5 SUPER HIKING EVENTS UP NEAR DEATH VALLEY AND OWENS VALLEY, ABOUT 200 MILES AWAY. ALL ARE PRETTY EASY BY MY STANDARDS AND FEATURE MY USUAL MONKEYING AROUND (ROCK SCRAMBLING) AND ARE SUPER SCENIC.
NOTE: I AM PUTTING A LIMIT ON ATTENDANCE ON THIS EVENT, BUT I HAVEN'T DECIDED HOW SMALL, MAYBE 30-ish MAX. SO RSVP NOW, PLEASE, AND GET ON THE WAITING LIST AND I'LL UPDATE BY MONDAY THE 14TH
You've probably all heard of the legendary Tar creek waterfalls which are closed to the public in the Los Padres National Forest, all to protect that weird looking Condor bird. The last time i took friends there, we stayed 8 hours swimming, cliff jumping, sliding down chutes. The downside was that a third of the group got injured or banged up. Now, there is a ticket writing forest ranger keeping funseekers away.
Darwin Falls (the upper ones) in Death Valley National Park are nearly as cool, super photogenic, and a lot easier to hike to. The hike is three miles round trip. The hike to the first 20 foot falls is easy, and to the upper series of falls, slides and pools, including the amazing 50 footer, the difficulty is intermediate (elevation gain of 100 feet). LOTS OF OPPORTUNITIES TO GET WET! (and the parking lot is reached by a three mile drive on a dirt road 1 mile west of Panamint Springs resort. The dirt road is suitable for all cars.) And the hike is on a trail--not bouldering, which was the cause of so many bruises at Tar creek.
more info and photos:
DARWIN FALLS IS #3 IN A WEEKEND OF EVENTS 200 MILES NORTH OF L.A.
YOU CAN DO ALL 5 OR AS MANY AS YOU CAN TAKE (and I can be pretty hard to take, at times...)
MY PHOTOS OF ALL 5 EVENTS: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10209293742687592.1073741902.1443226944&type=1&l=238b2b0b3f
For Flower and waterfall fanatics.... the trip leaves Saturday morning, March 19 at sunrise, (leave L.A. by 7:30), and returns Sunday night, March 20TH around 10.
ON SATURDAY, we will:
--pass through the weird old mining town called Randsburg,
--then climb around on the Trona Pinnacles starting around 10:30, (5 mile drive on a dirt road, suitable for all cars.) Hike is easy and as long as we feel like doing.
--have lunch at Esparza Restaurant in Trona, a truly bizarre looking mining town surrounding a dry lake which is covered in salt deposits --then pass flower fields in the Searles and Panamint Valley for photo ops,
--ending with Darwin falls from 3 to 6 PM on Saturday. BRING SHOES AND CLOTHES YOU CAN GET WET
We will stay overnight in Lone Pine, (you need to book your own hideout).....
The town is small, and has three bars, and at least one with live music a short walk from the hotels. (so you can easily stagger back to your hotel room...no car required)
THEN ON SUNDAY:
--play bean the hike leader with a snowball at Whitney Portal, (ten mile drive from Lone Pine)
--then explore Alabama Hills' arches trail, (2 MILES, AND EASY)
--late lunch in Lone Pine
--drive north one hour to take a dip in the Keough hot springs free pools, then play at Fossil Falls on the way home.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner plans will be added soon
HOTEL INFO IN LONE PINE:
--Portal Hostel: $25 a person (10 per room)[masked]
$55 in historic hotel without private bath, $70 to $79 in newer building with your own bathroom, plus 12% room tax. [masked].
--other hotel-motels are $80 to $100