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Just Moved to SF and Need Climbing/Skiing Suggestions

14ers in California and Washington state or any other peak in the USA
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Re: Just Moved to SF and Need Climbing/Skiing Suggestions

Postby tommyboy360 » Mon Oct 03, 2011 7:31 pm

tygrubb wrote:Thanks for all the great responses. Bought my Squaw/Alpine Meadows pass the other day and will definitely have to check out some of the other good hikes/backcountry.


So jealous. It's the first year those 2 resorts have combined resources/access. It will probably create more skier traffic/development at AM.

Squaw has legendary terrain with everything "in-bounds" (no BC gates or BC access allowed) with easy hiking but tons of remote/hidden areas to explore. Squaw can ski out quickly but it's a major rush to be there when it happens. You will be shoulder to shoulder with some of the world's elite extreme skiers/boarders on a powder day at Squaw.

AM allows you quick and full access to the surrounding backcountry with the exception of the "jail chutes" aka the private resort area, White Wolf. It's the connecting terrain between Squaw/AM located off the backside of KT22. It's the last piece of a large real estate deal that would fully connect the 2 areas. Be sure to check out AM's surrounding BC areas like the "Munchkins" and "Little Alaska." You should definitely partner up for those exits into the BC. But you can safely solo hike off the AM six-pack in many different directions and you will still be able to score powder lines for days.

I hope another big snow year is on tap for NorCal and Colorado. It's feast or famine there in terms of snow conditions. Congrats on being one of the first to have the new Squaw/AM pass. Truly epic.
“It only ends once. Anything that happens before that is just progress.”

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Re: Just Moved to SF and Need Climbing/Skiing Suggestions

Postby peter303 » Tue Oct 04, 2011 8:19 am

Northern CA has plenty of tall mountains, except the closest tall ones are a half-day's drive away. So essentially you'll be making three-day weekends out of it, instead of day-trips like in Denver. Yosemite Half Dome from the Valley (now permitted) is the classic all-day hike.

There are four 14ers in the southern Sierras 8 hours away which are walk-ups. Plus there is Shasta and the Paliside 14ers which are not so easy.

S.F. has lots of topography for trail running. I ran the Stanford and Los Altos foothills several thousand times.
There plenty of hilly forest hiking and moderate mountains like Mt. Diablo, Mt. Tamalpias, Mission Hills, etc.
Unfortunately a few of these parks were closed in CA budget crisis.

The "weekend rush hour" in SF/LA is as bad or worse than Colorado. That is the drive out of the metro region late Friday afternoon and returning Sunday evening. Unless you can flextime Friday afternoons or Monday mornings off.

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Re: Just Moved to SF and Need Climbing/Skiing Suggestions

Postby peter303 » Tue Oct 04, 2011 10:25 am

The Silicon Valley (Loma Prieta) Sierra Club Peak Climbing Section is the equivalent of the CMC.
They have lots of trips to the mountains in the summer and desert in the winter.
http://peakclimbing.org/
The only problem I had with them was the late returns on Sunday. To avoid the Sunday afternoon
rush hour, they often return in the wee hours of Monday morning. They get in two full days of climbing too.

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Location: San Francisco

Re: Just Moved to SF and Need Climbing/Skiing Suggestions

Postby jf32 » Tue Oct 04, 2011 10:59 am

Hey tygrubb,

Welcome to SF. I am by no means an expert on places to climb (and definitely not places to ski) but I have been keeping myself busy out here. I've been here a year and am killing my 1 Cali 14er a year goal. (4 done with attempts on 3 others). The Eastern Sierra are pretty far away and I don't plan on heading back until next spring/summer. That said they are really amazing and offer a lot (but generally require long hike ins). Yosemite is awesome - I've been a few times and am interested in the peaks in the Northern part of the park (If you want to try something in the Cathedral group in the next few weeks I'd be interested in heading out).

Big Sur (2-3.5 hours away) and Point Reyes (1-2 hours away) are great closer hiking/camping alternatives but don't offer any tall peaks. Redwood NAtional Park was also really cool (5+ hours away) and Shasta (5ish hours) was great. I'd redo that via a different route (and climb Lassen next spring if you're interested).

If you'd like to grab a beer or two and chat feel free to send a pm.
When you come to a fork in the road take it

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Re: Just Moved to SF and Need Climbing/Skiing Suggestions

Postby peter303 » Tue Oct 04, 2011 3:27 pm

Dont write off Yosemite in the winter. The valley is accessible year round and always beautiful.
You can drive part way up Glacier road and ski or snowshoe to the rim.

If there is snow in the forecast the rangers may check you for tire chains before entering the park.
There is a modest 6K' pass to cross to enter the valley.

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Re: Just Moved to SF and Need Climbing/Skiing Suggestions

Postby The_Godfather » Tue Oct 11, 2011 7:20 am

Man....I am so glad that it didn't work out for me. I almost found myself in this exact situation. I couldn't see myself there, and I wish you the best in San Fran.

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Re: Just Moved to SF and Need Climbing/Skiing Suggestions

Postby Randy » Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:28 pm

I used to live in SF and climbed in Yosemite every weekend. When you get out of work friday take off, I used to sleep near Toulome meadows on friday night to acclimate and i could climb to 14,000ft sat or sun.

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Re: Just Moved to SF and Need Climbing/Skiing Suggestions

Postby bob863 » Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:33 am

Don't limit yourself to Climbing/Skiing....the SF Bay area has a TON of activities....sea kayaking, mountain biking, road biking,
hiking, road/trail running, ocean/pool swimming, etc....

I lived in the Silicon Valley area for 23 years so please feel free to ask me for suggestions....

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