My Solo Wanderings of the West


The next day I finally left Lone Pine and headed north on 395, a whole 16 miles, to Independence and another Inyo County campground on Independence Creek.

From the campground I could see the intricate maze of switchbacks that led up the mountainsides to Onion Valley and Kearsarge Pass. I took the bike for the ride up to the top at over 10,000 feet. Some of the steep drop-offs along the road were a little unnerving.
This is the view looking back down the switchbacks, the green patch in the distant valley is Independence.

My destination lies still quite a ways further up the mountain.

Finally arriving at Onion Valley. The spot is a popular trailhead for treks into the Sierras and the trail over Kearsarge Pass is one of few exit points for PCT hikers on the long high Sierra stretch to leave the trail to resupply.

The Onion Valley campground up top was still closed with snow on the roads and covering many campsites.

And to finish this update; a poser shot of the bike on the ride down the mountain. :)



Good to hear from you again,I was wondering if you had moved into Slab City.;)
The Portal area,that is some rugged country,thanks for the pictures.


New member
You inspired me to take the wife and camper van to the Lone Pine area. We also stopped at Fossil Falls then camped and tooled around the Alabama Hills. We have been going up to the June Lake loop for decades in the summer time but too hot to stop in Lone Pine usually. This was in May so still cool. Looked for circling buzzards just in case but none spotted.

Recommended books for Overlanding

The Alchemist, 25th Anniversary: A Fable About Following ...
by Paulo Coelho
From $10.47
Dreaming of Jupiter
by Ted Simon
From $16.43
National Geographic Road Atlas 2021: Adventure Edition [U...
by tional Geographic Maps
From $22.46
Road Fever (Vintage Departures)
by Tim Cahill
From $6.99


New member
Kenny, You've inspired many. So much so that I bought a van in CA (while living in HI) and wandered for about a month up the CA coast and into OR. I'm planning the next leg of my trip for this later this summer in OR, WA and into Canada. Thanks for the inspiration. Aloha from a rock in the middle of the sea.


If you head north to the Bristlecone Pine Forest, stop at the Copper Top BBQ in Big Pine. They BBQ pork, beef and chicken, all good. If you go north to Yosemite, you owe it to yourself to at least stop and walk through Camp 4 and check out the rock climbers and watch them scale a climb for a couple hours. Most rock monkeys are an eclectic group but generally friendly if you have questions about what they do. Also have a more scenic alternate route to Tahoe if heading that way.


WHOOOOO HOOOOO your back, Awesome. I was getting withdrawal. Great pics of the mountains. Thank you...


Hi Kenny-

Just read this whole thread over the past few days...amazing! Thanks for taking the time to share! I love the way you are seeing so much beautiful country without a huge cash outlay. I am now looking into purchasing an enduro to carry on the back of the truck...seems like the best way to see the surrounding areas.

I've been wondering what you do for meals. Could you tell us what your typical daily eats consist of when you are camped in the boonies for a few days?




Hey all, once again it’s been way too long since an update. Unfortunately, sometime around July 4 the laptop that I used for all my writing and photo editing took a dump. I got a new computer pretty quickly but it took a while to recover the data that i didn’t have backed up, and to get the new laptop configured.
So, as a result of the crash I am dreadfully behind in updates, but the travels have continued and I have covered some amazing territory and had some great adventures.
I really look forward to getting caught up on updates. I’ll start with this old update which I had ready to post before the crash. I still need to get back to some replies so please bear with me.

Thanks to everyone following my travels!


Picking up where I left off in Independence CA...

I had heard many recommendations for the Eastern California Museum so while I was at Independence I made sure to visit.

Inside there was so much to see with an excellent exhibit on the development of the Los Angeles Aqueduct. Outside was a huge yard full of buildings and equipment from the area mining history.

The little town of Independence, with a population under 700, is the Inyo County seat with its stately courthouse. It was here that Charlie Manson was brought by Inyo County Sheriffs after being arrested at Barker Ranch, initially just for charges of vandalism of then Death Valley Monument.

From my campground at the edge of Independence, a twilight view of the Sierras.

I headed north to Bishop for a few days and camped in the Pleasant Valley area a few miles out of town. The White Mountains, completely snow-covered, rose in the east. The highest peak seen here is just a few feet shy of Mount Whitney’s record height.

This road follows the Owens River through Pleasant Valley. The area is popular with fishermen and some of the rock walls along the valley are popular with climbers for bouldering.

One evening I watched this dramatic sunset.