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Posts Tagged ‘Little Lake CA’

So…on Monday, July 9, I said goodbye to Los Angeles after forty seven years and headed North with Ally, Nick and Hero for the Pacific Northwest, Steelhead and Salmon,new adventures and a stone’s throw from Idaho…

Under the bougainvillea gate…

Past the LA Aqueduct, on the hill, that brings water from the Eastern Sierra and Owens Valley into the San Fernando Valley…

A gourmet, tailgate breakfast with the crew in Mojave, CA where the wind always blows…

Through Red Rock Canyon State Park

Past Little Lake on Hwy 395…

Goodbye, for awhile, to the Dino Hut outside of Olancha

…and Owens Lake nearby…

Through Lone Pine, CA where I caught my first Trout when I was five and the Pizza Factory – (“We toss ‘Em , They’re Awesome”) that Michael loved when he was little…

High Sierra Outfitters in Lone Pine where my Father bought Salmon Eggs and Red Worms for my twin Brother and I, back in the 1950’s…

…and, of course , the Frosty Chalet where the best hot dogs, french fries and chocolate shakes I ever had  – after hunting for chukar, quail and pheasant in the Owens Valley back in the day…

This was the Georges Fire that had started the afternoon of Sunday, July 8 and was ragging in the foothills of the Sierra as we headed North towards Independence, CA…I spent a lot of time up in that area, through the years, fishing for Trout and later, teaching Michael and Ally how to target shoot…

Looking down towards the Owens Valley way up along Georges Creek…

The White Mountains below Independence, CA…

Ally’s favorite BBQ in the Owens Valley…Copper Top in Big Pine, CA

Along Hwy 6, North of Bishop on the way to Nevada…

Ally & Hero at the stateline…later California…

Up the grade…where’s the truck?

S’Socorro’s Place, Mina, Nevada…

Ally…healthy eating…

“Don’t ask me…”

There is the truck !…on to Winnemucca !!!

Winnemucca …1st. stop.

Overnight accommodations…

Morning in Winnemucca…

Halfway there…

Looking East, North of Winnemucca…

Last Chance to gamble … McDermitt, NV..

Flagman…hurry up and wait…almost in Oregon…

Rustic indeed…

Southeast Oregon…more desert…

There’s that truck with Nick !…

Always with the stickers…

Pit stop for Hero…

Dropping down into farmland in Idaho…

Somewhere near Arcadia, Idaho…

North of Fruitvale, ID on Hwy 95…

Near Weiser, ID…looking North…

Looking South…

Entering Payette National Forrest

Finally, some forested mountains…

This is a very pretty place that needs some additional exploring…

45th Parallel in Western Idaho…

Little Salmon River... headwaters…

The Summit above White Bird, ID

The Salmon River…

Outside of Lewiston, ID…

Lewiston Hill…Entering Washington State…

On to Pullman, WA…

Apples in the front and backyard…

Ally & Hero…

My new view…  🙂

 

NEXT: Lil’ Moo in Maui then BIG MOO on the Madison River and other places…

 

 

PT/TB

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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What a trip ! Michael flew out from NYC for some time in the Eastern Sierras with me, his sister Ally and HERO the DOG…Oh… and Nick too! This is where we went…and what we experienced…

A BP MAP

Bridegport, CA and surrounding area…

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One knows they are well out of Los Angeles when arriving at Red Rock Canyon, on both sides of Hwy. 14, outside of Mojave, CA…

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…and this would be Little Lake, CA

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The volcano, at the entrance to the Owens Valley and Fossil Falls, just to the right and foreground of the mound…Me and the kids have spent a lot of time wandering around that cinder cone, looking’ for stuff…

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On this trip, Michael and I did not make the usual climb up to the portal at Mt. Whitney, so we let Ally, Nick and Hero do that for us on their trip up to meet us three days later…

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This is Eastside Sports in Bishop, CA. I make a point of frequenting this shop every time we hit the Sierras…never know what I might find and then need. These are the hats that Michael was going through for his wife Aimee…

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Wait !…Michael got one for himself and me to keep the sun off of the back of our necks while fishing the lakes…

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One just does not go through Bishop without stopping at Mahogany Smoked Meats…It’s more important than Sierra Trout Magnet (The Fly Shop), across the street (sorry David !)…

CHILENO PEPPERS

Then the quest to pick up some of these...the MOST RIGHTEOUS peppers on the planet…normally, MSM’s carries these but they were (horrors!) out of stock and nobody else had them in Bishop either…that, required a quick phone call to Ally to implement plan “B” and she picked them up at a shop in Lone Pine on the way up. F.Y.I. these are going to be difficult to get for the next year because of a crop failure on the other side of the Sierras during the growing season…

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Mono Lake, about 35 miles South of Bridgeport, CA where road repairs required us to wait, while only one lane of traffic was open at a time…This is where brine shrimp are cultivated for use as fish food in aquariums. At one time, an interesting group of native Americans, known as the “fly eaters” dwelt on this lake’s Eastern shore. It is too salty to support any fish populations…

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I get to say, “Are we there yet?”…

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Yay !!!…The Walker River Lodge … I have been staying here since 1974, when I first brought my Father up to Bridgeport…

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…time for dinner at the Bridgeport Inn

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The “Virgin Mary”…extra spicy…

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…and garlic bread, of course !

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…up at 6AM and a visit to Nugent’s Bakery, before heading up the mountain…

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…main street, Bridgeport CA at 7AM…not too alive…

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…the arrow designates the way South to Conway Summit and the turn off to Virginia Lakes…

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…along Hwy. 395, headed South…The peaks to the left, in the photo are our destination…

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…getting closer…Michael wanted to pull off the road to make a call back East to his wife…the bars indicated service…

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…my phone does not get service ( thanks, unmentioned carrier) up here so I used it for some photos…Looking South towards Mono Lake…

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Little Virginia Lake…our first spot on the Itinerary…

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…The “Old Guy” in a reverse view…Virginia Lakes closes up for boat rentals at 11AM on Tuesdays so that the staff at Virginia Lakes Resort can go down the mountain to Bridgeport or Mammoth Lakes for recreation and taking care of personal business…be aware if ya’ don’t take some other type of water craft with ya’…

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…so Michael and I headed over to Trumbull Lake to fish from the shoreline…a trek through the “Mule Ears”...

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Trumbull Lake, looking East…this lake has Browns, Rainbows (planted) and Brookies. The Rainbows are the most plentiful. I have seen a 7 lb. + Brown taken from this lake and there are probably some larger ones in here as well…

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…on the far side of the lake, by the scree and talus…one of my favorite spots, here…

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…Michael slackin’ off with his new brim…

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…looks like a rise to me…

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…yep…

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…a typical Trumbull Rainbow…

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…and another…

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Trumbull Lake… approaching sunset…

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…a rise in deeper, dark water…

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,,,a beaver lives just below that fallen pine…

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...A Callibaetis Spinner Michael picked off the surface film…

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…down the mountain for dinner at the Virginia Creek Settlement

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…what’s on the menu ?

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…well, this is just part of what is offered…the Italian servings are great and so is the pizza…

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…after dinner moon…

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…the following day, back at Little Virginia Lake with the “Old Guy” rowing…

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…Michael nails a 2lb. / 10 oz. Rainbow on an Owens “Offender”…The overall fishing on this trip was difficult. Normally, we catch and release a lot of Trout when visiting these lakes. Jim Reid, owner of Ken’s Sporting Goods in Bridgeport, had some thoughts on just why this was occurring this season. I will not go into his explanation – but I do concur…

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This is the East Walker River, an Eastern Sierra classic, “Blue Ribbon” water. Because of our current drought, the water flows are very low and warm. The river is choked with weeds and algae and the mosquitoes are out for blood…Michael and I left our favorite river – alone…

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…more East Walker, close to the Nevada state line…

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…looking downstream…

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…another downstream view…

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…Bridgeport Reservoir …the source for the East Walker River and the lowest I have seen it since it was drained in 1987…

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…one fellow, working the river below the dam. Michael watched him take a 18″ Brown from this section…like I said, I leave it alone…

40 BP 15 LOWER TWIN LAKE

…this is Lower Twin Lakes, outside of Bridgeport. The level is down 15′ and we took photos rather than fish it…

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…another view, looking Southeast…

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Upper Twin Lakes…more water, deeper and colder…there were only two boats out on the lake when we passed here and we did not fish it…I visited again with Ally,Hero and Nick on a very wet evening, a few days later…

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…exploring time for Michael…what follows are some places and images that Big Moo documented while Pop pounded the water with a gazillion fly patterns…

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..Red Lake…

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Red and Copper…

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Carolyn Webb told me there was a submarine sized Brown in here…haven’t met ’em…yet…

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…more Red Lake from the non-red side…

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…patterns in the water…

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Summit Pass …11,100’…

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…more form and texture from Summit Pass…

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…Alpine flora…

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…something for Nadia’s next kitchen counter project…

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…and Koi Pond…

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Alpine trickler…

55 BP 15Lone Pine by the lake…

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Big Virginia Lake and the WALL…sit over there in the evening with a float tube or pontoon and use beetle and flying ant patterns…

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…looking back towards Big Virginia Lake…

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…a good casting location which Michael always seems to find…

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…another view from the Summit Trail back towards Virginia Lakes…and Nevada in the background…

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…another lake I don’t know the name of..way up there…

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Peak scenery…

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The Jolly Kone in Bridgeport…the burger and hot dog palace, which appears to have a new offering…

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Nope, don’t see it on the regular menu…

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Enough food…back up to Little Virginia on an overcast day which was marked by thunder and showers…

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One of the locals (Scud) that motored by our boat just as the rain stopped…

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Then, Michael added this to his tippet…

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…and BAM !!!

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Michael brings the Trout up to the Lodge to have Carolyn put it on the digital scale…

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Carolyn lets Michael know the scale is off by 2 ozs. under…

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…almost ready for the report photo…

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Carolyn shoots…

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Michael goes on the board a second time…

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Pop shoots Michael for posterity…this is the largest Trout he has landed, to date…

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…and who shows up moments later…ALLY !!!

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…and Hero…

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Meanwhile, back on the lake, I pick up…

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…a few Brook Trout…

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…using this little red peacock soft hackle…

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Pretty little guys…

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Back down the mountain to celebrate with pizza at the Virginia Creek Settlement…

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Thanks Nick !!!

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Back to the Walker River Lodge and some work for Michael…

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Michael cleans a Big Trout…

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Step #.1, – with a good sharp knife…

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Step #.2, all the way up to the initial cut…

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Step #.3, take the gills and entrails rearward…use  finger nails to remove all veining and blood…

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Step #.4, breathe…place in freezer…get ready for yer’ last day…

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…first on the lake, early in the AM on a day that did not see much action…

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Dinner and not mint juleps on the veranda at the Bridgeport Inn. Michael left the following morning to pick up his wife in Reno and spend a few days with her family up in Lake Tahoe…

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So it’s Ally, Hero and Nick. I got him started with a fly and bubble on a rainy day. Nick’s fishing experience on freshwater lakes was, shall we say…limited. He got a nice huge strike on a Tan Seal Bugger but did not set the hook in time – doh…

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…and I was having this kind of day…

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…while Ally, Hero and Nick went looking for Frodo and Mordor…

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…Nope, not here…

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…getting wet…

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Ally and Hero up there…

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A short trip up to Upper Twin Lakes in the rain…

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At the marina…

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Ally and Hero … posing…

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Boats at rest…

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The cafe at Annett’s Mono Village where Michael swears he had the best cheeseburger ever…( kid was delusional )…

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Last sunset before leaving Bridgeport…

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Since Nick had never been here, we made a point of stopping at the Mt. Whitney Fish Hatchery which I have been visiting since 1952…

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The brood stock pond…the race ways, where large Brook and Rainbows were kept, were destroyed in a flood in 2008…they have not been replaced…More HERE

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When I was a little kid, my Dad would bring my brother and I here. There were thousands of Rainbow, Brown, Brook and Tiger Trout in the metal rearing pens inside this structure…

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Bring your kids too !!!

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Yep…Ally and Michael have been coming up for quite awhile…

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Ally, 1995, by the raceways that were destroyed…

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Michael spies some Brook Trout…

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Why I love this place…

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No story is complete without an ending…and nothing goes to waste…

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Michael does filets…

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Marinate for a little while…

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Grill…

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Add the sides…

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Enjoy !!!

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A little paddling on Lake Tahoe…and there’s the hat Michael got Aimee…

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Until next time…

NEXT:…

CONES HOOKS

…more of patterns tied on these…

PT/TB

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As I mentioned in my previous post about the Mt, Whitney fish hatchery, my first visit to the Owens Valley came in 1951 when my Dad, Brother and I drove up in my Dad’s 1949 powder blue, Buick convertible to visit with my Mother while she was shooting a film on location outside of Lone Pine, CA. In those days, it took 6-6 1/2 hours to drive up through Palmdale and Lancaster to Mojave and on to Lone Pine from Los Angeles – there were no four lane highways.

OWENS VALLY BLOG

The Owens Valley begins just North of Little Lake, CA. The Owens River once flowed out of Owens Lake, many millions of years ago, down through Little Lake and into a series of great lakes in the Southern California desert. Remnants of this once roaring river may be seen at Fossil Falls just East of a large, dormant volcano that marks the Southern boundary of the valley. Little Lake has an astounding number of petroglyphs on it’s Eastern shore – carved into the volcanic rock that borders the lake.

ARTICLE FROM THE NY TIMES 5.07.2010

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Little Lake petroglyphs…

and, information on those who created them…

Rock Art

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Little Lake Overview…

Thousands of years ago, an Indian tribe known as the “Sheep People” lived in this area and directly to the East in the Argus and Coso Mountain ranges ( now part of the China Lake Naval Weapons Center). When the bow and arrow arrived in this spot, it is believed that these people decimated the resident Desert Big horn Sheep population and later migrated to the North and East to establish the tribes of the Great Basin and Northern Plains. The entire area has a profound mystical quality to which I have been drawn my whole life.

Here is an excellent site for learning more about the early inhabitants of the area:

Petroglyphs.US

and, another:

Hwy. 395

and, another:

North American Rock Art

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Fossil Falls…

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Cinder Cone, Location of Fossil Falls…

This is where a natural dam was broken by an overflowing Owens Lake over 250,000 years ago, creating Fossil Falls and a series of major lakes in the Southern Great Basin…

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My TROOP at Fossil Falls, 1992…

A friend of my Dad’s, Ralph Dadasman, constructed three, nine foot fiberglass fly rods for my Dad , my Brother and I. Ralph was very active in a fishing club in Long Beach, CA. I first had an opportunity to watch a fly angler in action when we visited with Ralph and his family in June Lake,CA in the summer of 1953. It was these rods that the three of us used in Lone Pine, CA in Lone Pine, Shepperds, Symmes, North Oak, Oak and Independence Creeks. We would rig these rods with floating lines on old Pfleuger reels, to a six to eight inch long, 1-2lb. test leader and depending on the stream flow, 2-4 BB shot. We used gold and bronze #16 and # 18 Mustad treble hooks – fishing downstream. We crawled on our knees and sometimes stomachs, to inch our rod tips through the thick underbrush, lowering the tip over the water and stripping line off the reel once the leader and shot caught in the current. Bait consisted of worms, salmon eggs or grass hoppers and crickets. This is where I first learned the deadly effectiveness of drowned hopper and cricket patterns.

My Dad would go through this ritual of rigging next to his ’52 blue, woody, Ford Station Wagon then, the three of us would trudge streamward. My Father alway wore his trusted Russell Birdshooters for snake protection ( rattlesnakes were everywhere) and would have his hand- crafted, woven creel/basket, lined with wet Mule Ears, carried on a leather strap slung over his shoulder. The creeks were filled with Rainbow, Brown and the occasional Brook Trout. For some inexplicable reason, my Pop would refer to the Browns as “Natives” although having been introduced from Europe, there was nothing “native” about them. The DFG planted Rainbows. The Browns, after being originally introduced, were left to spawn. Note: ( My Dad bought his boots at Kerrs in Beverly Hills on Wilshire Blvd.- one of the finest rod and gun stores that ever existed.)

In the course of a day, each of us usually caught our limit of 25 fish- getting soaking wet in the process. On one particular trip to Lone Pine Creek, my Dad fell in a deep, sandy hole in the cold, rushing early summer water. I had never seen him so scared. He panicked and screamed for me to help him. I was about eight. It took me about five minutes to lock my small body around a tiny tree trunk which extended over the stream, reach out with a skinny arm that he could grasp and hold on for dear life while he pulled himself up my arm and out of the creek.

On days that the fishing was slow or we had a taste for something else, we would get up before sunrise, have a hearty breakfast at Ralph Lyons’, Mt. Whitney Cafe and head out into the desert to look for arrowheads. This practice, which I continue to this day, was a direct result of my Father being befriended by some local Paiute women ( they worked as waitresses in local cafes) who drew incredibly accurate maps of locations were these artifacts might be found. Over the years, we found arrowheads, trading beads, scrappers, awls and a host of other tools and pottery. Based on this information, I have found other spots throughout the Owens Valley, Deep Springs Valley, Saline Valley and Eureka Valley which have yielded excellent results. How and where to do this will remain a closely guarded family secret. I have taught my kids the hydrological and geographical features which lend themselves to such discovery. On occasion, I have stumbled onto a few spots while out hunting or target shooting – well off the beaten path and requiring 4 Wheel Drive. The reason we got up so early and looked so late…. The sun at a proper angle glints off exposed obsidian…

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Locals gather at Sunset, along the fingers of The Owens…found many walking these…at Sunset…

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The above were found by me and the kids..please see my post ARROWHEADS AND SACRED PLACES for more detail…

A little dry lake bed out in the Owens Valley (4.14.2011) where Ally, Josh and I found the following…some pottery shards and small obsidian points…

I remember in the Winter of ’81 when I had gone to the Owens Valley by myself to hunt for yip dogs ( I gave up hunting in 1987 at the request of my son Michael) .

OWENS LAKE SUNSET -1-Owens Lake…where Los Angeles stole it’s water from …

FAL 50.63 FN “PARA”, scoped (Nimrod 6×42), loaded with 125gr., .308 SP, the best non-HB Varmint Rifle ever made…

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Something else in the Southern Sierras…

I made my first pre-dawn stand just North of the Alabama Hills along Hogback Creek. As part of my preparation before calling, I had affixed tie on pads soaked in fox urine to the bottom of my boots. I moved to a spot West of my stand and placed a film canister containing skunk screen. I walked to a spot about 300 meters away from, and directly East of the first canister to place a second near a low lying area along the creek ( don’t ask, if you don’t understand why I’m doing this) when I noticed a chunk of dark obsidian in the middle of a cow’s hoof print. I reached down and extracted a 4 inch long, perfect spear point – unbroken. This has happened more than once…

2nd best Varmint Rifle: Valmet Mdl. 76, scoped (Redfield 2×7), load .223, 55gr. BTHP…

https://i0.wp.com/www.sfgate.com/blogs/images/sfgate/opinionshop/2007/07/16/coyote06_PH04498x333.JPG

The Esteemable Yip Dog….

It never ceases to amaze me how many people who whiz up 395 to ski Mammoth and June Lake have no earthly idea of the richness of this vast valley…

 

Beret Flash – 10th. SFG, 1st. Special Forces (ABN)…another part of my story…

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Some Friends…

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Lookin’ for a Yeti…

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Two hitchhikers in the Saline Valley…arrow-3

Those guys were lookin’ for these things….

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S&W Mdl. 57…

S&W Mdl. 57 – .41Mag. …

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Owens Valley at sunset, 1987…

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Michael starts with a .22 – Ruger Bull Barrel…1985…

Ruger Mark I Bull Barrel – .22LR

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Road Rig…1987…tim-add-owens-valley-85

Sunset, high in the Eastern Sierras – 1987…

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Michael, sighting in, 1987…

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Down Range

A Northern portion of the Owens Valley…

PT/TB

 

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