Silver Peak

11-Sept-04

By: Tina Bowman


We had a group of six ready to go from the Devilís Bathtub trailhead parking and camping area at 6:30 Saturday morning: Jim Adler, Daryn Dodge, Yim Lincoln, Susan and Bill Livingston, and me. We were lucky that Jim was willing to be the assistant leader since Tom, my husband, had been having back trouble and didnít think he should go on the trip. Thanks, Jim! With gorgeous weather we had a good hike up to the Devilís Bathtub where we set up camp. We saw some cattle and certainly heard them in the Twin Meadows area; one small calf kept looking behind at us as he followed his mother up the trail. We got to the lake by 8:45, set up camp, and headed for Silver Peak at 9:3 0. There are many fine campsites at the south end of the lakeónice open forest, flat areas, well back from the water. Some others were camped on the west side of the outlet; we went to the east side.

The trail on the east side of the lake gave way to use trail and animal trails and then easy cross-country in the meadows above. I took us a bit far left and maybe about fifty feet too high as we climbed in the cirque because I wasnít paying enough attention to the map, but it was at least pretty easy going. After lunch at one of the two tams not too far below Pass 11,240+ (as described by R. J.), we went to the pass, dropped down, and traversed to the southeast ridge of Silver. Whereas the going was mostly pretty easy on the south side of the pass, on the north it was a different story: a loose, steep north face of the pass to go down; talus to traverse; talus and stunted trees on the ridge to the summit to Silver. Jim was feeling his two hoursí sleep, and Yim was feeling some of the altitude and roughness of the terrain. They returned to the pass to await the other four of us who summited but suffered the disappointment of not finding a summit register, no container, no book. From the top we also watched the growing mushroom of smoke from a forest fire to the west. Back we went and regrouped at the pass at 5:00 and tumbled into camp a few minutes after 7:00 after a day of over 5900í gain per my Avocet altimeter. We gathered for dinner but elected not to have a campfire, which would have been legal at that elevation. It had been a long day.

Sunday morning we were on our way back to the cars before 7:30 and there just before 9:00. Since the drive out to Fresno from Lake Edison takes about three hours, we were glad to be out early and have time for swimming (Susan and Bill in Lake Edison), visiting old haunts (Yim in Fresno, where she lived for eight years), or just head on home. And so another trip with great people ended.

Happy trails!


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