September 24th, 2008


The impressive Owens ValleyRest day! Which means it was still action packed, but just not as physically exerting. The same night I came down from Boundary Peak (enjoying views Owens Valley, Keough hot ditch in the morningthe deepest in the US with peaks rising 10,000′ on either side) I searched out Keough Hot Springs. I’d read that even though it’s a developed hot spring, just outside there are undeveloped sandy pools you can use for free. This was very true and I enjoyed relaxing alone in the warm water with a few beers. Very necessary after Half Dome and Boundary. It’s right off of the highway too. I recommend it to anyone headed through Bishop.

Hurd Peak by South LakeIn the morning I headed up to the Buttermilk boulders to do some climbing. I’d seen them in the movie King Lines and when I realized I’d be going right by them I decided to check them out. Since I’m travelling alone I hadn’t done any climbing yet, but you can boulder alone so I was really excited to put my gear to use. On my way out to the boulders I picked up a hiker who needed to get back on the trail. The trailhead was about ten miles past the boulders but I offered to take him up since it was my rest day. He was doing The Sierra Nevadassome kind of sweet cross-country hike (read: not on a trail like the PCT or John Muir) that was taking him three weeks, alone. He was all ultra-lite and had a weeks worth of food and everything in his pack and it still only weighted 30lbs. Pretty cool. He gave me huge bag of Balance bars and potato chips he said he bought to offer to people in exchange for a ride. Strange, but, it worked perfectly on me. The trailhead he wanted was up by South Lake and I’m glad I took him up there. It was beautiful, more so than usual even because the Aspens were starting to turn. Great spot for breakfast.

Autumn come to South Lake

After South Lake I found my way to the boulders. There weren’t too many people out there so it was nice not to be embarrassed by what a poor climber I am. :P The rocks were BAD ASS though. HUGE boulders, and no small number of them. All with the Sierra Nevada’s in the background. Awesome. I ran around the outcrops, climbed up all the easy boulders, played on some harder problems, and had fun trying to take pictures of myself with my new tripod. It was a great day and gave my legs a much needed break. Next up: the roof of the continental US, Mount Whitney!

Fun self portraitChalkSilhouette

Bouldering by BishopNeat outcrops by BishopI'm losing it

Dudes lower in the ButtermilksCrash Vandecoot by Buttermilks

Crazy rock

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