The Cure for What Ails Ya: Blind Spring Hills

Originally posted on the WPSMB on 2-24-08

I didn’t get the plates on the Mack truck that hit me over the head Thursday mornin’, but I felt like garbage. (Usually this is where someone asks how the truck looked!  ) So on Friday, my co-workers (who are all nurses!) were bugging me to chill out this w/e and get better. But the sun came into my window at 6:30 Saturday morning, and I thought I might get a nice window before the next big storm hit.

So I headed up Hwy 6, north from B-town to beautiful downtown Benton, then back west to the base of the Blind Spring Hills. It’s a very empty sort of place, and I wanted to clear my head a bit (both literally and figuratively!)

The weather was cloudy, a bit windy, and chilly, but holding off anything major. It’s a nice desert cruise out this way, and the hills are completely covered with prospects and mine shafts. Some of the shafts, however, were almost completely hidden, and while I was joking with Tom about seeing if anyone would miss me if I fell in, it really didn’t look like all that anjoyable a prospect. \:\/

I hit four peaks Saturday: Modoc, Buscones, Anderson, and Diana. There was about 1-2″ of new snow and crust underneath, which made for nice footing. But, as always, it just wouldn’t be a Moose trip without the inevitable post-holing. At least it was just to my knees! The scramble down was nice, bouldery Class 2, steep enough for me to keep a heads-up so I wouldn’t break anything.

This little ridge has fantastic views of the Whites, the OV, and the Sierra, although the latter was pretty much socked in from the get-go. It is actually at a pretty fantastic angle to view all the way to Big Pine:

The weather held off, with the sun skirting in and out of the clouds and giving some really cool lighting situations with the various cloud decks. It started to flurry by the time I got back to the TOF, so after-hike snacks and bevs were taken inside.

Highlight of the afternoon: Benton Hot Springs, baby! $10/hr/person and since there wasn’t anyone else there, the lady at the desk let me sit as long as I wanted! As I settled in with my little flask of whiskey, the storm hit, and the snow was incredibly beautiful. Around 4, I knew I should hit the road before it got too gnarly. I was almost too relaxed to drive! Usually my moment of bliss is in the sun, but this counted!

Then it was home to rain (gosh, I wish I had a fire place!), and the best treat of all:

Not bad for a sick day!! Rest of the pics are here.



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