September 26, 2020
Dawn on the Slopes of Mount Tallac
I arrived at the trailhead shortly before sunrise. It was hot and dry as ever down in the Bay Area. But near the shores of Lake Tahoe was a refreshingly different story. The days were growing shorter. And 6000 vertical feet above sea level, with a chill in the air, things finally felt like a proper Fall.
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August 6, 2020, Lone Pine
Alabama Hills amidst California Mountains
The morning after successfully summiting Mount Whitney, I joined a friend for some rock climbing in the nearby Alabama Hills. We had spent the night in Lone Pine, roughly 4000′ below the trailhead for Whitney.
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August 5, 2020, Whitney Portal
A month before this ascent, I had zero intention of summiting Mt Whitney in 2020. Hiking Whitney requires a permit, drawn from a lottery back in March, that I did not possess as of Mid-July. I hadn’t entered said lottery because in March I didn’t even know I’d be living in California, let alone hiking the Sierras.
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August 2, 2020, Twin Lakes Campground/Dragon’s Back Trailhead
I snagged a pretty excellent parking spot in an otherwise fully packed lot at Twin Lakes Campground. I arrived mid-morning on a peak late-summer Sunday. The place was humming with campers and paddlers and hikers. The journey began with a walk across a bridge between the two “twin lakes” towards the various camping and RV spots under tree cover. The scene was gorgeous, with a broad stream of water cascading down grassy boulders into the lake below.
Continue reading “The Dragon’s Back Trail to Mammoth Mountain”
July 12, 2020, Devil’s Postpile National Monument
I drove the winding roadway towards the Devil’s Postpile National Monument around the crack of dawn. I had spent Saturday mountain biking at Mammoth ski area, staying overnight right near the main base. As luck would have it, the roadway to Devil’s Postpile runs right past the base lodge, underneath the gondola. The road promptly narrows from a standard 2-way state highway to a winding, unstriped mountain adventure. And the views from this drive are nothing short of stunning. Jagged stone peaks rose up from the rolling hills of conifers, snowfields, and rushing waters—the Eastern Sierras in mid-summer!
Continue reading “Devil’s Postpile and Rainbow Falls (Mammoth Lakes)”