Trip: Eastern Sierra 2021

My partner and I took the long weekend afternoon to take a trip out to the Eastern Sierra and Mono Lake .

We drove over U.S. 50 through the Caldor burn scar . I hadn’t seen the area since the summer when we went to {Wright’s lake}. It was not as devastating as I thought it’d be; many trees survived and the main damaged seemed to be the manzanita shrubs.

We drove over CA-89 and CA-88, then into Gardnerville, Nevada. Then south on U.S. 395 back into California, to Walker, CA where we stayed in a motel.

The next day we went for a hike to Secret Lake, up in the mountains a bit.

We then drove into Bridgeport, CA for some lunch. It’s amazing how little there is out there–like being someplace other than the coast again–there was one gas station in Bridgeport and nothing after that for a good hour or so. But it was $5.99 a gallon so the illusion of not being in California was brief.

After that it was on to Mono Lake.

The tufa formations were quite something. It made me want to go back to Utah and frolic in all the cool geology.

As we’d driven out to the lake I saw a sign for a crater nearby. Being equipped with an offroad vehicle, we ventured out down the dirt road to the Panum Crater as the sun set behind the mountains.

By the time we’d returned to the car it was pretty much dark, so we drove the hour back to the motel. The next morning we were off back to the bay.

A most excellent little trip. I’d love to go back in the summer and do some camping around this part of the state too. When we leave California I’ll miss this sort of diversity–being able to drive a few hours and ending up in a totally different environment is quite unique.