What Goes Up Must Come Down

We’re back from a marvelous weekend in Death Valley where yesterday Susan and I and our friend Rachel hiked from the 8,133-foot Mahogany Flats campgound to the top of the 11,049-foot summit of Telescope Peak and back. About five miles in Susan and Rachel decided the 10,000-foot mark was a good place to stop and wait and rest while I went onward to the summit. And I got there, as shown, after making my way up and around 13 switchbacks, past countless glorious and ancient bristlecone pines and over one last steep and slushy snowbank to arrive about 2:30 p.m. I lingered about a half hour before making my way back down to my love and my friend and together we trudged the remaining five miles back down the range to the campground.


Today, I welcomed my 42nd consecutive year of existence with an achingly gorgeous and beautiful weathered morning at the campground. But this time instead of going up, I boarded my mountain bike after we packed up our campsite, and with Susan and Rachel tailing me soared some 17 miles downhill from 8,133 feet at the campground to 1,386 feet on the floor of the Panamint Valley, where it was a lot hotter than from where we’d come.

Without reservation it was my most unique and memorable birthday ever. And of course, I have tons of pix and much more I could say about the hike and the ride and the weekend, but at this point in time I am home and entirely spent and this will have to suffice.

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Will Campbell arrived in town via the maternity ward at Good Sam Hospital way back in OneNineSixFour and has never stopped calling Los Angeles home. Presently he lives in Silver Lake with his wife Susan, their cat Rocky, dogs Terra and Hazel, and a red-eared slider turtle named Mater. Blogging since 2001, Will's web endeavors extend back to 1995 with laonstage.com, a comprehensive theater site that was well received but ever-short on capital (or a business model). The pinnacle of his online success (which speaks volumes) arrived in 1997, when much to his surprise, a hobby site he'd built called VisuaL.A. was named "best website" in Los Angeles magazine's annual "Best of L.A." issue. He enjoys experiencing (and writing about) pretty much anything creative, explorational and/or adventurous, loves his ebike, is a better tennis player than he is horr golfer, and a lover of all creatures great and small -- emphasis on "all."