Terrible snow conditions. Double Fall Camp site had 8 to 10 inches of snow and temps well below freezing. Group decided to camp on Thompson's’ Overlook. Winds hit over 30 mph and were constant. Tarp tent collapsed and Wayne survived rolled up in tarp.
I fell hard in tunnel due to ice sheet, but no serious injury, except to my pride. Hike in was 4 hours and 3 hours out. Estimated distance was 10.2 miles for total hike.
Found a spring close to the top at Double Falls trail. It is fitted with a pipe. Water in
Thompson Creek was too high to cross to Double Falls. Hike to tunnel was pretty, but the
tunnel itself isn’t not worth the effort. Could not judge the condition of the campsite Double Falls due to the heavy snow.
Sara and Jennifer did ok with REI Quarter Dome Tents, as did Rex with TNF tent.
They are clearly a better choice in high wind than Wayne and my tarp setups. Alcohol stove Wayne used did not perform well in the wind. Jennifer Zahn, Sara Pollard, Wayne Yancey and Rex Jarvis were a great group of backpackers in really tough conditions.
Overall a difficult trip where planning should have been better on my part. Pickett Park
rangers remain useless for current trail information and even closed office Sat. for 12 to 12: 30 for lunch! Called both Thurs. and Fri. for updates on conditions, but got no help. In the future if there are questions on major conditions like it was this weekend, I need to pre-hike the area when there is no local help. Suggest Hidden Passage should be in warm weather hike.