Tag Archives: winter

The quiet of the mountains

With all that’s going on in national politics and world news, it’s a welcome break to spend some time in the quiet of the winter mountains. The Sierra has been getting lots of snow this year, so it’s time to … Continue reading

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Sno-cone trees

The deep snows of January this year remind me of some winters at Montecito-Sequouia Lodge, where I lived and worked in the ski touring program. It lies at 7,200 feet elevation on the Generals Highway between Sequoia and Kings Canyon … Continue reading

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Temperature inversions

  In winter, cold, damp air settles in California’s Central Valley. A temperature inversion forms, with this cold, heavy air lying below drier, warmer air. It may condense as a layer of fog, hugging the ground or floating above. I grew up in the … Continue reading

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Blow, Mountain Wind!

Sometimes when recently-fallen snow lies soft and loose on the slopes and high peaks, a broad, wild, gusty wind blows across the mountains from east to west, opposite the normal direction. Pressure gradients have shifted, and the range is enveloped in a river … Continue reading

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Winter views

When the snow is on the ground, make your way to an open ridgetop. There, the high divides stretch across your view. Long slopes, which in summer would be talus slopes, rock slabs and pocket meadows, now are broad, graceful expanses … Continue reading

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Silence of the snowy forest

In the snowy winter forests of the Sierra there is a sense of quiet and peace. Sound is absorbed and muffled by the snow. I have often stood on a snowy overlook and soaked in this silence and peace. The silence … Continue reading

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Winter has come to the mountains!

Winter has come to the Sierra. Storm after storm has piled up snow, transforming the larger rocks and logs into smooth, graceful curves. Snow drapes over saplings, completely coating them and even temporarily bending some over more than 180 degrees. They’ll spring … Continue reading

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