Glacier Ridge via Tablelands

Glacier Ridge is a massive granitic formation separating Deadman Canyon and Cloud Canyon, two spectacular glacial canyons with a signature U-shape.  The ridge spans an impressive 8 miles and towers over 4,000 feet above the canyon bottoms.  The high point along the ridge is 1.4 miles north of Copper Mine Pass Peak and provides arguably…

Mount Baldwin & Convict Canyon

Mount Baldwin is located in arguably the most geographically fascinating region of the High Sierra. McGee Creek and Convict Creek canyons wrap around the peak and each watershed is surrounded by colorful peaks including bands of brilliant red, white and gray rock. Mount Baldwin makes a strong impression when driving along 395 and especially along the…

Maclure High Route

Often times the best scenery in the Sierra is found between the canyon or valley bottom and the craggy ridge crests.  The Sierra High Route is perhaps the best example of this straddling the sweet spot between the montane forest and the more arduous travel characteristic of the ridgelines.  This post describes a much shorter…

Sea to Sky to Valley and Back: Stone Memorial Loop

Silver Lupine, Stone Ridge and Cone Peak The Stone Ridge Sea to Sky is a classic Big Sur route from the Pacific Ocean to the summit of Cone Peak ascending over 5,000 feet in a little over 5 miles. The Carrizo Trail combined with the North Ridge is the interior version of Stone Ridge Sea…

Return to Ventana Double Cone

With the unreasonably long closure post-Soberanes Fire finally over, it was time to return to Ventana Double Cone.  If Cone Peak is the King of the Big Sur Coast, Ventana Double Cone is the Queen of the Ventana Wilderness. Rising 4,853 ft above sea level, no other peak in the Ventana Wilderness possesses such a rugged face…

Mount Andrea Lawrence

Mount Andrea Lawrence was named in 2013 when President Obama signed into law legislation officially naming this beautiful summit in honor of Olympian and environmentalist Andrea Mead Lawrence.  Prior to the official naming, the 12,245 ft mountain was sometimes known as “Gem Peak” as evidenced by the cover of an older summit register.  The mountain is taller,…

Hooper Senger Loop

The Hooper Senger Loop is an aesthetic 27.6 mile complete loop in a scenic region of the High Sierra including carry-overs of Mount Senger and Mount Hooper.  Since the region is well west of the crest, the topography and summits are not high relative to the crest, but the views are spectacular and the large…

Red and White Mountain

Some of the most interesting and colorful geology in the Sierra lies in a region centered in the Convict Creek and McGee Creek watersheds.  The mountains here are composed of brilliant red, white and gray rocks, a stark contrast to the familiar granite that composes most of the Sierra.  Instead of the solid nature of…

Ritter Loop

Mount Ritter is the centerpiece peak of the Ansel Adams Wilderness, and at 13,150 ft, it’s also the highest peak in the region with a commanding view of the surrounding landscape. Together with its close neighbor Mount Banner, the two peaks are visible from virtually anywhere in the Ansel Adams Wilderness and are a familiar…

Mount Gardiner

Centrally located in Kings Canyon National Park, 12,907 ft Mount Gardiner has one of the most beautiful northern aspects in the High Sierra.  The many buttresses and cliffs of this north side tower above Gardiner Basin which contains over a dozen pristine alpine lakes ranging from treeline elevations up to desolate rockbound bodies of water….