Sequoia NF - Piute Mtn - Jan/Feb

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gooroo_dougie

Rank I
Member

Contributor I

233
San Diego, CA, USA
First Name
Douglas
Last Name
Mengers
Member #

20424

Hey all! New to the community, transitioning from backpack camping to vehicle-based adventuring. I drive lots of dirt utility roads in the SoCal backcountry for work, but have started getting out on my own now, mostly truck trails and campgrounds while I kit out for longer trips and dispersed camping.

I just listened to the OB Podcast episode from September, “Change Your Life – Overland Challenge” and got real jazzed. Michael mentioned 600 miles driving and 2 nights off the grid, solo. It might be Jan/Feb before I can do that, but 300 miles each way puts me in the southern Sierra, which rocks. I’ve come to love the SoCal deserts, but I jones for pine trees and the occasional cloud.

I’m looking at Piute Mountain Road (S of Lake Isabella), maybe via Bright Star Wilderness or Jawbone Canyon, and I imagine the are OB members who have been out that way. I’m unfamiliar with the area and want to make sure that route isn’t too technical (my rig is a Mazda CX-5 AWD with new A/Ts, 8.5” clearance). I love camping in the snow, but don’t have a ton of experience driving in it. Anyone have recommendations for good places to overnight? Or is there somewhere else nearby that’s epic that I’m overlooking? Thanks in advance!
 

Rick Morehouse

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Influencer III

3,260
Utah, USA
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Rick
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Morehouse
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20470

Paiute mtn rd if I remember correctly (I grew up in Tehachapi moved to Utah 5 years ago) is generally closed that time of year but there are some awesome places that can be reached year round in the southern sierras. Generally anywhere in the vicinity of lake Isabella, Jawbone canyon could be a great starting point for you just head west from there and you can get into some spectacular wilderness areas
 

gooroo_dougie

Rank I
Member

Contributor I

233
San Diego, CA, USA
First Name
Douglas
Last Name
Mengers
Member #

20424

Awesome, thank you very much for the feedback! I'll check on the seasonal road closures - I tend to forget about that since we don't have much of it in the San Diego area. Thanks again!