Mile: 721.5 to 741.8
up/down: 3300/3200 feet
It's been a while since we spent much time at high altitude and that was painfully obvious today with a noticeable struggle to keep it moving forward. The entire day was spent going up and down between 9000 and 10600 feet elevation with two big climbs to test us.
We left camp at Cow Creek and continued the ascent toward Olancha Peak topping out at 10600 before descending into Death Canyon (sounds ominous!) and crossing the creek for our first water of the day at 10 miles. We are still in the relatively dry southern Sierra and water continues to control what we do. The next source was 10 more miles so another 20 miler was the order of the day. We climbed out of Death Canyon reaching 10600 again before a long traverse along the crest. We even dipped into the east side occasionally and had views of the Owens Valley and Owens Lake. Our final destination was the small meadows along Diaz Creek just east of the crest. For those of you that live in the Owens Valley, this creek feeds into Cottonwood Creek before tumbling off the mountain to the Cottonwood Power Plant.
Looking south toward Monache Meadow
Olancha Peak across Death Canyon
Diaz Creek and Meadow
It looks like tomorrow will be another long day with widely spaced water sources.