April 8-21, 2017 report

Been on a recent trip? Here is the place to share it.
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wbdeford
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Post by wbdeford » Sat May 13, 2017 5:09 pm

teotwaki wrote: Looks to be a lupine and my guess is the Royal Desert Lupine
Looks like you nailed it. Thanks!

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MojaveGeek
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Post by MojaveGeek » Sat May 13, 2017 5:42 pm

It is funny that the Sierra Club (?) guy thought the Sentinal / Porter ridge was boring. I thought it was a stunning walk - one where you could keep your eyes on the views across the valley instead of watching your feet. Sounds like there was a fair amount of traffic up there at Panamint City too!

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wbdeford
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Post by wbdeford » Sat May 13, 2017 6:20 pm

MojaveGeek wrote:It is funny that the Sierra Club (?) guy thought the Sentinal / Porter ridge was boring. I thought it was a stunning walk - one where you could keep your eyes on the views across the valley instead of watching your feet. Sounds like there was a fair amount of traffic up there at Panamint City too!
Well, he teaches advanced mountaineering classes, so I think he likes more of a challenge than that ridge. But it is one I look forward to hiking next trip.

I think there was a total of about 20 people at Panamint City the Saturday I got there. I think I had it to myself Monday into Tuesday when a couple arrived.

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wbdeford
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Post by wbdeford » Mon May 15, 2017 7:19 pm

Was a beautiful afternoon April 12, coming down Big Pine Rd toward Crankshaft Crossing.

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set ... 4e94769e04

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MojaveGeek
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Post by MojaveGeek » Tue May 16, 2017 5:56 pm

Nice light!

My daughter asked, if there's cranks at Crankshaft Crossing and kettles at Teakettle Junction, what will we find at Deadman's Pass? Unfortunately no skeletons there...

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Candace_66
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Post by Candace_66 » Tue May 16, 2017 9:03 pm

wbdeford wrote:I just happened upon the report published by the Sierra Club group. It indicates that the group at the bottom along Surprise Canyon Rd was a Jewish group, but it doesn't elaborate. Here is their report:

http://www.firstchurchofthemasochist.co ... k-via.html

(I'm the Brian referenced in the report.)
You know, this just reminded me of something.

Two or three years ago, I visited Rocky at Ballarat. And I recall him telling me that some good-sized group that was coming to Ballarat. I think they were going to camp for at least a couple of days. Lastly, I recollect that it was a religious group of some kind. I wonder if it was the Jewish group mentioned here?

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Candace_66
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Post by Candace_66 » Tue May 16, 2017 9:05 pm

MojaveGeek wrote:It is funny that the Sierra Club (?) guy thought the Sentinal / Porter ridge was boring. I thought it was a stunning walk - one where you could keep your eyes on the views across the valley instead of watching your feet.
I'm glad to hear this, because I'm beginning to doubt I'll every make it up to Panamint City, and I have yet to climb Sentinel. So I've been considering the traverse from Porter (though I have already climbed Porter itself). :cool:

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MojaveGeek
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Post by MojaveGeek » Wed May 17, 2017 6:30 am

Approaching from Porter, there is a steep bit of less than 100 feet on the south side of Sentinal peak, but it is not a real obstacle. My daughter zipped right up it when she was 10 (but she was a damned good hiker for a kid!)

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wbdeford
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Post by wbdeford » Wed May 17, 2017 7:11 am

MojaveGeek wrote:Approaching from Porter, there is a steep bit of less than 100 feet on the south side of Sentinal peak, but it is not a real obstacle. My daughter zipped right up it when she was 10 (but she was a damned good hiker for a kid!)
That stretch concerned me from Google Earth. It's great to have the experiences of others to draw on!

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Death Valley Dazed
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Sure about no skeletons at Deadman's Pass?

Post by Death Valley Dazed » Wed May 17, 2017 10:40 am

MojaveGeek wrote:Nice light!

My daughter asked, if there's cranks at Crankshaft Crossing and kettles at Teakettle Junction, what will we find at Deadman's Pass? Unfortunately no skeletons there...
MojaveGeek, maybe you just have not looked closely enough? LOL

Your daughter sounds like such a delightful traveling companion - bright, sense of humor, curious and athletic. Hard to beat that combination. I hope she copies your love of the desert!
Life begins in Death Valley

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wbdeford
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Post by wbdeford » Wed May 17, 2017 7:43 pm

Shots from the divide between Hall and Surprise, including some panoramas of Telescope over to Sentinel, Telescope down to the Panamint Valley, and Sentinel down to the Panamint Valley.

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set ... da91aa1c46

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MojaveGeek
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Post by MojaveGeek » Thu May 18, 2017 5:19 pm

The hits keep happening. I enjoy those pix because some of the images are places I've been, and some are places I wanna be in :) You know as you traverse the ridge south of Telescope, on the west side (at least) there are some nice stands of pretty old bristlecones. Nice to come across when you're huffing and puffing and find some shade and it's obviously a real old tree. Now there's also some awful mountain mahogany right around the peaklet where the Hall/Surprise divide hits the main N/S crest, god I hate that stuff.

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wbdeford
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Post by wbdeford » Thu May 18, 2017 7:17 pm

MojaveGeek wrote:The hits keep happening. I enjoy those pix because some of the images are places I've been, and some are places I wanna be in :) You know as you traverse the ridge south of Telescope, on the west side (at least) there are some nice stands of pretty old bristlecones. Nice to come across when you're huffing and puffing and find some shade and it's obviously a real old tree. Now there's also some awful mountain mahogany right around the peaklet where the Hall/Surprise divide hits the main N/S crest, god I hate that stuff.
I assume you hate the mountain mahogany because it makes it difficult to get past some of them?

Before I did Sourdough, Panamint Pass, and Sentinel, I had pretty much given up on the crest traverse idea as too hard to be fun. But after that experience, I think I'm up for it, probably going from south to north, knowing I can drop down into Panamint City for water without too much trouble. I will just have to do it later in the spring than my usual April, as I have lately found hiking in the cold not so fun.

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MojaveGeek
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Post by MojaveGeek » Sat May 20, 2017 2:31 pm

wbdeford wrote:
I assume you hate the mountain mahogany because it makes it difficult to get past some of them?
Yes, including crawling through them some times.

I think doing the whole crest would be stunning. Now I've not done that stretch from Sentinal to the divide between Hall and Surprise, but the part from there to Telescope is straightforward. There was even one camp site with a built up wall. Not the cake walk from Porter to Sentinal though.

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wbdeford
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Post by wbdeford » Sun May 21, 2017 11:24 am

MojaveGeek wrote:
wbdeford wrote:
I assume you hate the mountain mahogany because it makes it difficult to get past some of them?
Yes, including crawling through them some times.

I think doing the whole crest would be stunning. Now I've not done that stretch from Sentinal to the divide between Hall and Surprise, but the part from there to Telescope is straightforward. There was even one camp site with a built up wall. Not the cake walk from Porter to Sentinal though.
What I'm thinking, based on past plans that never happened, recent experience, and thoughts you've shared is, somewhere from mid-May to mid-June, with 1 goal being to only backtrack when unreasonable not to:

1) Park at Mahogany Flat and hike Telescope along the trail and continue to 10460. Cache some food at 10460.
2) Hike the Hall-Surprise divide to Canyon or Sourdough, and down to Panamint City.
3) Hike up to Hemlock mine, following Digonnett's plan over to Happy Canyon's upper springs.
4) Hike up to the Porter Mine, then follow the road down to Pleasant Canyon's upper water source there.
5) Hike the roads over to Middle Park, then South Park Canyon, and down to Colter Spring for a big water fill-up.
6) Hike back up to 35.9784N, 117.051W (which I consider to be the south end of the crest), overlooking Striped Butte.
7) Hike the crest north, with a drop down to Frenchman's Canyon for water, then back up to Panamint Pass.
8) Bypass the cliffs up from Panamint Pass until the crest can be safely resumed.
9) Hike the ridge down from Telescope instead of the trail.
10) Hike over Bennett and up Rogers.
11) Hike the ridge down from Rogers to Mahogany Flat.
12) Hike the ridge north from Mahogany Flat until it turns left toward Wildrose, picking up the trail where it meets the ridge.
13) Hike the rest of the Wildrose trail, then follow the ridge north to Bald Peak and on to 36.3102N, 117.0910W, which I consider to be the north end of the crest.
14) Hike back to Wildrose and take the trail to the kilns, and the road to Mahogany Flat.

This could all be done the other direction using Sourdough and not Water to get out of Panamint City, if the ridge from Sourdough to 10460 is safely hikable--thinking trying to come up Water Canyon would be too steep.

I think this could reasonably be done in about 7-10 days--7 for a person who likes to rush.

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