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Old June 2nd, 2008, 01:06 PM
montanablur montanablur is offline
Sinuhe Xavier
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Neither here, nor there...
Posts: 584
Hwy 395 and some odd side roads...

It was a simple plan really, run up to Yosemite for some spring climbing. This would have been easily accomplished if I just took the short route through that embarrassing pit of land known as the San Joaquin Valley. The 395 is a great highway just after it hits the 14 and it had been a year or so since I made the drive through Owens Valley, one of the deepest in the U.S.






It's a different kind of desert in the northern Mojave, a lot of abandoned settlements and businesses in ruin. Similar to the apocalyptic feel of the desert near the Salton Sea.



The first night was spent in the shadow of Mt. Whitney, the highest point in the lower 48.




I spent the better part of the next day in no hurry to get up to Yosemite as reports of snow came over the 2 meter, instead exploring the base of Whitney around Movie Road.




By afternoon I had found out Tioga Pass was closed while refueling in Bishop, so I stopped in the BLM office to see what my options were. The nice guy behind the counter was very good at trying to dissuade me from going above 7,000 feet, where the snow would be impassable. Here I am at 8,000 feet and not a sign of snow... Government workers.





This camp was such a change of place compared to all the desert camping I had been doing. It had Aspen trees, meadows and a babbling brook...


But man was it cold... I shot this of my friend at first light, my lens immediately fogged over as I took the shot and decided I would stay in my bag, even if I did miss out on the sunrise shots...


The Buttermilks were close by and a few thousand feet lower so we headed down for some bouldering and scrambling over rocks. Hardly Yosemite, but it would have to do for now.




Adios for now...
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