What’s brown and white and rocky all over? Bishop in December. Nestled in the desert of Eastern Sierra Nevada, this little western town houses hills dotted with chalked-up boulders that people travel to from around the world to climb.
After finishing an early Friday at work, I made the 7-hour trek to Bishop from mild and rainy San Francisco. Pulling off a winding, icy back road to catch some sleep in Mammoth Lakes, all was black, except for the clearest sky full of stars I’ve ever seen.
I woke next to a desert meadow covered in a thin layer of fresh snow. Sliding out of the backseat, a wall of cold, sage-scented air snapped me awake faster than any espresso could.
The rest of the weekend went like this :: Eat. Drink coffee. Say “Wow, this is freaking beautiful.” Drive to boulders, climb all day. Eat more. Keep climbing. Eat again. Get warm. Sleep. Repeat.
The only aspect more notable than the Mars-like landscape was the eclectic mix of personalities. Think … eager out-of-towners (hailing from Ecuador to LA to Bellingham) to hairy local boulderers living out of vans. Add a scrappy community of dogs — Boxers, German Shepherds, mutts, one precious Italian Greyhound puppy. Now that’s a great crowd.
A few personal takeaways from my weekend in Bishop:
Photos (C) 2015 Amanda Sandlin
Amanda Sandlin is a graphic designer, photographer, and East Coast transplant, now rooting in San Francisco. Some of her favorites pastimes are bouldering, sitting around fires, and cuddling her cat, Sloane. You can find her here :: At Wild, Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.