I've long thought of skiing across Tioga. It seems that's the easiest of the trans sierra ski trips, which is good. Plus, there are two cabins, which is even better. My question is, does anyone ever do an out and back (Yo-Yo) of this trip? I'd obviously be twice as hard physically, and twice as long, but it'd remove the logistical problems inherent in such a trip. For me and my friends we fee that the extra length and difficultly would be a worthy trade for the logistical ease.
Has anyone done what I am suggesting? Any advice? How did the strategy work for you?
I haven't done that but I almost did, on a different route. I have skied a trans-sierra and the logistics of the shuttle are indeed a lot of work. When I was planning my trip I came to the conclusion that the ski back would not take much longer than the car shuttle stuff would. We eventually found someone to do the driving. Unless you can find someone to drop you off on one side and pick you up on the other I would go for the Yo-Yo, but I would vary the route so you see some different sights on the way back. Which side do you plan to start on?
Skied/Hiked the Tioga Rd in April or May, East to West. It ended up being half hiking and half skiing because of the low snow year. By the time I got to the bottom of the snow creek switchbacks, I knew there was no way I was going to hike back up them to reverse the route. Ended up hitching, train, and catching a ride with friend back the the Eastside.
Years ago,my partner & I skied in January from Conway Summit on Hwy.395 up Virginia Lakes Road over Summit Pass to Tuolumne Meadows and down to the locked gate on Hwy.120 above Lee Vining .Another skier returning to his car at that gate gave us a ride back to our car at Conway. We saw no skiers or tracks for four days until Dog Lake at Lembert Dome . We had great weather and a full moon that lit up the Meadows . We meet lots of skiers coming from Lee Vining and Mammoth Lakes .
I've skied the High Route - Symmes Creek to Wolverton both ways - East to West and West to East. Great trans-Sierra, highly recommended. We didn't do these tours back to back and the trips were separated by 9 years. You may not be aware of this, but the park service allows you to cache food,supplies in a shipping container located behind the cabin (summer campground office) at Tuolumne Meadows campground. They have rules on the type of container for your food, and when you are able to put your cache in their container. I believe the last date is October 15, but check with the rangers. We did a tour from Tioga to Mammoth one spring. We got a ride from Caltrans as we were walking up 120 from the gate 5 miles W of Lee Vining.They dropped us off at Tioga Pass Resort saving us ~ 8 miles and nearly 3,000 ft of walking. Their truck stopped and they said get in, so we loaded our packs, skis and us in the back.