Independence Peak

1 Jul 2000 - by Scott Kreider

On Saturday July 1st Arun Mahajan, Stephan Meier, and I set out for Independence Peak from the Onion Valley parking lot. After about 30 minutes of hiking on the trail to Robinson Lake we hit a flatter section of trail and could see a relatively open section where we had a clear shot at the south ridge of Independence. The going was slow lower on the mountain as the scree was disagreeably loose and required extra energy to pedal up the pea sized gravel. We headed for a prominent horizontal teetering block on the ridge to the far right (south) of the summit following a gully. Once on the ridge we proceeded towards the summit reaching a flat area at the top of another, more inviting chute. We continued on the very top of the ridge only dropping to the right hand side only just prior to the final summit. Heading down we opted for the inviting looking chute and this made for a speedy slide back to the cars. Stephan with his ski poles polished his scree skiing skills as Arun joyfully shot down hill at full gallop. Round trip was about 6 hours making this a very reasonable length dayhike. (Note: Although warnings about bears abounded there were no bear boxes available for food storage other than those reserved for car campers.)

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