January 2013             Peak Climbing Section, Loma Prieta Chapter, Sierra Club                                    Vol. 47 No. 1

http://peakclimbing.org - http://www.facebook.com/peakclimbing

General Meeting

 Date                  January 8, 2013

Time          7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

Where       PCC

                  3921 E. Bayshore Road

                  Palo Alto, CA

Program     Wandering & Climbing the Bernese Oberland of Switzerland

Presenter Rod McCalley

This show comes from an Aug.-Sept. 1977 climbing trip to Switzerland with my wife Peggy (serving as our second honeymoon.) Guiding ourselves worked great (with the help of a small stash of hiking & climbing guides, plus a notebook of train schedules) and resulted in a memorable combination of climbs and treks among huts, back-country inns/dorms, and a few city hotels between the climbing loops. After a start in the Zermatt region, our four Bernese Oberland climbing loops explored further north toward Interlaken. Included are climbs of the Tschingelhorn, Morgenhorn, and ultimately the Jungfrau.

Directions from 101

Exit at San Antonio Road, go east to the first traffic light, turn left and follow Bayshore Rd to the PCC on the corner of Corporation Way. A sign marking the PCC is out front. Park and enter in the back of the building.

Google     http://tinyurl.com/28ng

Editor's Notes

2013 will be awesome! Xmas skiing at Sugar Bowl was fantastic, so hopefully that's a sign of good months ahead.

Happy New Year!


Chair Column

Happy New Year and welcome to another year with the PCS!  We meet monthly on the second Tuesday at 7:30 pm, usually in the Peninsula Conservation Center on 3921 East Bayshore Road, Palo Alto.  I invite anyone with an interest in mountaineering, especially in the Sierra Nevada, to join us.

It's not too early to start dreaming up the trips you'd like to do this year, as wilderness permits can be reserved six months in advance and are necessary for popular destinations.  Using the web site Recreation.gov seems to be the preferred way to reserve permits now (I've even had Inyo rangers direct me to it instead of taking my reservation directly).  We will hold a trip planning meeting in February at a time and place to be announced in the February Scree.  Rod McCalley (rodmccalley@sbcglobal.net) has graciously volunteered to serve temporarily as Trip Scheduler while we search for a Vice Chair.

We usually have a slideshow presentation at each meeting.  We have speakers lined up for the first few, but ideas are welcomed and encouraged for future meetings.  Rod McCalley will be January's speaker with a program on the Bernese Oberland of Switzerland.

Climb On!

Terry Cline



Snow camping allows you to backpack in all seasons. By snowshoeing or skiing far into the wilderness, you can visit the Sierras with its thick layer of snow and enjoy the scenery far from the crowds; no competition for the "best" campsites!

The skills obtained from the Loma Prieta's Snow Camping Seminar prepare you for camping happily in the snow, and give tips for day skiers or snowshoers caught out overnight. Participants must be experienced summer backpackers as this course will give you winter information and tips but doesn't teach basic backpacking.

Three evenings, held at the Sierra Club in Palo Alto (near San Antonio and RT 101) on Jan 15, 17, & 22 and one weekend field trip on Feb 2-3, 2013. 40 participants for the evening classroom sessions, and 25 participants on the outing.

$40 cost includes books, instruction, and some common equipment used on field trip.

To sign up, send $40 check, payable to BSCS, to P.O. Box 802, Menlo Park, CA 94026. Include name & email of each person, phone #, Sierra Club member number (if oversubscribed, preference will be given to members). Upon receipt, we will acknowledge and send info and directions.

Questions? Contact Chris MacIntosh at 650/325-7841, cmaci@sbcglobal.net , or John Langbein, john_langbein@yahoo.com.

Exciting News! 

From Emilie Cortes

Hello all!  I have an exciting announcement to make!  I am turning my life upside down to pursue my two passions – the outdoors and the advancement of women.  As many of you know, I had a really difficult knee injury and recover from surgery (ACL reconstruction) in 2011 when I was PCS chair.  It caused me to take a really hard look at my life when I was temporarily no longer able to get out and decompress in the backcountry for balance.  My lifestyle was not very healthy with high stress, lots of travel, and lack of recognition.  So in November, I quit my job, guided a Call of the Wild trek in Nepal, came back and finished the acquisition of the company.

Call of the Wild is an all women’s adventure travel company focusing on hiking, trekking, and backpacking in California and beyond. Some classic Call of the Wild trips including the Yosemite Snowshoeing Weekend, Discover Death Valley, Carmel-by-the-Sea & Big Sur Explorer, Cinque Terre & the Italian Rivera, and more!

 I will also be adding some fresh new trips to the 2013 lineup including a Backpack 101 weekend in Point Reyes, Palisades mule

pack, Sawtooth Range in Idaho, Kilimanjaro, and Annapurna base camp.  We plan to finalize the calendar by mid-December so that you can work on planning your 2013 adventures!

 In the future, I would like to add climbing and yoga to the range of activities we offer, but first I want to focus on getting my bearings.  I am also open to your feedback and ideas.  An all female mountaineering trip to Bolivia or Patagonia?  A beginner’s mountaineering course in the Oregon Cascades?  Let me know now so that I can begin to plan.

 Finally, Call of the Wild is known for its custom gourmet backpacking food.  We can accommodate vegetarian, vegan, gluten free and lactose free diets.  Eventually I would also like to offer the food as a separate product.  Planning the John Muir Trail or Denali?  Let us know and we can package and ship your food!  Please feel free to provide your feedback as we’ll be aiming to launch this in 2014 unless you are dying for help with a trip in 2013.

 Anyway, I’m excited to let you, my community of climbing peers, know that I am walking the walk about working through your fears and following your dreams with this new venture.  I would love your support!  You can help in a number of ways:

-       check out our website and sign up for our mailing list at www.callwild.com

-       check out our Facebook (www.facebook.com/callwild) or Twitter (@callwildtrips) feeds

-       sign up for a 2013 trip (or sign up the women in your life!)

PCS Trip Calendar

These are required statements.

Note: CST 2087766-40. Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California.

Note: All Sierra Club trips require you to sign a Liability Waiver.


January 6 - Junipero Serra

Leader: Lisa Barboza

January 26 - 27 - Bradley Hut

Leader: Bobbie Morrison

(Co-sponsored with Loma Prieta Ski Touring Section)

February 22 - 24

Leader: Bobbie Morrison

(Co-sponsored with Loma Prieta Ski Touring Section)

PCS Trip Details

Junipero Serra

Goal: Junipero Serra

Location: King City

Date: January 6

Leader: Lisa Barboza        

Difficulty: Class 1

Join us for our annual trip to Junipero Serra, elevation 5875', highest peak in the Santa Lucia Range.  It’s about a 10 mile round trip, about 3800 feet of gain.  This is a beautiful climb.  Very possible to expect snow on the summit, and for the last 500 feet of the climb.  Much will depend on the weather – heavy rain cancels.  There is a use trail all the way to the summit, where we will take lunch and enjoy the  views.  Bring plenty of water, believe it or not, the south facing trail can get warm, even in January.

The drive from Morgan Hill to Fort Hunter Liggett takes about 2 hours so we will meet early, and upon arrival, briefly explore the wonders of Mission San Antonio de Padua, built in 1779, abandoned in 1882, an isolated example of early California Franciscan Missions which was restored only in the 1950s.

Carpool: Meet at the Carl’s Junior at 101 and Dunne Avenue in Morgan Hill at 6:30 AM.  Call Lisa at 650 493-8099 or lisa.barbozaATgmail.com for information.

Bradley Hut Backcountry Ski Trip

Goal: Bradley Hut

Location: N. Tahoe, near Squaw Valley

Dates: January 26 - 27

Leader: Bobbie Morrison  

Difficulty: Intermediate (with Advanced Ski Skills)

Rendezvous at 9:30 am Saturday, then ski 5 miles and climb 1500 ft to Bradley Hut in upper Pole Creek near Squaw Valley. The ski to the hut is barely an intermediate trip, but the skiing at the hut will be advanced intermediate to advanced level. All participants must have appropriate telemark or alpine touring (aka randonee) skis and bindings and be able to link turns consistently on steep slopes. All participants must have working avalanche beacons, shovels, and probes and know how to use them.

We will ski in on Saturday, drop off our packs and then look for the best snow and ski lines for downhill runs, either up the crest west of the hut, or on the north side of Silver Peak, before retiring for a sumptuous dinner. Sunday we will do more runs in the morning before heading back out to the cars in the late afternoon. It is important to have the skills to ski back to the cars quickly (downhill with a pack).

$40 covers hut fee and dinner Saturday night. Participants bring their own breakfast, lunches and snacks. Contact the leaders to get mailing address for sending checks. All participants must submit a medical form with payment and must sign the Sierra Club waiver at the trailhead.

Cancellations within 1 month of the trip will be refunded only if the spot is filled.

Bobbie Morrison, bobbiemorrison at sbcglobal.net
Dave Marancik

408-269-2903 (for both)

Pear Lake Hut Backcountry Ski Trip

Goal: Pear Lake Hut

Location: Sequoia National Park

Dates: February 22 - 24

Leader: Bobbie Morrison  

Difficulty: Advanced Intermediate

Ski to Pear Lake hut in Sequoia National Park on Friday Feb 22, have a layover day for finding good downhill ski runs, more skiing in the morning on Sunday the 24th before we leave for the descent back to the cars. The trip starts at 7,200 feet at Wolverton and climbs a steep 6 miles to the hut at 9,200 feet. All participants must be in good physical condition, have telemark or AT skis with wide climbing skins, be able to consistently link turns on steep downhill slopes, must have an avalanche beacon, shovel, and probe, and know how to use them. We have the whole

hut reserved, sleeps 10.  Cost is $84 for the hut plus the cost of food (to be calculated later.) Contact Bobbie Morrison, bobbiemorrison@sbcglobal.net, 408-269-2903. Co-leader is Dave Marancik.

Climb Mt. Shasta and Fight Liver Disease

Each year in June the American Liver Foundation sends a team of climbers to Mt. Shasta to climb, have fun, and raise money to fight liver disease.  To date, the Liver Life Challenge Mount Shasta Climb Team has raised over $650,000 to support liver-disease research and education. 

This is a great opportunity to do something you love while helping others in need. 

If you're interested, go to alfshastateam.com for more information, and send an email to our climb team leader, Dave Hinman, at dave@alfshastateam.com.


Joining the PCS is easy.  Go to   http://www.peakclimbing.org/join

PCS Announcement Listserv

If you join the PCS Announcement Listserv you will receive announcements and updates of trips and meetings. Use the http://lists.sierraclub.org/SCRIPTS/WA.EXE?A0=LOMAP-PCS-ANNOUNCE&X=&Y= web page.

Climbing Classifications

The following trip classifications are to assist you in choosing trips for which you are qualified. No simple rating system can anticipate all possible conditions.
    Class 1: Walking on a trail.
    Class 2: Climbing using hands for balance.
    Class 3: Climbing requires the use of hands, maybe a rope.
    Class 4: Requires rope belays.
    Class 5: Technical rock climbing.

Trips may also be rated by level of exertion: easy, moderate, strenuous, or extreme.

Deadline for submissions to the next Scree is Monday, January 28. Meetings are held on the second Tuesday of each month.