Sierra Stories

1:22 p.m. on January 27, 2020 (EST)
balzaccom
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746 forum posts

We love to read about the Sierra--not just hiking books and trail guides, but history about the region and its wonderful and often crazy people.So this holiday season we noticed a book in our local independent bookstore:  Sierra Stories by Gary Noy. 

Gary was born in Grass Valley and for the past twenty-five years taught history at Sierra Community College.  And we wish we could have taken a class from him.  He is clearly one of those teachers who doesn't stop at covering the basics, but rather dives into the subject matter and makes it come to life for his students.  He also knows how to tell a story.

And what could be more relevant and interesting to students at Sierra Community College than the fascinating history of the Sierra itself?

Gary has published a series of books on the topic.  We're reading Sierra Stories right now, but will certainly move on to read his other titles, including the soon to be published Hellacious California: Tales of Rascality, Revelry, Dissipation, Depravity and the Birth of the Golden State (Heyday Books and Sierra College Press). 

We hope you find some of these books locally, but if not, you can find them on the huge web book retailers.  It's just not as much fun as buying from a local bookstore.

Here's a link to Gary's website, where you can learn more about him and the books he writes.  Highly recommended. http://www.garynoy.com/home.html

Check him out!

1:28 p.m. on January 28, 2020 (EST)
ghostdog
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308 forum posts

Thanks, I’ll se if they are on audiobook. 

A couple of books come to mind that I have read 

Early Days is the Range of Light, Daniel Arnold, an amazing history of early explorers. 

And possibly the best Sierra backpacking book of all time. The Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac. It is the mid ‘50s Gary Snyder took mad Jack on his very first backpacking trip and taught him the way. He introduced ‘ol Jackie to gorp, salami, cheese and ryecrisp along with many other tips and tricks. Their objective, the infamous Matterhorn of Yosemite.

Jack’s writing is right up there with On The Road in this slice of early modern backpacking that preceded our own.you can figure out exactly where they went. Then he takes Jack around to outfit hm properly for the apocalypse, everything needed to sally forth with home contained upon his back. This is as classic as it gets. 

5:48 p.m. on February 5, 2020 (EST)
GaryPalmer
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5,429 forum posts

I sepnt Jan 1st to May 31 in Yosmite and the high sierra in 1980 when I was 24. I spent 90% of  my time in the high country. Had a igloo on top of El Cap and had hot chocolate for any climber who came by. I hiked the perimter of Yosemite cliffs from the Winona Tunnel to the Oak Flat Road. Stayed in Lil Yosemite Valley  for two weeks, hiked up to the Quarter Domes and Clouds Rest. Hiked down Bridivail Creek to the brink of the falls in April. Lost a sleeping abg that rolled down the ridge and over near Glacier Point and a friend with me a climber climbed down 40 feet where it had caught on a ledge and brought it back to me, almost stepped off Glacier Point in a white and out and almost died in my sleep from three eaxtra days on Glacier Point, had to be heli-ed out. Body core temp dropped to 93 degrees. Freak storm hit holding me in my tent for a week, walk 2 feet from tent it was gone in a blizzard. Walked on tenya Lake camped along the Tioga Road, hiked to Tioga Pass in the moon light.  Spent a week on top of Yosemite Falls, chopped ice from Yosemite Creek to make water on my stove. Had a North Face VE-24 tent, EMS down sleeping bag rated to minus 30, Ensolite pad. Svea 123 gas mountaineering stove, wore mountaineering boots with crampons and used an Ice Axe alot. Saw Mirror lake in May when it was a lake and not a dry meadow as in summer.

Went down to Merced on the Yosemite Transportation bus to buy food 2 times of three months worth. Had it mailed to me in the valley and the post office let me keep my boxes of food care packages till I needed them.

Borrown Warren's bike, a halfdeath climber, he had left it in Curry Village and I found it leaning on a tree, I rode and he said it was his when he saw it and let me use it.

Never made to the top of Half Dome, tried in Sept 1977 but the height and angle of the cables frightened me!

I worked in Yose it 2002 from May to July, left to travel.

6:37 p.m. on February 5, 2020 (EST)
Old Guide
447 reviewer rep
443 forum posts

GP-You need to write and publish a book of your life.

8:01 p.m. on February 5, 2020 (EST)
whomeworry
125 reviewer rep
3,550 forum posts

Was camped along the South Fork San Joaquin River section of the JMT.  It was early August, the sun setting, the lighting was good.  Our camp was well above the trail, at a crook in the river.  We had a post card view up stream from our camp.  For no particular reason I decided to look up, assuming I'd see a clear sky.  Instead, the entire canyon was filled with bats, millions of them, about 100' above the ground, occupying the airspace for several hundred feet higher.  I've seen large groups of bats, but this sighting was in a class of it own.  At first I thought  there may be a roost in a nearby, large, cave, but the bats seemed to be hanging out, rather than passing through to a distant hunting ground.  They probably came from elsewhere.

Ed

11:21 a.m. on February 6, 2020 (EST)
ppine
73 reviewer rep
4,108 forum posts

ghostdog,

Thanks for mentioning the Dharma Bums.  I named my car Cassidy after Neal. 

Last week I recited some Dead lyrics as poetry at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko.  I opened with Cassidy. 

I have seen where the wolf has slept by the silver stream, 

I could tell by the mark he left, you were in his dream

Oh child of boundless seas,

Child of countless trees, 

What you are is what you're meant to be, 

Born to me,

Cassidy. 

5:14 p.m. on February 8, 2020 (EST)
ghostdog
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308 forum posts

ppine said:

ghostdog,

Thanks for mentioning the Dharma Bums.  I named my car Cassidy after Neal. 

Last week I recited some Dead lyrics as poetry at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko.  I opened with Cassidy. 

I have seen where the wolf has slept by the silver stream, 

I could tell by the mark he left, you were in his dream

Oh child of boundless seas,

Child of countless trees, 

What you are is what you're meant to be, 

Born to me,

Cassidy. 

 

I like those words. Very evocative. I read Neals book, The First Third. Interesting and the first third of the book was very good and then it devolved into attention deficit. I read his wife’s book, Off the Road, pretty good read all the way through and I read Nicosia”s book about his other wife Luanne, The One and Only, a great bio. 

A very good Kerouac book is the original scroll of On The Road, totally unedited from his original draft with all the characters read names. I’ve read a few more Kerouac books too and some about their times with him and the gang by other authors. 

As flawed as they were they possessed a strange exuberance of life for a short period in time. 

7:22 p.m. on February 8, 2020 (EST)
ppine
73 reviewer rep
4,108 forum posts

We began as road warriors in the 1960s with old 1950s cars.  Kerouac and Cassidy and other beats were in the front seat with us.  Brautigan and Ferlinghetti.   We grew up listening to Joan Baez and Pete Seeger playing protest songs in front of the White House.  California became the Golden Door so I moved there in 1972 in a VW Bus. 

I first remember seeing the Sierras in 1969.  About the time I started on the Golden Road to Unlimited Devotion and climbed aboard Further the Dead Bus.  

Green '51 Chevy Deluxe

Turquoise '57 Chevy Bel Air

Sky blue '60 Ford Sunliner

May 25, 2020
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