Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Hogback Creek

I had not planned on skiing today, but I went to bed pretty early, woke up really early, so I figured why not?

The Hogback drainage is the next major drainage north of Lone Pine Creek (Whitney Portal).

It is seldom visited since it does not lead to any passes, is not a good route to any peaks, and has no sizeable lakes for fishing. Yet it is a fantastic place with rugged gorges, towering cliffs, and huge vertical relief.

This is one of the several fine gully systems in the drainage.
The road to the mouth of the canyon is currently passable almost to its end. After the road end it is imperative to attain a small ridge which divides the south fork from the main stem of Hogback Creek.

After 40 minutes or so of hiking - which was largely pleasant with a little postholing and bushwhacking - it was time to ski.

Skinned for 20 minutes or so in this kind of terrain.
Before things opened up.

The south fork drainage.
The rugged gorge of the north fork.
I reached my high point, a nice saddle at around 9250', and enjoyed these views.

This sweet little corn run skied very nicely
This is probably the worst section of the ridge hike.
Back to the truck in three hours plus!
A great adventure.

Hogback is truly an amazing place.
I hope to come back soon with more time.

Seems like the corn skiing on the south to southeast aspects is real nice right now. Even skis well before it softens. Sunny aspects were plenty fun even at 8:30am!

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