White Mountain Peak
By: Hugh Parshall
20 CLIMBERS MAKE WHITE MTN. WITH DPS, BATTLE STORM ON DESERT,
Bob Bear and I led a party of 20 on the White Mtn. climb Sunday, June 7th. Getting an early start, we reached the top of our highest desert peak about 10:30 AM. The weather was windy and partly cloudy on the way up. With the clouds getting thicker as we started down, it started snowing at about the l3,000-foot level and soon we were in a blizzard, with strong winds and driving snow. We estimated the temperature at about 20 degrees above and the wind velocity as high as 40 miles at one time. The wind died down after blowing for about half an hour, but the snow continued off and on and was accompanied by thunder on our two hour trip back to the cars. It was still snowing as we drove back to camp at the Patriarch Grove of Bristlecone Pines, where we reported our trip to the ranger. He had come to check with us when he learned that it was snowing on White Mtn.
The view of the Sierra across (Owens Valley was beautiful add we witnessed the clouds gather there and drop their load of snow.
42 persons gathered for lunch at Shulman Grove Saturday noon; The 22 not climbing the peak came either to see the ancient bristlecone pines (4600 years old) or suffered from altitude sickness and went home early. A few climbed Sheep Mountain instead of White Sunday morning, as they felt they were not in condition for the 14,242' peak.
This makes the third time this year for me that I have run into snow on a peak that I have led or assisted - Orocopia, Tucki, White. I'm beginning to think a dark cloud is following me.
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