Eastern Sierras 4th of July weekend trip, 2013. Day 1.
Day 1 (well day 0 and day 1).
Petaluma to Alpine Lake
Alpine Lake to Topaz Lake, to Mt Patterson, to Masonic Ghost town, to Lake Leavitt.
Left work on wednesday night, and made it through to Alpine Lake on hwy 4 (which is incredible with its single windy lane). Warm until late (like 88 at 9pm). Camped in the parking lot and got going early the next day. Headed further east and summited Leviathan Peak, taking in a look at the look out tower. Took a dirt road down a steep and loose decent before landing in Topaz. Fueled up with coffee and gas and headed south to take on Mt Patterson. Went up the west side which was pretty straight forward. Hard climb but the bike did all the work. Some loose, steep and techy sections. Lots of fun, especially on a loaded bike. Summited around 11am, and took some pictures before being chased off by threatening thunder clouds. Didnt really want to get caught out up top. Quick decent down the eastern side which is a lot longer then the west side.
Back on the main road, I headed to Bridgeport to fuel up and figure the route out to Masonic ghost town. Mostly easy flowy dirt roads lead to an abandoned and well shot up site. Pretty neat but small and not well kept like Bodie. Good to check off the list though. Back to Bridgeport and then up hwy 108 to Lake Leavitt to visit some friends and camp out. The road up to Leavitt is a somewhat technical climb and would only suit high clearance vehicles. There is no sign post for the lake. Passed a bunch of hikers on the way up and there were quite a few campers spread around the lake. John and Cary arrived an hour later and we all set up around a Bristlecone Pine making dinner and swapping stories. Pretty amazing site, with the lake all surrounded by mountains. The sunset was quite a show too. Glad to have been able to hang out with the Sweeneys for a night in the wilderness after talking about it for so long.