White Mountain and the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest

Bit of Betsy

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We recently visited the Inyo National Forest to hike White Mountain and see the ancient bristlecone pines. Typically when we drive north on highway 395 we are headed to the eastern sierras, this time we made the turn east towards the White Mountains. Highway 168 out of Big Pine winds up out of the Owens valley into the dry landscape of the Inyo National forest. After a few miles there is a turn-off for White Mountain Road. The terminus of White Mountain Road is also the trail head for White Mountain Peak, which at 12000 feet it is one of the highest trailheads in California.  After turning off Hwy 168 onto White Mountain Road, we were engulfed by the sight and smell of a juniper woodland. As we traveled further up the road the forest became more and more sparse as the sage scrub began to take its place. At…

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