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Home Forums TR Archive California Eastside 4.26.2008 eastern sierra – university peak

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    University Peak south face, Onion Valley, Eastern Sierra, CA. 4.26.2008

    There is a place in the southern part of the Eastern Sierra called onion valley. I call it Clyde country since this is an area Norman Clyde climbed frequently. Im not sure where the onion valley name came from but its a classic place to enjoy some classic eastside lines. There is a nice road here that goes up to about 9K ft and this time of year you can easily drive all the way up, then start skinning right from the truck. There are a couple different ways to go and each drainage has access to some great lines.

    I always enjoy learning a little history about an area. In “the book” Moynier says this peak was named in honor of university of CA. That fact was kind of interesting to me, espeically since the peak I was on last weekend was also named in honor of a rival school.

    I had been trying to meet up with Forrest AKA dasteeps for a good part of this season. Finally we were able to plan a day out so we both decided upon university. Its the highest peak in the area and tops out a little over 13,500 ft. There are lines on the north and south side, we ended up on the south side, which is approached from the Robinson lake drainage.

    the line. there was about 2000 ft of approach to this which was thru some great terrain.

    forrest checking out the hike ahead

    some nice looking lines in the neighborhood. if i was fast and had more time i would have loved to have done one of these also.

    daskintrack stoke

    the ridgeline that leads up to university peak, with robinson lake visible down far below.

    looking down after a long climb. the crampons really were not necessary (especially with forrest setting in a nice boot track with his hard boots!) but i had brought them so i figured might as well use them

    from the top the views were amazing as usual. you are looking north to the rae lakes basin which is a very popular summer backpacking destination. i was freaking out about that sweet looking couloir – you know which one! its now definitely on the list although would require a multi-day tour to get it done.

    rae lakes

    that nice peak with the bowl on the left looks pretty sweet as does the nice big peak with that west facing line!

    i really want to go tour back there!

    looking north. a lifetime of lines! seeing views like this really make me think i have only been scratching at the surface with my little day trips to places easily accessed from the eastside 395 corridor.

    ok so 2 lifetimes worth of lines. this is onlyone part of the range, it just goes on and on and on. ok done ranting for now…

    one last look down the line, time to ride!


    i dont ride with people often so when i do i enjoy shooting. i have to practice my action/riding shots. one little gripe i have about the nikon d100 is the buffer fills up after only a handful of shots, then you have to wait till you can shoot again. i guess they corrected that in newer models.

    the days work….one last look at the line. it was about 2k ft. still over 2k of riding to go! just had to hike out of the upper basin a short way. no shots of riding in the lower treed section but that was a ton of fun.

    it was a great day for riding and the snow was nice and soft. the pics make it look maybe a bit more slushy than it was.

    after getting back to the cars and going our seperate ways i went down into the valley to enjoy the remainder of the day.

    some shots from down low:

    this is a shot of a line i rode earlier in the year >>>>> hogback #1

    the valley is so green right now its really nice to see!

    some wildflower shots:

    the bug goes splat!

    they call it “the range of light”


    @fullers2oh wrote:

    the line. there was about 2000 ft of approach to this which was thru some great terrain.

    I’ve hit that!
    Nice one guys. That’s a fun area.
    I bagged it this weekend. Not motivated anymore.
    Fullers, get me motivated for an overnighter please.
    Nice pics


    F2Oh, as always great TR. The opening sunrise over the peak and sun set over the range shots are great. Both you and BGnight always seem to have one pic in darkness or as daybreaks.

    Great range to the north of your lines and if that does not get BGnight motivated to hook up for an overnight he needs to get his pulse checked. Good luck exploring that area, I’m sure many TRs will follow.


    Good stuff โ— Finally one I’ve actually been too.
    How’s it holding up?
    I took the family up into Rock creek to poke around looks pretty nice up in there still. 2 ft at roads end, lots of people fishing on the ice.
    I saw 3 skiers coming down, looked nice, south facing.


    Ha ha. Way to ski the best line on the mountain and blow off the ‘book line’.


    There is a surprising lack of bushwack photos in this TR. WTF? Dave, you feeling OK? ๐Ÿ™‚ Also, I am confused about which captions go with which pictures…

    Nice job, looks like a fun line.


    Thanks for posting some pics Dave. I think that “sweet looking “couloir” on the west side should be called “Laser Line” or something to that affect. Talked to friend that was on the other side camping at the pinnacles and sounded pretty good on east to northeast facing also. I still think we got the goods and even without the south county bushwack. Hurray for spring road opening access, but of course it comes with the hoards as we noticed.


    @fullers2oh wrote:

    looking north. a lifetime of lines! seeing views like this really make me think i have only been scratching at the surface with my little day trips to places easily accessed from the eastside 395 corridor.

    Couldn’t agree more. It makes my head swim just thinking about the possibilities. Nice shots as usual. Nice snow this time too!!

    Putting the poo in swimming pool since 1968.


    Looks nice…I love all the granite…almost time for the rope there huh? We won’t be climbing up here in the pnw till july.

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