October 2022 ~ The Eastern Sierra Fall Colors Jeep Expedition

#1 of 1. One more trip and that’s it for this year!

We met the JEO club ( https://jeepexpeditions.org ) near Reno for a quick 1 week trip in and around the Sierra Mountain Range. The goal was to witness the beautiful fall colors. Luckily Mother Nature cooperated!

We came for the fall colors and were treated to tours of old mining towns and sites as well!

Basically, botanical experts will tell you that fall colors are difficult to predict any given year. Much depends on how low temperatures drop in the high country. Aspens have a biological clock geared toward day length and nighttime temperature. Typically, it seems that fall colors in the high country now begin in early September, maybe a bit earlier. Generally, the first week or two of October is a good bet to come up for high country colors but there are no guarantees with nature.
There are plenty of tools on the internet for finding the best fall colors……. We were just hoping we chose the best week for 2022!

Group leaders Sierra Bob (Bob and Mari) and Russ Chung are very familiar with the Sierra Mountain Range and had spent a lot of time and effort creating a great trip. Reasly (Bob and Terry) have considerable knowledge of the Sierra Nevadas, and especially the mining history. We all welcomed their informative narratives at each mine site.

The first scheduled day trip was to Virginia City, Nevada. Unfortunately, we were a day late arriving so we weren’t able to join the Jeep group for the annual “Out House Races”. Darn! No pictures from me!

Mormon Station

The historic Mormon Station is a very well preserved picture in time of the movement of settlers out west. We saw Nevada’s oldest saloon!

The fall colors have arrived.

We seem to have timed this trip just right to see leaves changing. Another week or two later may have been to late.

Mount Patterson Trail

The drive up to the Mount Patterson summit didn’t disappoint. Wow! What beautiful views! There were some tight switchbacks on the road up, but we all made it pretty easily.

Bob and Terry belong to a 4 x 4 club that help maintain The Mount Patterson Trail. They know the trail really well, and we all appreciate the work they do to keep the trail passible.

We learned that a new replacement flag was in tow for our group to raise at the summit. It was a pretty moving undertaking. The wind is crazy at that altitude but we got it done and had a nice tribute to honor the exchange.

We were too late for the blanket of flowers that cover these ridges earlier in the season. You must stay on the trails to not disturb the frail foliage.
A nice Pledge of Allegiance was in order….

Montague Mine/Mt. Patterson Stone Cabin

We accomplished the “backup parking” required on the ledge at the Mine.
The Stone Cabin
Ahhhh…… just beautiful.
It’s nice to have our rooftop tent down off the roof of the car and on the trailer. No ladder required! That is the benefit of having a base camp for 4 days when you can leave the tent behind.

Historic ghost towns of Masonic and Bodie

Masonic Mine Ruins
Bob knows all about the history. We’re again so fortunate to have him along.
What is left of the town of Bodie is very well preserved.

But wait!! BACK UP!!! It’s kind of blurry, but I think I just took a picture of a Grizzly Bear! Eating a cow!!

I’m told it was a brown black bear as it just can’t be a grizzly in these parts…. Hmmmmmm ….. that hump on the back looks like a grizzly to me! He was a big boy, and very ready for a nap after his feast.

A little video of the beast. He was just a quarter of a mile outside of Bodie.
Most of the group line up for the pic.
Camp visitor.

Drive up to Kavanaugh Ridge

Starting to see a little orange and red at the higher elevations.
Back down at the lake to air up.
Lotti loved this lake time.
More camp visitors.
Last night…..

Final day, Tioga Pass road to the trail head of Log Cabin Mine

What an amazing trip! Thanks to everyone for another great JEO event!

You can view all of my pictures at the following link. I take way too many pics to post everything so go to the link to see many more. Feel free to download or share.

More pictures:


On the way home – Passport book is calling…. We have to get the stamp if there is a National Historic Site nearby.

the Devils Postpile, Mammoth Lakes

Manzanar, site of the Japanese relocation center/internment camp during WW II

Mojave National Preserve, Castle Mountains NM


2 thoughts on “October 2022 ~ The Eastern Sierra Fall Colors Jeep Expedition

  1. Thank you Allison for a great trip summary of the Eastern Sierra expedition! Look forward to seeing everyone on the trails soon. Calvin


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