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Gorgonio

Gorgonio

Yes, there is snow on Gorgonio's north face—but if you want it you'll have to work for it. Things were melted out all the way up to about 9400' yesterday, meaning you'll (more)

Mount Islip

Mount Islip

The easy snow along Highway 2's Waterman Crest is all but gone now, melted out by late April's furious heat waves. That said, what a treasure this part of the San Gabriels is, (more)

Vail, All These Years Later

Vail, All These Years Later

Originally an unnamed Colorado sheep hill near the training grounds for the US Army's 10th Mountain Division, Vail was born in winter 1957 when hunter, prospector, and skier (more)

Christmas Snow

Christmas Snow

We were just about to head to the car yesterday when they suddenly opened Chair 23. A mad every-man-for-themselves dash later, Al and I flashed through an empty maze and (more)

My Dreams of Vail

My Dreams of Vail

I have a number of recurring skiing dreams, all of which start happening around this time of year. The best involves me skiing down and disconnecting from the snow and pulling (more)

Return to Dana

Solstice Couloir - Mount Dana

With Tioga Pass Road now open to the east Yosemite gate (and intermittently all the way through to the Central Valley), this past weekend seemed like the perfect time to (more)

Mountain High East

Mountain High East

I knew I loved to ski Mountain High East, but I had forgotten why: MHE offers by far Southern California's best intermediate/cruiser skiing, reminiscent of Colorado (more)

Waterman Spins its Lifts

Waterman Spins its Lifts

Here's one of the Holy Grails of Southern California skiing: I finally got to ski Mount Waterman, which opened this past weekend. Yes, (more)

Southern California Dreaming (Reprise)

Southern California Dreaming (Reprise)

Motivated by forecasts of ultra-low snow levels and dreams of cold-smoke glory, Trevor and I returned yesterday to the San Jacinto Wilderness to reprise our (more)

Skiing Baden-Powell, 2018 Edition

Skiing Baden-Powell, 2018 Edition

You should have seen the look on my wife's face when I brought out my skis this past weekend. For the record, this was 100% Al's doing, not mine. He's the one who had a (more)

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About SierraDescents

When there is snow, SierraDescents is Andy Lewicky's California backcountry skiing and mountaineering website. Without snow, sierradescents becomes an ill-tempered hiking and climbing blog.

Pray for snow.