Sierra Mountain Center

California’s premier mountaineering school and guide service – Bishop, CA

White Mountains Hike 6.11

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The White Mountains of California are truly fantastic. This unique range became wilderness only two years ago. It is high alpine desert and this year was marked by a profusion of flowers with fragrant phlox scenting the air. This year we had only one client, Robyn from Monaco (she hiked the JMT with us last year) but three guides, SP, Luke and Ryan.We start slowly up Cottonwood Creek. This is totally unexpected oasis of trees and meadows at above 10,000 feet on the crest of the range. We camped here one night and then stopped to visit friend Dori at Barcroft Station where she cooks (she even came over in the evening with fresh chocolate chip cookies). From there we camped on a wide open flat below White Mountain Peak.

Next day took us up to 14,000 on White Mountain Peak, along a tricky 3rd class rock section (but only 1/4 mile of it and on to the wide open spaces of the crest. Hiking along above 13,000 feet we saw a mama bighorn sheep and her lamb, both totally unconcerned about us. We camped at Cabin and Birch Creeks where the streams start 100 yards apart and then one flows east and one west.

Next day took us over more fantastic meadows in Chiadovich Flats and down Indian Creek to our pick up with beer, watermelon and the drive back to Bishop.

This is true wilderness and everyone should do this hike! It is simply the best and we cannot rave enough about it.

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Written by SP Parker

July 29, 2011 at 3:06 am

Posted in Hiking

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