had originally planned to go exploring this weekend and check out some new spots but as a backup i thought of going to this fine sierra peak. however due to lack of snow coverage i bailed on my exploration of new places and just went with plan b. its always a good idea to have a plan b. and what a good plan b it turned out to b. after two days there im upgrading it to plan a+++
the standard approach for this involves only 3000 ft of climbing for about 5k of riding and a car shuttle. well its still too early in the year for the standard approach as the road access is still very snowbound. so i parked at the bottom and started there.
its a simple traverse on the old mining road for about 30 min to get to the drainage that leads to this peak, which is called sardine canyon. anyway due to the north facing aspect of the south wall of this canyon i was able to skin right from the bottom, and of course ride all the way back. the gullies on the peak were filled in nicely despite the poor snowpack in the south this year. the bottom 3000 feet were variable conditions with pockets of older powder mixed in with some transitional corn down lower. the top 2000 feet was all old powder!
well i had such a fun day on sat, with clear sunny skies light winds good snow and 5k feet of riding, the only thought on my mind when i finished was i couldnt wait to go back and do the same run all over again! thats been sort of a theme for me this year. anyway sunday was just as good but a “bit windy”
so i will start with some pics from around the neighborhood. due to a late start on sat i was able to go scope out conditions in some of my favorite areas – hogsback drainage and tunnabora peak. :drool: :drool: :drool: :drool: :drool: :drool: :drool: :drool: :drool:
williamson – do you see what i see?
this south facing south facing gully calls out to me every time i pass by.
and the north side of the same peak is also very alluring
independence peak. classic gully. this one is a nice roadside attraction although this time of year its a bit more effort to get there.
the peak of the above gully looking nicely filled in.
….and now for the feature presentation – sardine canyon
hello mr crown
hello mr moon
and back again for round 2. dont you just hate those knuckledragging snowboarders???!!! :headbang:
there is nothing too challenging about these north facing gullies. except that they are a lot longer than they look and i didnt have anyone there to help with breaking trail, and it was about knee to waist deep booting.
like the book says just steep enough to be interesting. well worth the effort!
sundays winds refreshing things and moving lots of snow. i thought i would have been able to follow my booter from sat but nope.
insert rider …….there
i didnt top out either day, but that is no big deal, even with all the effort put into the climb. both days i made it to a little over 12k and then called it a day. i guess the summit will have to wait for another day. oh well i wont be sad to return to this spot. till next time…..
tunnabora and pinyon look siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiick
if you look on google earth some lady crashed her plane on top of this mountain and had to grovel down that drainage injured and finally stumbled into independence in middle of the night to get saved. bradley peak right?