Keynot in CA Inyos (1.95x) and Corkscrew in Death Valley (4x)

Exactly 4 years before, I was part of a large, friendly group attempting to climb Keynot and Inyo Peaks,  We were turned back on Keynot, just shy of the top, by 1' of powder snow on steeply-sloped ice and frozen dirt.

So 4 years later, I tried a quick solo to Keynot.  There was much less snow, though there was frozen ground. I made the 6000' of gain to the summit in 4h 20m, in much safer conditions. Yet I wouldn't trade the 2010 experience for the world; I met great people and learned how to deal with dicey conditions, and most of all, learned to make an important decision: to live and keep others alive.

I met a nice wildlife biologist Mike on the 2014 trip, and he later helped me change a flat.

I was a bit more cautious wth my new car after the flat, so I stayed in Lone Pine and had dinner with my kind friend Laura. Next day I drove to Death Valley, camped at Furnace Creek, and got to join another friend, Paul, for a DPS list-finish trip to Corkscrew.

Harlan W S

Oct 30 and Nov 2, 2014

On Oct 29, I drove up to about 5200'
on Keynot, to familiarize myself with
the route I would drive (in the dark)
the next morn.
I parked at the same place I had stopped
in 2010, travelling then in my 2003
Subaru Wagon; but the road had
since deterorated, so even though I
now had a Jeep Trailhawk, I decided I
was not yet familiar enough with the
new car to risk the last 1/4 mile...
...which was pretty crappy!  The next
morn I parked the same place, but
pulled farther off the road to allow
another fellow to park... and ran
over a cactus that punctured a
I came up the ridge S of Union Wash;
this view is from ~8000', W to the Sierra.
4 years before, the Sierra were
 much snowier.
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Now I'm on the ridge between
Keynot and Inyo, headng S. I cached
20 oz water between the peaks.
A view S to Keynot.  There is a rough,
 rocky section of the ridge, where one
normally raverses on the E side to
avoid technial climbs.
View N from the summit.
View S to NY Butte.
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View SW over possible highest
point. I looked all around for a register,
but it seems to have gon missing.
Selfie, while I try to hold onto my
hat in the wind.
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The snow was mainly inconvenient,
 but my occasional slips made me
 realize how wise we were to turn
back 4 years before.
Down below 9300'.
Over to the S is a scree ridge one can
"ski" down; unfortunately, it didn't
lead back to my car!
Next day I had a leisurely drive to
DV (Death Valley); I might have
climbed Manly Beacon, except it
was 93F!
I had a good spot at Furnace Creek,
except there were very noisy people
nearby at 2AM! This has happened
on 4 nights at that camground,
but earplugs have saved he night!
The group was large, maybe 40, so we
split into 2 subgroups. My group went
up the pleasant, eastern use tail.
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Corkscrew in sight!
Jen tests the rules for SC 'S" rating.
On top!
View toward Thimble. Mark and Craig
bent over in a split second, so I
got this ambiguous shot.
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View S.
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Bighorn sheep near the road.
It snowed on higher ridges the night
 of Nov 1-2, and Telescope Peak
was coated in white by morn.