East Side of the Sierras

East Side of the Sierras

This is taken from the White Mountains looking west to the Sierras. The town of Big Pine is in the valley, just barely visible on the right side of the image.

Road to Whitney Portal

Road to Whitney Portal

If you click on the image to enlarge it, the road to Whitney Portal becomes much more prominent as the scar across the hillside to the right side of the image. Whitney Portal is one of the access points for climbers heading up Mt Whitney is the highest mountain in the lower 48 with an elevation of 14,505 ft (4421 m). It is in California just to the west of Death Valley National Park and less than 100 miles from the lowest point in North America.

According to some historians, the Pi Ute [Paiute] Indians called Mt. Whitney Too-man-i-goo-yah, which means ‘the very old man.’

Mt Whitney Sunset

Mt Whitney Sunset

I can’t wait for the travel restrictions to lift so that I can freely travel to the desert SW. To the Lone Pine area, to the White Mountains and the Bristlecone Pines, to Death Valley, to the views of Mt Whitney.

In the photo above, Mt Whitney is about a third the way in from the left. It’s the fact that the mountain that looks tall is close that makes it looks tallest.

Bristlecones

Old Bristlecone
Middle Age Bristlecone
Bristlecone Stumps

The miners in the White Mountains around the turn of the 20th Century cut down these bristlecones that were hundreds of years old … or more. They used them for mine timbers and to build cabins for the few months of the year they could live at 10,000 feet. A complete travesty. Thoughtless carnage in the pursuit of a hopeless dream. We can just be happy that there was no large seam of high quality ore. If that had happened, the bristlecones would likely have all been logged.

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