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Baldy via the North Backbone

Baldy via the North Backbone

I had no idea a fine hiking trail exists on the ridge connecting Pine Mountain, Dawson Peak, and Mount Baldy. Better yet: in summer, you can drive Blue Ridge Road to the (more)

Hiking Throop Peak to Baden-Powell

Hiking Throop Peak to Baden-Powell

Of course I was dimly aware you could hike the San Gabriel Crest from Windy Gap as an alternate way to get to Baden-Powell's summit, but the route never particularly interested (more)

Ski Hut-Devil’s Backbone Loop

Ski Hut-Devil's Backbone Loop

Connecting the Ski Hut Trail and the Devil's Backbone Ridge is one of my favorite SoCal hikes—in either direction. This time my son and I ascended from Manker Flat and (more)

Mammoth Memorial Day Weekend

Mammoth Memorial Day Weekend

It's no secret 2020-2021 wasn't exactly California's finest winter, but that didn't stop Mammoth from offering excellent top-to-bottom skiing this past Memorial Day/closing (more)

Ontario Peak

Ontario Peak

8694' Ontario Peak is easily among the most spectacular of the San Gabriels' front-range peaks. The summit offers a crazy juxtaposition of city and mountain views, making this (more)

A Good Day at Baldy

A Good Day at Baldy

From the archives, here is Mount Baldy one year ago, March 23, 2019. I videoed the kids and I enjoying a classic day of Southern California Spring skiing at the resort, but I (more)

Anvil Camp via Shepherd Pass Trail

Anvil Camp via Shepherd Pass Trail

This is a 2010 backtrip trip I did from Symmes Creek to Anvil Camp via the Shepherd Pass trail. We had intended to climb Mount Williamson via the west face, but got shut down (more)

North Palisade: The U-Notch

North Palisade: The U-Notch

This is a May 31, 2010 climb and ski of North Palisade's U-Notch couloir. Originally I had intended to do an extended video of the whole trip, but a few things got in the way (more)

Backcountry Photography Rule #1

Backcountry Photography Rule #1

Oh this was a tough day, and I came within a whisker of just burying the footage and trying to forget about it entirely. Here is how bad this day was: when, a few days later, (more)

San Gorgonio Reprise

San Gorgonio Reprise

After a nine year hiatus, Al and I returned last Sunday to the San Bernardino Mountains' South Fork drainage, where we found snow, avalanche debris, and ash—lots and lots (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.