REALLY strange trip - Part 1 | High Sierra Topix  

REALLY strange trip - Part 1

If you've been searching for the best source of information and stimulating discussion related to Spring/Summer/Fall backpacking, hiking and camping in the Sierra Nevada...look no further!
User avatar

Re: REALLY strange trip - Part 1

Postby seanr » Thu Sep 22, 2016 12:43 pm

Cross Country,

I had plans early summer to head out to some of the areas in your report on a fast paced one or two night trip. My version of hyper mostly consists of nearly constant walking, scrambling, jogging, and climbing while out in the wilderness. Unlike you back then, I postponed for two reasons:

1) I severely sprained a toe while walking around my house. It somewhat restricted me from long days on foot for a month.

2) The big June snowstorm hit.

I did manage a dayhike of Goat Mountain in July, but struggled with the altitude that day.

Funny thing is though, when I allowed a boulder to crush my ankle several miles from a planned summit on the 4th of July, three years ago, my first thought was, "Maybe I can still make it to the summit and suffer tomorrow." When I stood up and tried to weight that leg, I got my answer. I instantly knew something was broken.

I crabwalked rough class 2 until reaching rough trail where I improvised a wooden crutch to go with the one trekking pole I was carrying that day (I had lost the other). Along the way, someone heading the opposite direction gave me a trekking pole to borrow and some Vitamin I. I refused any escort as it seemed pointless. I hopped out, fortunately close enough to my car campsite that it only took about 6 hours. I made hamburgers and took a shower while I waited for my family to get back from the nearby lake so I could be driven to the hospital.

I was back in the Sierra four months after surgery to add screws and remove cartilage. Teaching that leg how to walk, jump, and run again was an interesting experience. Exercise was the key to getting near 100% again (it will never be 100%). Thanksgiving had special meaning that year with a snowy summit of Three Sisters and Kaiser Peaks before heading to Visalia for the big meal.

Anyway, I enjoyed your report and hope to get deeper into that area next summer!



Sent from my XT1254 using Tapatalk



User avatar
seanr
Topix Regular
 
Posts: 257
Joined: Thu Feb 06, 2014 9:46 am
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: REALLY strange trip - Part 1

Postby giantbrookie » Thu Sep 22, 2016 1:30 pm

balzaccom wrote:I enjoyed reading about it, and remembering what some of my trips were like back in those days. For those of you who are younger---it WAS different back then, if only because of the equipment we took!

Yes, many of us had trips where things went awry and we made some iffy decisions or worse. Yes our equipment was different, but for me, the biggest difference was in fact what was in my head. I had some very close calls in my younger years and every one of these close calls was a result of really bad judgement on my part. I wish I could say that is was only one example and I got smart and learned from it but there were in fact multiple examples. A few of them are: 1. Ascending something I wasn't sure how I'd get down on Mt Abbot, leading to some real athletic theatrics on the way down (Age 18). 2. Very questionable crossing of Bubbs Creek at Jct Meadow in early May (Age 19). 3. Coming close to not self arresting in time on Mt Brewer day after no. 2 above--bad decision to attempt to glissade something so steep with sheer cliff below said steep snowslope. Note that no. 2 and 3 took place after a bad fall slipping on boulder during a stream crossing injured my right hip (one mile from Road's End). 4. Crossing toe of rock glacier to get to better casting spots for 18" goldens and as a result nearly getting crushed by rolling boulder. Should not have even attempted to walk across such unstable ground. Broke ankle upon landing after titanic jump to dodge said boulder (age 31--yes I should have been wiser by then).
Since my fishing (etc.) website is still down, you can be distracted by geology stuff at: http://www.fresnostate.edu/csm/ees/facu ... ayshi.html
User avatar
giantbrookie
Founding Member & Forums Moderator
Founding Member & Forums Moderator
 
Posts: 2439
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2005 10:22 am
Location: Fresno
Experience: N/A

Re: REALLY strange trip - Part 1

Postby Cross Country » Thu Sep 22, 2016 6:58 pm

It was really nice to read about seanr and giantbrooki doing things similar to me. It least I wasn't tho only loco walking around the sierra.
Walking up the creek from below Eagle Scout Lake I saw to my right maybe the best rock formations I have ever seen. During that hike I REALLY regretted not bringing a camera. I've always wished someone took pictures of what I saw. I'm not saying no one saw what I did in that place. I'm just saying I would imagine no one on HST currently has ever been up that creek. If anyone has, please speak (write) up.
Cross Country
Topix Fanatic
 
Posts: 1119
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 11:16 am
Experience: N/A

Re: REALLY strange trip - Part 1

Postby Cross Country » Thu Sep 22, 2016 7:07 pm

To John Harper - I've had this lifelong habit of really speaking my mind which makes most people dislike me. But honestly I know myself and I accept this and I let is bother me only occasionally. VERY FEW people who need lots of positive reinforcement speak their mind freely.
You're certainly entitled to your opinion and believe me I truly respect and appreciate you speaking (writing) your mind.
Cross Country
Topix Fanatic
 
Posts: 1119
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 11:16 am
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: REALLY strange trip - Part 1

Postby seanr » Fri Sep 23, 2016 7:31 am

Cross Country,

I suspect these Eagle Scout Lake mentions may stick somewhere in my memory if I ever start getting out on longer trips.

I've been meaning to write up in detail, as you did, accounts from the location of some of my bigger misadventures. I'll summarize here for the time being:

So, as mentioned in my previous post, I learned the hard way about unnecessarily deviating from use trails, the real danger of boulder slopes, and carefully checking rocks for stability. This was in Little Slide Canyon, near the Incredible Hulk. If I ever learn about technical climbing, I suppose that one needs to be atop my to do list.

Anyway, I returned to Little Slide exactly a year later, on 4th of July again, with both my dogs, and successfully summitted Kettle Peak without deviating into any random, sketchy boulder piles. It is possible to keep routes there moderate class 2 besides the class 3 summit. Actually, I skipped the summit due to the dogs protesting. The day was uneventful as far as danger. I had gained wisdom, ended a grudge, and would never need to reflect on the lessons there again, right?

Well, the next summer, leaving from the same trailhead, I had my worst mountain experience ever. I learned a lot again, but that one is hard to summarize and a story I am not eager to share.

Fast forward another year to this July. I no longer have dogs, so now all I needed was someone half my age and above my ability level as a partner in crime. We had cancelled an aggressively paced two night outing because he had mysteriously developed a massively swollen knee during the drive up and could barely walk. He notified me via phone and I did an easy hike by myself the first day. Undeterred, he did some test hikes, loosened his knee up, and continued the drive north to Twin Lakes. The next day, we did a moderate hike together of an unnamed peak high up Horse Creek Canyon and although hiking down was not great for him, he did pretty well.

The next day we headed up Little Slide Canyon. Oh, Boy! We had Eocene Peak in mind, but on the way up canyon, he got distracted by Kettle Peak. Hmmmm. We became so distracted, that he convinced me not to wait for the easy class 2 scree slog from Ice Lake Pass. Instead we headed into the towers and spires. We cliffed out. OK, so we would have a unique, but reasonable traverse over to the class 2 route, right? Sure, but we soon found a long, steep couloir. We could not resist. The problem became that we had no axe nor pons and, even if we had, the col was almost entirely devoid of snow. It is a ski route, not a summer route! After at least 30 minutes of steep, but safe ascending, we found ourselves abandoning a chute that became sketchy class 3. Next, we were chopping steps in steep angle, hard, decomposed granite to attempt the other branch of the chute. We thought there would be just one brief sketchy section, but when my partner was still chopping steps in between kitty litter strewn class 4-5 moves above me, I muttered several choice, profane words. We methodically worked our way out of danger over the next hour. Back to the other chute. Sketchy class 3 and one or two easy class 4 moves earned us the summit plateau and eventually the block. It was actually my first time atop the block on my third attempt of this "easy" peak. We would take the known easy route back right? Well, why not explore some more? Fortunately our unresearched route back was class 2 at worst and garnered a treasured photo of me in a very unique looking spot!

If I ever get to Eagle Scout Lake, I hope it is an adventure!

Sounds like you and Saint Diane had some grand adventures. If my wife had been along with me on my best/worst outings, I suspect profuse profanity might have been getting off very easy. She did not find my Kettle Peak stories amusing in any sense of the word!

Sent from my XT1254 using Tapatalk
User avatar
seanr
Topix Regular
 
Posts: 257
Joined: Thu Feb 06, 2014 9:46 am
Experience: N/A

Re: REALLY strange trip - Part 1

Postby Cross Country » Fri Sep 23, 2016 11:20 am

I apologize if I've written this before now.
The first time I took Diane over goat crest was an adventure. There was a great deal of snow on the Kid Lakes side. Just down from the summit I decided that we should slide down the snow. I let my pack go an it slid down pretty rapidly. I let her pack go down. I sat on my rain poncho wearing shorts. Diane was in shorts. Going down I was going so fast it frightened me but I held on to the rain poncho. When Diane came down she panicked (not her fault but my fault). She let go of the poncho to put her hands down to slow down. The really fast slide was in snow cups (not really big but still a little dangerous). When she let go of the poncho she was sliding really fast on her butt in shorts AND on the bare legs. Do you know what this causes? - a really bad snow burn. I can't tell you how bad I felt doing this to (saint) Diane.
Cross Country
Topix Fanatic
 
Posts: 1119
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 11:16 am
Experience: N/A

User avatar

Re: REALLY strange trip - Part 1

Postby Wandering Daisy » Fri Sep 23, 2016 1:30 pm

Everyone has a different "style" of backpacking. Even when I was doing major technical alpine climbing, I stayed conservative. Few of my trips were ever "epic" in the sense of the one Cross Country is telling. I started climbing in the mid-1960's with old climbers who really impressed me with the notion that if I did not do "stupid" things there was no reason I could not be climbing at age 80. Now that I am 67, no past injuries, I am still going strong and thankful I can still do this.I have no regrets of having no similar epics to tell everyone. Other's epics are enjoyable to read; do not have to go there myself! I opt for "longevity" of backpacking; not epics. I plan on backpacking until I am at least 80 if not older!

Nevertheless, Cross Country, I am amazed at your "creativity" in those situations you got your self into.
User avatar
Wandering Daisy
Topix Junkie
 
Posts: 2607
Joined: Sun Jan 24, 2010 8:19 pm
Location: Fair Oaks CA (Sacramento area)
Experience: N/A

Re: REALLY strange trip - Part 1

Postby Cross Country » Sat Sep 24, 2016 8:49 am

I have almost all negative thoughts about my creativity because my boneheadednes is what necessitated my "creativity". The large majority of all of your comments have been really positive and I thank everyone of you. I actually wrote this because dispite what a bonehead I was I do believe it to be interesting.
Cross Country
Topix Fanatic
 
Posts: 1119
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 11:16 am
Experience: N/A

Previous

Return to Backpacking / Hiking / Camping



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Broot, Google [Bot], sekihiker and 11 guests