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2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

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2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby Bob Burd » Tue Apr 17, 2012 8:26 pm

Spring has arrived, the Sierra snows are now melting in earnest with fair weather ahead, the passes are starting to open and thoughts naturally turn to What to Do in the Sierra this Summer. The Sierra Challenge is set for mid-August when most of the snows have melted, the mosquitoes have had their run, water is plentiful as is sunshine and plenty of daylight hours. 10 new peaks have been selected for the 2012 event. We're going to visit Northern Yosemite, the Minarets, the Evolution Region, the Palisades, and four of the toughest trails on the East Side - Taboose and Shepherd Passes, along with two never used during the Challenge - Sawmill Pass and George Creek.

The all-new 2012 Sierra Challenge gives you ten days in August to challenge your stamina and your sanity amidst the beauty that is the Sierra Nevada. Leave your heavy backpacks and marginal camp foods behind. Climb some impressive peaks with a daypack and enjoy fine Eastern Sierra cuisine at day's end. Join us for one day or all ten, to test your legs in the backcountry or just to meet fellow SPers. We already have a handful of folks signed up this year, always room for more. :D

For those who aren't familiar with the yearly Challenge, in a nutshell - we drive up and down the Eastern Sierra for ten days and climb 1-2 cool peaks each day. Mostly carrying a light daypack, sometimes crampons/axe. It's primarily a hike/scramble event, with little technical rock climbing. It's generally a pretty exhausting day, but most participants would use the word "fun" somewhere in their varying descriptions. This is not a race, there are no official sponsors, and there are no prizes. There are no qualifications to join in the fun - everyone is welcome. The link above will give you all the info.

Adam and Ephrat near Lamarck Col, Day 6 of the 2011 Challenge:
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby ScottHanson » Wed Apr 18, 2012 4:24 am

Thanks Bob, for once again offering this unique experience to see the Sierra. This will be my eight year joining Bob's Sierra Challenge. I have had various degrees of futility and success in the past seven years, but always fun hanging out with a great group of people hiking and climbing. Bob sets up this event to allow a wide variety of physical and technical skills from participants. Just have fun and stay safe. It's a diverse group of returnees and first timers. To much fun to miss. I better ramp up my training now.
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby Princess Buttercup » Wed Apr 18, 2012 4:58 am

Mmmmm...

Slogulicious... :twisted:
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby Bob Burd » Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:56 am

Mmmm ... tinned fish in the Minarets - alpine cuisine at its finest. If you haven't made plans, the Sierra Challenge starts in three weeks and it's never too late to sign up. Come join the fun!

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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby dskoon » Tue Jul 24, 2012 3:23 pm

Bob Burd wrote:Mmmm ... tinned fish in the Minarets - alpine cuisine at its finest. If you haven't made plans, the Sierra Challenge starts in three weeks and it's never too late to sign up. Come join the fun!

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Looks Great!
Wish I could go. For all those who can, have fun!!
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby Bob Burd » Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:29 pm

A little warm over here on the East Side at the moment. 92F in Bridgeport, so we're taking advantage of free wifi and AC at the Bridgeport Library. Weather for the coming week looks pretty good, with only 20% change of isolated thunderstorms.

I spent yesterday by myself tagging the peaks around Highland Lakes off SR4 - Hiram, Airola, Iceberg, Arnot & Folgers. Nice weather, a tad warm, some smoke from a fire near Spicer Reservoir. Hiram, Airola and Arnot appear to be climbed fairly regularly judging from the large number of register entries. As is the whole region, the peaks are all volcanic in origin and mostly large talus piles, but the views and the traverses along the ridges are worthwhile.

Sean, Laura and Tom joined me in Nevada for an easy hike of Bald Mtn (a P2K) NE of Bridgeport. Great views of the Sweetwater Range to the west, the PIne Nuts to the north, Mt. Grant and a whole host of other ranges I can only guess at to the east.

Tomorrow we'll start of the Sierra Challenge at Twin Lakes for a climb of Eocene Peak. We have about 30 folks signed up to join us starting at 6am. If you're in the area and looking for something to do, feel free to join us.
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby Kahuna » Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:40 pm

Be careful this weekend. 20% can mean potential troublesome lightning as you well know Bob. All three of them fires currently burning around Mono and Glass Mtn were from lightning strikes late yesterday afternoon. 20% was the forecast as well for yesterday.

On my ride home yesterday eve from Bishop to my home 14 miles north of Bishop, around sixish PM, I counted over 40 strikes from Glass Mountain Ridge down to and on the center portion of the Wheeler Crest. The day prior was only 10% and there was a Super Cell that extended from Williamson north to my home with intense lightning all around the Pals north to the Wheeler Crest.
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby Princess Buttercup » Thu Aug 09, 2012 11:03 pm

Bridgeport library is pah-tee central!!

Can't wait to see everyone out this coming week!
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby Bob Burd » Sat Aug 11, 2012 12:07 am

Day 1 - Eocene Peak

Eocene peak lies at the far west end of the Sawtooth Ridge on the northern boundary of Yosemite. Unofficially named, it's neither technically difficult nor a very long hike to reach - but it lies in a spectacularly scenic area and makes for a good warm up day. We had 28 at the Mono Village parking lot at 6am this morning, almost all heading to Eocene Peak. Sean had run off to Whorl in Matterhorn (in a most respectable time of 7h45m) while the rest of us headed up Blacksmith Canyon. It was the first time all of us had been up this canyon - it starts right from the campground and goes up some 4,000ft in 4.5mi, steep indeed. There was some semblences of use and animal trail in the canyon, but fortunately the bushwhacking is minimal. There 13 of us at the summit not long after 9am. Most of those headed down the west side of the peak to Little Slide Canyon to make a nice loop. We encountered some class 3 cliffs on that side by not taking the easier ridge route, but it made for a nice descent to Ice Lake. From there eight of us went up to Kettle Peak for the bonus, the others continuing down Little Slide Canyon. Kettle Peak (which has a recent SP page) was unexpectedly fun thanks to a good ramp leading up from the south and some nice scrambling to the summit rocks.

Pat(ricia), Bob Jones, and Kevin were the first back to the trailhead with a time of 6h30m. The next closest was nearly an hour later. Those three are currently vying for the yellow jersey honors. There were still a number of folks out on the trail before I left to return to Bridgeport. More updates tomorrow, but I think we may have gotten more than 20 folks to the summit of Eocene on the first day, easily smashing the old record. The weather was superb. Some clouds, but never threatening.

Tomorrow we'll head to Agnews Meadow for a shot at Leonard Minaret and some other summits in the area. The stats sheet has been updated for those interested.

I took a number of photos but forgot to bring the USB cable with me for downloads. If anyone out there today can supplement this with a few pics, it would be most appreciated.
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby BHunewill » Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:40 am

I have been curious about Eocene for years now. I can't wait to see your photos. Sadly I was horseback all day and missed getting to go on this one. :(
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby seano » Sat Aug 11, 2012 3:37 am

As usual, I'll be writing about each day on my weblog. And after today, I'll even be hiking with other people!
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby Bob Burd » Sat Aug 11, 2012 3:42 am

BHunewill wrote:I have been curious about Eocene for years now. I can't wait to see your photos. Sadly I was horseback all day and missed getting to go on this one. :(


We found the register that you left earlier in the season on Kettle. Brian French had found it a few weeks ago and kindly carried it up to the highpoint.
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby SeanReedy » Sat Aug 11, 2012 3:47 am

My last good hike was from Twin Lakes exactly a week ago. Ya'll are making me jealous, especially with a heat wave down low where I am. Have a spectacular time!
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby BHunewill » Sat Aug 11, 2012 4:49 am

We found the register that you left earlier in the season on Kettle. Brian French had found it a few weeks ago and kindly carried it up to the highpoint.


That's great. Brian was a cook on our ranch years ago and I see his name in registers all over. I have never made such a dumb register entry as I did on the box I put on Kettle! It was a super hot day and we got a late start. Turns out the summit is easy after all.
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Re: 2012 Sierra Challenge Aug 10-19

Postby Daria » Sat Aug 11, 2012 10:49 am

most excellent start to a great yearly event. Sorry I couldn't make it this year as I am tied up in Europe, but will definitely be around for it next summer!

good luck to the participants.
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