Day 7 - Below Stanton Pass to Twin Lakes (16 miles)
|Stanton Pass between Virginia and Stanton Peaks|
|Climbing to the pass|
|View northwest to Spiller Creek from pass. Whorl Mt (center) and Matterhorn Peak (right)|
Down, down, down
|Looking back up at the class 3 chutes|
|Susan didn't get through unscathed|
|Spiller Creek Canyon looking north toward Horse Creek Pass|
|Narrow notch at the head of Horse Creek Pass|
|Ice field below the pass. The pass is in the tiny notch on the right.|
|More giant talus|
We reach the Twin Lakes Resort campground in the late afternoon, the hundreds of 4th of July campers not looking too happy about having their holiday drenched. Navigating the campground roads we find the bridge across the creek and finally have our staged car in sight. On to Lee Vining for some real food!
This section of the incredible Sierra High Route challenged us quite a bit. Compared to the middle section we did last year, this was more difficult and occasionally frustrating. There was plenty of Type 2 fun on this one, that is certain. As much as we would have liked better weather, it could have been much worse as real snow fell over much of the route just a week later. The crazy weather continues... But, in any other than this severe drought year, even thinking about this route at the end of June would have you digging in the gear closet for the ice axe and crampons. This is normally an August route. We were fortunate to have the opportunity to do it when flowers were at absolute peak in the high country.
One more section to get, the southernmost - bring it on!
Tarns below Stanton Pass
Spiller Creek Canyon
Upper Horse Creek Canyon
Lower Horse Creek Canyon