below is from the Mammoth Mountain snow report, posted today, February 10, 2017.
That’s 25 feet of snow at the summit and a measly 14 feet at the Main Lodge. That is a lot of water waiting to flow down the streams and rivers toward the farms, cities, and the Pacific Ocean. [Editor’s note: This is a general statement. In the case of Mammoth, the water will actually stay on the eastern flank of the Sierra.]
Just seems to confirm that California is almost always in either a state of drought or flood. Two years ago, there was almost no snow on the peaks. Hopefully, the weather will warm up slowly this year so all that water at the top of the Sierra will work its way down into the reservoirs and water courses in a gradual fashion. If not, it may be a few months before hikers and backpackers can work their way up to the alpine lakes and creeks through rushing rivers.
The mosquito season in the mountains is probably going to be a little longer this year, so hikers will want to bring their best repellents and netting. By the way, a little known fact is that mosquito netting is also a weight loss tool–it’s hard to shovel those calories into your mouth with netting over your face. And, who likes inhaling dozens of blood-carrying pests just to get a bite of oatmeal?
Anyway, this summer is going to be a wet, green one. Get ready to enjoy it. Bring your waterproof boots, gaiters, poles, tarps, and fording ropes — oh, and swim suit.