The Eastern Sierra.
I don't know if they are less well known, harder to get to, or I was just oblivious, but while I've driven past the majestic peaks numerous times - on my way to and from Death Valley - I've never really taken the time to explore the mountain range that boasts the tallest peak (Mt. Whitney, at 14,505 feet) in the contiguous United States.
But, over the last few years - as I've ventured into the Volcanic Tablelands, and here and there within the Owens Valley - I've reveled in the rocky faces and snowy peaks. Now, finally, we'd get a chance to explore - climbing to elevations of more than 12,000 feet - as we lake hop in the Eastern Sierra.
Coyote Flat via Big Pine Route | Eastern Sierra #1 - The Eastern Sierra. I don't know if they are less well known, harder to get to, or I was just oblivious, but while I've driven past the majestic peaks numerous times - on my way to and from Death Valley - I've never really taken the time to explore the… Coyote Flat via Bishop Route | Eastern Sierra #2 - Our night below the The Hunchback couldn't have been more pleasant. Though we were at 10,500-feet, temperatures never dropped below the mid-40s °F, and even getting up for a bathroom break and some less-than-mediocre star photos was an enjoyable few minutes. Unlike the previous morning when I hadn't set my… They Built a Road to the Sky | Eastern Sierra #3 - We awoke on the third morning of our trip, full of anticipation. Or at least, full of something that starts with an "a." Perhaps apprehension. Whatever it was, we knew we needed to get an early start on our day, and so were down the ladder before the sun rose… A Quick Jaunt to Laurel Lakes | Eastern Sierra #4 - We arrived at the Laurel Lakes trailhead just after 9:15am on a Sunday morning. Aware that this was a reasonably well-known destination, we were a little worried that the trail - and lakes themselves - would be crowded. On the flip side, I knew that portions of it were considered…