South Sisiter Loop to Bonanza, to Meet Alda

pics by Harlan W. S.
June 10, 2009

 

Alda B was visiting from Canada, before a trip on the Haute Route. I was supposed to meet her in Vegas at 9AM, but there proceeded a bizarre comedy of miscommunication. In the end I did meet Alda, at the place indicated on the map, and we chatted for a few hours… and somehow I forgot to take her picture.

 

The first part of the route, N up a very steep gully to South Sister, then WSW on a ridge to the Bonanza Trail, is trailless. This is not the normal way up South Sister. In the past I’ve saved a lot of time by just dropping directly down to the Old Mill Drainage, rather than travel on the Scout Canyon Road, but Alda and I wanted to talk. As mapped, the total route is 8.3 miles, with about 2500’ accumulated.

I made it up S Sister in 1h 3m, with a 4m stop to send a SPOT location message. Though it’s only ~2 miles by this short path, the elevation gain is ~1700’, and the going is slow in the last steep talus. When I’ve gone with a group, we’ve taken ~2 h.

 

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The gully I took up is a favorite

Buffet Boys descent.

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Tabulate corral fossil, much altered.

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This is a view looking up the final 40

talus slope. Pass through the low

point in the rock and turn L.

 

 

 

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This is the last class 3 chute to the top

(from an older trip). The only tricky part

is right above Steve’s head.

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View W and N; McFarland at L,

Mack’s in middle, N Sister at R.

 

 

 

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View E and S; Mummy at L, Charleston at R.

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The obscure peak in distance is the

highpoint of Amargosa Overlook

Ridge (where we were last week).

 

 

 

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Descending back down class 3,

Charleston in distance.

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Winkled Primrose.

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Impressive pile of horse crap

at low point between Sister and

Bonanza Trail.

 

 

 

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Vetch

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Flax

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Phlox

 

 

 

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Sage

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Now at Bonanza, here is view

back E to Sisters.

 

 

 

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View W to McFarland.

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Mummy.

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Almost back to the cars, the Sisters

loom above.