Spanish Needle & East aka Beast Lamont

April 29th, 2018
Spanish Needle (7,841)
East Lamont Peak (7,475')
11.90 miles, 3,500'
[Pics] [CalTopo] [Map]

Spanish Needle is located in the southern Sierra a short distance north of Walker Pass.  It's biggest claim to fame is both it's route finding difficulty and the fact it's one of the rare significant 3rd class scramble peaks.  It's also notorious for people underestimating the difficulty and either turning back or getting to the wrong peak.

I first did the peak way back in 2010 and it took my two tries with the initial attempt ending with me climbing up to the ridge too early and cliffing out with not enough daylight left to reroute.  It's been led a few times by Sierra Club groups in recent years to varying degrees of success and I decided it was about time to head back out and see how it compared with what I remembered.

Dyadic Point & Spectre Peak M-Rock Provisional Backpack Coxcomb Mountains

April 14th & 15th, 2018
Dyadic Point (4,360')
Spectre Peak (4,482')
Day 1: 5.9 miles, 1,300'
Day 2: 10.5 miles, 2,000'
[Pics] [CalTopo] [Map]

If you follow my blog and Dyadic sounds somewhat familiar that's probably because I just did it as a dayhike back in January.  At the time I had no plans to repeat it so soon but then I was approached to evaluate a Sierra Club M provisional (aka 3rd class rock trip) up there on one of the rare weekends I happened to have open.

This time around instead of a dayhike it would be a backpack.  Unfortunately since there's no water back there you have to carry enough to last you for both days plus a fudge factor and it has a tendency to get warm out there this time of year.  On the plus side the plan was to approach via the route I'd previously descended so at least it would feel a bit different.  And finally I was interested to get another look at the route on Dyadic now that I knew more what to expect.

Alabama Hills Rock Climbing Weekend For Wilderness Travel Course Alumni

April 7th & 8th, 2018
Paul's Paradise
Hillbilly Pillar
The Tall Wall
The Sharks Fin
[Pics] [Map]

One of the things I've always commented on about WTC is that is that the course is amazing but once someone finishes the class, does their experience trips, and graduates we often do a bad job of staying in contact.  Some individuals return year after year for trips but there's always a limit to the number of trips we lead and spaces on permits so I've always wanted to put together something low key where everyone could come back together.

Hence this weekend.  I've done climbing weekends like this in the past but always at a smaller scale.  This time invites went to area staff, current and former students, and a smattering of people outside of Orange County leading to around 50 people driving out to Alabama Hills in the Eastern Sierra.

Of course we planned this shindig back in the December / January timeframe when all we knew weather wise was the average temperatures for the area. And then when the dates drew near we found we had a slight complication...