• The Sierra: Discovering the Backcountry

      Henley, Casey; Soroka, Laurence; Soroka, Tova (2012)
      In recent years I have rediscovered my own passion for skiing. After overcoming multiple injuries that have kept me out of the backcountry it is finally my time to explore. For the last few years of my life I have been watching the ski films of backcountry touring that have only inspired me more to get out there in the backcountry. All of this has motivated me to begin the process for my own expedition, which follows in this proposal. My expedition will be starting at the Mammoth Lakes Region and ending at Tioga Pass, California. This trip is not truly a Sierra Crest tour (~500 miles of the Sierra ridgeline traveling north- south) because it goes off of the crest and tours through the Ritter Range. This trip travels through the magnificent Minarets area and through part of Yosemite National Forest. My trip will establish 3-4 base camps set up approximately 10 miles apart from each other. From these areas we will be doing day tours for 2 or 3 days before traveling to a further camp along our path. The proposal includes the history of skiing in the Sierra Mountains that goes back to the days of postmen using skis to deliver mail throughout this mountain range. Because this is being planned as a self- sufficient extended backcountry tour, I do not want to travel with more weight then necessary, and have decided to use the Freezer Bag Cooking style to help implement this. Finally since we are traveling in terrain that is avalanche prone I have increased and will continue to increase my avalanche training and understanding and practice of backcountry avalanche protocols for our expedition. Topics covered in planning for this expedition include risk management plans, emergency contacts, Leave No Trace guidelines, leadership planning, and conditioning and training Plans.