Sierra Nevada - Sequoia National Park - High Sierra Trail 1957
Sequoia National Park 14 Jul 1957
Sequoia National Park 14 Jul 1957


This was the second half of my first Sierra Nevada trek which I took while I was in the Navy. I took a month's leave to do the two trips.

The first half was two weeks in Yosemite National Park.

At the end of the first two weeks I rode the Yosemite bus to Merced, then took the Greyhound bus to Tulare where I enjoyed a hotel room and received a mailed package of food and other supplies.

The Sequoia and Kings Canyon Company bus took me from Tulare to Giant Forest in Sequoia National Park where I spent three nights in a car campground while exploring the giant Sequoia trees and Crystal Cave which you can see here.

After completing the tour of Giant Forest, I headed out on a 76 mile backpack trip July 18-July 25, 1957 in Sequoia National Park on the High Sierra Trail which culminated in climbing 14,495' Mt. Whitney at the end of the trip on July 24, 1957.


High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957
High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957


High Sierra Trail - Gentle Ribbon Of Rock

The High Sierra Trail (HST) is a hiking trail in Sequoia National Park, California. The trail crosses the Sierra Nevada from west to east. Maps and trail profiles here.

From the plateau of the Giant Forest at Crescent Meadow (elevation 6,700') the trail travels high on the northern wall of the canyon of the Middle Fork of the Kaweah River to Bearpaw Meadow. This first 11.4 miles of the trail is a popular though strenuous two-day round trip hike. The Bearpaw Meadow High Sierra Camp (a simple tent hotel) located here dates back to 1934.

Leaving the meadow, the trail climbs through the Hamilton Lakes Basin to Kaweah Gap which, at 10,700 feet, is one of the lowest passes over the Great Western Divide within the park. From this pass, the route descends into Big Arroyo and then climbs to the Chagoopa Plateau, only to drop again to 6,700 feet in the Kern River Canyon.

After following along the Kern River, it turns east and climbs parallel to Wallace Creek to the junction with the John Muir Trail (JMT) and Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) 48.9 miles from Crescent Meadow. The HST now follows the JMT (and a portion of the PCT) 12.6 miles to the summit of Mount Whitney.

The Mount Whitney Trail branches to the east from the John Muir Trail 2.4 miles south of Mount Whitney's summit, and descends to Whitney Portal located at the end of the road from Lone Pine, California. From Crescent Meadow to Whitney Portal, the trail is 72.2 miles long.

In 1928, Sequoia National Park was expanded from the western section famous for the giant Sequoia Grove all the way to the Eastern Sierra and Mt. Whitney. At that point, park officials had to decide how to travel from West to East, as there were currently no trails or roads. The decision was made not to build roads, but instead to build a trail. This project – the High Sierra Trail – would be a grand five-year national project of incredible engineering and trail building…one of the last such projects ever.

It is incredibly well documented in the short video at the right done by a retired Sequoia National Park Ranger.

The High Sierra Trail has two great ascents – the first one over Kaweah Gap and the Great Western Divide, and the second over the Eastern Sierra and Trail Crest at Mt. Whitney. From the grandeur of Hamilton Lakes Basin and Precipice Lake, to the awe inspiring Big Arroyo and Kern River Valley, the High Sierra Trail is some of the best that Sequoia National Park has to offer. Then, the big finish where the High Sierra Trail, JMT and PCT all connect on the route up from Wallace Creek to Guitar Lake and Mt. Whitney gives all of the backpacking community a chance to come together in one grand finale!

High Sierra Trail Profile 1957
High Sierra Trail Profile 1957

My first day on the High Sierra Trail was a long 13 miles since I had to start from the campground in Giant Forest and hike 3 miles to the start of the trail at Crescent Meadow. This was a hot, buggy day along a mostly level trail with some ups and downs. The many side streams crossing the trail at this time of year were my salvation - at each one I dipped my head in the water to cool off and wash the bugs away. Rather than climb the last mile to Bear Paw Meadow camp, I made camp on top of a big flat rock under the bridge over Buck Creek.

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High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 1
High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 1
Crescent Meadow - Sequoia National Park NPS Photo
Crescent Meadow - Sequoia National Park NPS Photo
Great Western Divide from High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957
Great Western Divide from High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957

Castle Rock from High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957
Castle Rock from High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957
Rock formation near Panther Creek from High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957
Rock formation near Panther Creek from High Sierra Trail
Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957

Sugar Bowl Dome from High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957
Sugar Bowl Dome from High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957
Buck Canyon campsite on flat rock - Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957
Buck Canyon campsite on flat rock - Sequoia National Park 18 Jul 1957

The following day took me along a rugged trail to beautiful Hamilton Lakes. Yosemite had been fairly gentle country but now I was getting into the spectacular "rugged" Sierra. Camp near the sandy beach at the outlet of Hamilton Lake was very pleasant.

High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 2
High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 2
Sugar Pot Dome and Castle Rocks from High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
Sugar Pot Dome and Castle Rocks from High Sierra Trail
Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
Tent at Bearpaw Camp - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
Tent at Bearpaw Camp - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957

View up Hamilton Creek from above Bearpaw camp - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
View up Hamilton Creek from above Bearpaw camp - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
Water dripping along High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
Water dripping along High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957

View up Hamilton Creek toward Mount Stewart and Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
View up Hamilton Creek toward Mount Stewart and Kaweah Gap
Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
Eagle Scout Peak - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
Eagle Scout Peak - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957

Flowers and water along High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
Flowers and water along High Sierra Trail - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957

View up Lone Pine Creek over rocks scoured by spring runoff - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
View up Lone Pine Creek over rocks scoured by spring runoff
Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
View on way to Hamilton Lake - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
View on way to Hamilton Lake - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957

View toward Kaweah Gap from trail to Hamilton Lake - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
View toward Kaweah Gap from trail to Hamilton Lake - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
View of trail across canyon from above cascade - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
View of trail across canyon from above cascade - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957

Mount Stewart, Hamilton Lake and waterfalls - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957
Mount Stewart, Hamilton Lake and waterfalls - Sequoia National Park 19 Jul 1957

The next day, a long climb above Hamilton Lake took me over the Great Western Divide at Kaweah Gap and into the Big Arroyo.

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High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 3
High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 3
Hamilton Lake from Kaweah Gap trail - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Hamilton Lake from Kaweah Gap trail - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Waterfalls between lakes - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Waterfalls between lakes - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Lower Hamilton Lake from trail to Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Lower Hamilton Lake from trail to Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

Hamilton Lake from Kaweah Gap trail - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Hamilton Lake from Kaweah Gap trail - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Tunnels at difficulat trail building area - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Tunnels at difficulat trail building area - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

Hamilton Lake from Kaweah Gap trail - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Hamilton Lake from Kaweah Gap trail - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Lakes and Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Lakes and Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

First glimpse of first lake above Hamilton Lake, unknown fellow hiker - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
First glimpse of first lake above Hamilton Lake, unknown fellow hiker
Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Looking back from above lake - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Looking back from above lake - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

Me viewing ice covered 'cliff lake' - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Me viewing ice covered 'cliff lake' - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Scene at 'Cliff Lake', unknown fellow hiker - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Scene at 'Cliff Lake', unknown fellow hiker - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

Scene near top of Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Scene near top of Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Looking back down Kaweah Gap toward Hamilton Lake, unknown fellow hiker - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Looking back down Kaweah Gap toward Hamilton Lake, unknown fellow hiker
Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

Nine Lake Basin from Kaweah Gap, unknown fellow hiker - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Nine Lake Basin from Kaweah Gap, unknown fellow hiker
Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Black Kaweah Peak from Kaweah Gap, unknown fellow hiker - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Black Kaweah Peak from Kaweah Gap, unknown fellow hiker
Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

Mount Stewart from Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Mount Stewart from Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Eagle Scout Peak from Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Eagle Scout Peak from Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

View down Big Arroyo from Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
View down Big Arroyo from Kaweah Gap - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
View down Big Arroyo - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
View down Big Arroyo - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

At a trail junction in Big Arroyo there was an old Patrol Cabin which I and some other hikers utilized to get out of the rain. I was making such good time that I continued on up the north side to Moraine Lake on the Chagoopa Plateau. I sort of overestimated how well I was doing and ended up stumbling into camp in the dark through a maze of fallen logs - but in the morning, Moraine Lake was beautiful.

The route via Moraine Lake is a side trip that detours from the main High Sierra Trail route.

Water cascading into Big Arroyo - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Water cascading into Big Arroyo - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
'Red' Kaweah Peak and small lake at top of climb before dropping into Moraine Lake - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
'Red' Kaweah Peak and small lake at top of climb before dropping into Moraine Lake
Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

Chagoopa Plateau Meadow at trail junction 3 miles from Moraine Lake - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Chagoopa Plateau Meadow at trail junction 3 miles from Moraine Lake
Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Moraine Lake and Sawtooth Peak - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Moraine Lake and Sawtooth Peak - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

Moraine Lake, Black Kaweah, Red Kaweah, Kaweah Peak - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Moraine Lake, Black Kaweah, Red Kaweah, Kaweah Peak
Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Moraine Lake showing clear water, log 5' below surface - Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957
Moraine Lake showing clear water, log 5' below surface
Sequoia National Park 20 Jul 1957

After a late start the next morning, I proceeded past Sky Parlor Meadow and down a steep rocky trail into the Kern River Canyon. On this trail some small rocks rolled under my right foot and I managed to sprain my knee. It didn't bother me much for the next week as I continued my trek, but as soon as I returned to my desk and sat down, it went stiff as a pole and wouldn't bend for a week.

In the Kern River canyon I made camp at the Kern Hot Spring where I enjoyed a long hot soak in the concrete tub. A pole and canvas shelter kept the cold breezes off and only one other person was camped nearby.

High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 4
High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 4
Moraine Lake pasture - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957
Moraine Lake pasture - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957
Sky Parlor Meadow, Mount Kaweah - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957
Sky Parlor Meadow, Mount Kaweah - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957

Historic cabin at Sky Parlor Meadow - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1967
Historic cabin at Sky Parlor Meadow - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1967
Saytooth Peak and adjacent peaks across Sky Parlor Meadow - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957
Saytooth Peak and adjacent peaks across Sky Parlor Meadow
Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957

Looking down Kern Canyon from Morain Lake trail - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957
Looking down Kern Canyon from Morain Lake trail - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957
Hut at Kern Hot Spring on Kern River - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957
Hut at Kern Hot Spring on Kern River - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957
(which is now gone, replaced by a low fence for privacy)

Tub inside hut at Kern Hot Spring - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957
Tub inside hut at Kern Hot Spring - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957
Kern Hot Spring - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957
Kern Hot Spring - Sequoia National Park 21 Jul 1957

The hike up the Kern to Junction Meadow was through a deep forest on a sandy trail - the sand was tiring to walk in, but Junction Meadow was a pleasant campsite.

High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 5
High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 5
High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 5
High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 5

One of many waterfalls from Chagoopa Plateau into Kern Canyon - Sequoia National Park 22 Jul 1957
One of many waterfalls from Chagoopa Plateau into Kern Canyon
Sequoia National Park 22 Jul 1957
Jagged Kern Canyon walls - Sequoia National Park 22 Jul 1957
Jagged Kern Canyon walls - Sequoia National Park 22 Jul 1957

Raging current in Kern River - Sequoia National Park 22 Jul 1957
Raging current in Kern River - Sequoia National Park 22 Jul 1957

The trail then ascends alongside Wallace Creek where it offers excellent views down the Kern Canyon before arriving at the John Muir Trail where I ate lunch. The High Sierra and John Muir Trails now follow the same route to their end on top on Mt. Whitney. I plowed ahead - passing through Crabtree Meadows and made camp at Timberline Lake (now closed to camping).

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High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 6
High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 6
Upper Crabtree Meadow, Mt. Whitney, near Crabtree Ranger Station - 23 Jul 1957
Upper Crabtree Meadow, Mt. Whitney, near Crabtree Ranger Station - 230 Jul 1957
Hitchcock Lake from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957
Hitchcock Lake from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957

I spent an uncomfortably cold night at this high camp before taking an early start past the Hitchcock Lakes and up the Whitney trail to Trail Crest Pass and the final two and a half miles along the ridge trail to Mt. Whitney's summit - highest point in the 48 states.

High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 7
High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 7
Hitchcock Lake (left), Guitar Lake (right) from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957
Hitchcock Lake (left), Guitar Lake (right) from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957
East side view of Consultation Lake from Mount Whitney ridge trail - 24 Jul 1957
East side view of Consultation Lake from Mount Whitney ridge trail - 24 Jul 1957

Mt. Muir from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957
Mt. Muir from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957
Pointy Mt. McAdie (left center), Mt. Langley (center rear), Trail Crest and trail down east side from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957
Pointy Mt. McAdie (left center), Mt. Langley (center rear), Trail Crest and
trail down east side from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957

Pinnacles and top of Mount Whitney from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957
Pinnacles and top of Mount Whitney from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957

Mountain Mouse at Smithsonian Hut on top of Mount Whitney - built in 1909 - 24 Jul 1957
Mountain Mouse at Smithsonian Hut on top of Mount Whitney - built in 1909 - 24 Jul 1957
Hitchcock Lake view down west side of Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957
Hitchcock Lake view down west side of Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957

View east toward Owens Valley, Iceberg Lake from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957
View east toward Owens Valley, Iceberg Lake from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957
View down east side from Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957
View down east side from Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957

Panoramic view from top of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957

Panoramic view from top of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957

Starting on the left is the Owens Valley with the Inyo Mountains in the haze, the first peak is Lone Pine Peak, then Mt. Langley with the slope to its right and pointy Mt. McAdie to its right, Whitney Pass and Trail Crest to the right of Mt. McAdie, Olancha Peak in the distance, along the crest are Mt. Muir and Keeler Needle, massive Mt. Hitchcock with to its right Mt. Young, the Kern Canyon is evident next, behind the Smithsonian Hut is Mt. Kaweah (next to smoke stack) and the Kaweah Range to its right, then the Great Western Divide with Triple Divide Peak, Milestone Mountain, Table Mountain and the upper reaches of the Kern Canyon.

Plaque on top of Mt. Whitney. Note: Actual elevation currently is listed as 14,505'
Plaque on top of Mount Whitney. Note: Actual elevation currently is listed as 14,505'

Geodetic survey bench mark
Geodetic survey bench mark

Mount Whitney is the tallest mountain in the contiguous United States and the Sierra Nevada, with an elevation of 14,505 feet. It is located in East–Central California, on the boundary between California's Inyo and Tulare counties, 84.6 miles west-northwest of the lowest point in North America at Badwater Basin in Death Valley National Park at 282 feet below sea level.

The west slope of the mountain is in Sequoia National Park and the summit is the southern terminus of the John Muir Trail which runs 211.9 mi from Happy Isles in Yosemite Valley. The east slope is in the Inyo National Forest in Inyo County.

The estimated elevation of the summit of Mount Whitney has changed over the years. The technology of elevation measurement has become more refined and, more importantly, the vertical coordinate system has changed. The peak was commonly said to be at 14,494 ft and this is the elevation stamped on the USGS brass benchmark disk on the summit. An older plaque on the summit (sheet metal with black lettering on white enamel) reads "elevation 14,496.811 feet" but this was estimated using the older vertical datum (NGVD29) from 1929. Since then the shape of the Earth (the geoid) has been estimated more accurately. Using a new vertical datum established in 1988 (NAVD88) the benchmark is now estimated to be at 14,505 ft.

The summit of Mount Whitney is on the Sierra Crest and the Great Basin Divide. It lies near many of the highest peaks of the Sierra Nevada. The peak rises dramatically above the Owens Valley, sitting 10,778 feet or just over two miles above the town of Lone Pine 15 miles to the east, in the Owens Valley. It rises more gradually on the west side, lying only about 3,000 feet above the John Muir Trail at Guitar Lake.

The mountain is partially dome-shaped, with its famously jagged ridges extending to the sides. Mount Whitney is above the tree line and has an alpine climate and ecology. Very few plants grow near the summit: one example is the sky pilot, a cushion plant that grows low to the ground. The only animals are transient, such as the butterfly Parnassius phoebus and the gray-crowned rosy finch.

In July 1864, the members of the California Geological Survey named the peak after Josiah Whitney, the State Geologist of California and benefactor of the survey. During the same expedition, geologist Clarence King attempted to climb Whitney from its west side, but stopped just short. In 1871, King returned to climb what he believed to be Whitney, but having taken a different approach, he actually summited nearby Mount Langley.

Upon learning of his mistake in 1873, King finally completed his own first ascent of Whitney, but did so a month too late to claim the first recorded ascent. Just a month earlier, on August 18, 1873, Charles Begole, A. H. Johnson, and John Lucas, all of nearby Lone Pine, had become the first to reach the highest summit in the contiguous United States. As they climbed the mountain during a fishing trip to nearby Kern Canyon, they called the mountain Fisherman's Peak.

In 1881 Samuel Pierpont Langley, founder of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory remained for some time on the summit, making daily observations on the solar heat. Accompanying Langley in 1881 was another party consisting of Judge William B. Wallace of Visalia, W. A. Wright and Reverend Frederick Wales. Wallace later wrote in his memoirs that "The Pi Ute [Paiute] Indians called Mt. Whitney "Too-man-i-goo-yah," which means "the very old man." They believe that the Great Spirit who presides over the destiny of their people once had his home in that mountain." The spelling Too-man-i-goo-yah is a transliteration from the indigenous Paiute Mono language. Other variations are Too-man-go-yah and Tumanguya.

Iceberg Lake below the east face of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957
Iceberg Lake below the east face of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957
Town of Lone Pine in the trees, Lone Pine Creek from top of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957
Town of Lone Pine in the trees, Lone Pine Creek from top of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957

Lakes below top of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957
Lakes below top of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957
Mt. Hale and Wales Lake from top of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957
Mt. Hale and Wales Lake from top of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957

Hitchcock Lakes and Mt. Hitchcock from top of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957
Hitchcock Lakes and Mt. Hitchcock from top of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957
Jagged crest south of Mount Whitney, Mt. Langley, Mt. McAdie - 24 Jul 1957
Jagged crest south of Mount Whitney, Mt. Langley, Mt. McAdie - 24 Jul 1957

The precipitous views down both sides of the trail and of the nearby mountains were truly inspiring. They made a lasting impression. I spent quite a long time on top of Mt. Whitney, enjoying the views and taking pictures.

During this time I met Mr. Bill Paine from San Diego, who was leader of a group of Scouts who would soon become Explorer Post 360. This was a fateful meeting. On that day, we parted company as each went his own way. We both camped that night - after descending the many switchbacks - at Mirror Lake (now closed to camping).

Snow adjacent to the trail down east side of Mount Whitney from Trail Crest - 24 Jul 1957
Snow adjacent to the trail down east side of Mount Whitney from Trail Crest - 24 Jul 1957
Mt. Muir, Keeler Needle, Mount Whitney summit from trail descending from Trail Crest - 24 Jul 1957
Mt. Muir, Keeler Needle, Mount Whitney summit
from trail descending from Trail Crest - 24 Jul 1957

Snow on trail down east side of Mount Whitney from Trail Crest - 24 Jul 1957
Snow on trail down east side of Mount Whitney from Trail Crest - 24 Jul 1957
Switchbacks on trail down east side of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957
Switchbacks on trail down east side of Mount Whitney - 24 Jul 1957

Ice on the trail down from Trail Crest - 24 Jul 1957
Ice on the trail down from Trail Crest - 24 Jul 1957
Arc Pass, Consultation Lake from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957
Arc Pass, Consultation Lake from Mount Whitney Trail - 24 Jul 1957

We continued our acquaintance and the next day we arrived at Whitney Portal where we camped together. At Mirror Lake we had been awakened at 6 a.m. by a flash of light and loud boom echoing off the walls of Whitney as the U.S. exploded one of its last above ground nuclear blasts at the proving grounds in Nevada.

High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 8
High Sierra Trail 1957 Day 8
Looking back at Mount Whitney on way home - 25 Jul 1957
Looking back at Mount Whitney on way home - 25 Jul 1957
Looking back at Mount Whitney on way home - 25 Jul 1957
Looking back at Mount Whitney on way home - 25 Jul 1957

In the end, I rode back to San Diego with Bill Paine and his group. This was the beginning of a number of long friendships and my further involvement in the affairs of Explorer Post 360 - The Mountaineers.