While we were camped at Lone Pine, we had hoped to visit some museums and places, but all indoor places were closed to protect against virus infections. We had hoped to see Manzanar again, but all indoor facilities were closed, as were the Eastern Sierra Museum and the Museum of Western Film History. Alabama Hills BLM was open as it, of course, is all outside. So that is where we headed. It is just west of Lone Pine. Alabama Hills has been the scene of many western movies so we hoped to see some interesting terrain. And we did.
Shortly after starting on the Movie Road, we saw a turnoff to the Lone Ranger Canyon, so off we went. This part of the Hills is a series of dirt roads through the sand and rocks. After going just a short way, I became concerned that we might never find our way out. Not really, as the GPS was showing us where we were, but still, it was a bit unnerving to me. After we went over a rock and down into another canyon area, I felt we should go back. While going over the rock in our 4 wheel Drive Jeep, I realized that I could not see if anyone was coming toward me and the road was barely a lane wide there. So we turned around while I still had a sense of where we were. Jenn got out and walked to the top of the rise to be sure no one was going to meet us at the peak. I put the Jeep in low 4WD mode and up I went. It's good I was in $WD because the sand caused me to slip a bit on the way over the rise but I made it to the top easily and stopped to pick up Jennifer. And back we went the way we had come, and then stuck to Movie Road.
The scenery was quite nice as you can see from the slideshow. We had the Alabama Hills around us and Mount Whitney and more of the Sierras just behind the Hills.
We found the parking space for the hike to Mobius Arch so we stopped and started walking to te arch. The trail was fairly well marked. That is to say, it was not well marked. But we found our way around some rocks, and there was Mobius Arch. Since it was quite hot already, we chose to return the 1/4 mile to the Jeep rather than hiking the 3/4 miles around the loop.
After returning to the Jeep, we saw another Jeep towing a trailer on around the road, along with a variety of other high and low clearance vehicles. Shortly after that, we saw some cars moving slowly and going on our side of the road for a bit. We found why: there was a short section of the road with a lot of the sand mounded on the other side of the road, and when we saw a jeep with large tires go through it, we saw how much up and down was involved and why other cars were avoiding it. It was bad enough on our side of the road, which I am sure was better because we were going downhill in that section. It reminded me of parts of the road in Monument Valley.
Around the bend, there was the family with the trailer setting up camp in a boondocking spot. It was really hot, and we could see he was also starting up his generator, presumably for running his air conditioner. He would need it! We continued around Movie Road and out of Alabama Hills and managed to find our way onto Moffit Ranch Road and back to US 395, and then back to camp.
I took more photos of the Sierras than of the Alabama Hills. Too bad. Next time, more photos of the Hills!
Retirement is great. We bought a travel trailer and are exploring National Parks. (Actually, we bought one and sold it and bought a second one better suited to us. It happens...) And I have time to do some woodworking projects and things around the house. And now I have gotten interested in ham radio so there goes any free time.