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Bacon!
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Twin Lakes are two large lakes (hence "Twin" Lakes :) ) above Bridgeport, CA in the Eastern Sierra. The ride starts in downtown Bridgeport and heads up to Twin Lakes about 13 miles west of town. The climb is fairly easy with gorgeous views of the mountains and lower meadows. Lots of water comes out this area and the ranchers take great advantage of it. The only problem was we were riding this ride on a very busy day which meant a lot of traffic heading up to Mono Village. All the cars were pretty nice but lots of vehicles wizzing by kept us on our toes. We were actually on our way to the Southern Sierra so this was a good stop on the way for a quick ride.

https://ridewithgps.com/routes/129135

Our friend K leading the group out of Bridgeport. Her normal rides consist of riding to the nearest winery by her house (which isn't very far) in St. Helena with a loaf of bread and cheese so this was a big deal for her. She did great though.



Twin Lakes are below the snow covered peaks in the distance. No shortage of green in the meadows this year.



I love this valley and have spent a lot of time in the hills and mountains around it. Miserably cold in the winter but just as beautiful. Backpacking is great above here also if you're into high granite country.



The iris are beautiful out there this time of year. Miles of them mixing the greens with shades of blue. But as an old range rider I always remind myself that it's also a sign of heavy grazing and compacting soils. Not a very good thing for the most part. But, the beauty overwhelms the thoughts as I ride on.



Trying to keep the women riding single file was like trying to herd cats. Luckily the cars were patient with them. :rolleyes:



There's a neat old ranch at the end of this road. It's public but you might get some stink eye if you head down there and you'll definitely get barked at.



From the meadows you climb up and over a little sagebrush covered hill and begin the run up the lakes. The mountains continue to rise up more and more as you head along.





Up and around the lower lake. It's a little drier looking down here and not as impressive as the upper lake. Not too many people wandering around down here.



Yep, they are some big mountains.



And then the upper lake comes into view. Lots more fisherman, boaters, etc. Pretty crowded but still very nice.

 

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Bacon!
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Onwards

Upper lake has a beach, Mono Village (crazy tourist filled lodge type place), and nice park. It's very crowded on the weekends at times though. The beach is beyond my bike beyond all the cars :).





And then it was back down to Bridgeport and lunch. Easy cruise back with a nice view of the eastern desert like hills.





Bridgeport is very small but can be fun to explore in the summer. It all but boards up the doors and windows in the winter. If you are lucky the gas station and bar will still be open once the snow begins to fly.



After lunch we headed over to Buckeye Hotsprings. Kind of neat and the water runs down off a little cliff to splatter into some pools. Used to be that you could move a rock and flush out the hotspring pools. People have completely screwed it up and filled the flush out point with mud and grass :mad: . Now the pools are filled with dead bug parts, old body fluids, and leaf matter. It's really too bad. Also, no shortage of people. I did walk down and stood under the shower of water to clean off a little. HOT, HOT, HOT! I danced around a lot but survived.








And then it was onto Bishop California for some slightly more difficult stuff. To be continued . . . .:D
 

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Resident Curmudgeon
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great pics. Looks like a fun ride. BTW getting women to ride single file is not like herding cats. It IS herding cats.
 

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I get jealous every time I see one of your reports.
 

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Reality Star
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Sawtooth Ridge never fails to impress me with it"s rugged beauty. But everyone looks to be "over dressed" at Buckeye Hot Springs !
 

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We need to do a house swap for a week in the Fall... I'll come West, you come East and we'll leave a binder of our favorite rides on the kitchen table. My two winters in Reno were fun but I never really rode that area... which I regret now. Beautiful, even if it doesn't have an ocean.

singlecross
 

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Bacon!
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The late fall at Buckeye is when you will see the "rest" of the picture :). Too many families there right now. I'm into the all natural thing when no kids are around but that water was pretty gross. Next time I head down there I'm going to hit it late in the evening and carry a couple sections of eight inch pipe down there to rig a flush system. It would make a million times better once the water warmed up again.
 

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Bacon!
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Singlecross, something like that sounds pretty awesome. We've got a nice house. . .but, it comes with two fat, furry monsters that terrorize the house. We use to put them in kitty condos when we travel but the kitty condo place will no longer keep them for more than a couple of days. They say they get too aggressive. Normally when we travel now we have to have a friend who isn't afraid of hairballs take care of them.

If anyone ever offers you a free kitty. . .they're lying about the free part.
 

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Power Napper
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Thanks for the reminders. Did that ride a couple years ago when we were on a family car trip. We stayed the night in Bridgeport, I rode while the hubbie and kids slept late, then we were on our way.

Love love love the Eastern Sierras. Took this year off from double centuries, but am really tempted to do the Eastern Sierra Double again next year.
 

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Ridgetop,

I need to hit you up for ride ideas around Mammoth Lakes area. I'm going to be up there in mid August.

in fact, you have a PM
 

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Bacon!
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Check your PMs Bane. I sent you an answer. Let me know if it didn't come through as it was very long.
 

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You meant 'west' out of Bridgeport? Nice!

I pass through Bridgeport often and have wondered about roads around there. I usually pass through in the spring or fall and so don't see much of the tourist crush your ride report shows. I sometimes 'bivouac' (VW Westphalia Bikemobile) near the parking lot of the market on the N. end of Bridgeport.

It would certainly be fun to do a credit card tour of hwy 395 in the off seasons..Trouble is, I would get side-tracked up all the great passes and canyons on both sides of the Hwy and never get 'anywhere'

I am sure you, Ridgetop, are familiar with this site, but for others, on the Everest Challenge link below there's a good write up of the area south of Mammoth Lakes in the Eastern Sierras..Look for the 'climbing mecca' tab.

I am toying with attempting the Everest Challenge race again...It kicked my butt a few years back with some really nasty (cold, windy, icy roads, etc) weather conditions during the race. It can also be blistering hot..



http://www.everestchallenge.com/page1.ihtml?id=15&parent_id=0

Thanks for the write up and the pics..
 

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Bacon!
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
D'oh. You're definitely right Gnarly. Meant west of town.

Thanks for the Everest link. That provides some good info for people. I've ridden a lot of it but never actually done the ride itself.
 

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Ridgetop said:
D'oh. You're definitely right Gnarly. Meant west of town.

Thanks for the Everest link. That provides some good info for people. I've ridden a lot of it but never actually done the ride itself.
East out of Bridgeport on 338, past the reservoir...For a while, 395 was closed and detoured that way.

Just looking at my DeLorme Topo Atlas (old school,I know, but I find most of my obscure rides in these books) I see an interesting loop north and east of Bridgeport ...heading west off that 338 hwy at what is marked "Sweetwater Summit"... Looks like a neat loop heading through the Wellington Hills and looping back to the east of Topaz Lake and then coming back parallel to 395 and the Walker River, but on the east side of that canyon..That road is called Burcham Flats Rd. and rejoins 395 just south of Sonora Pass. I recall seeing that cut-off as I've driven 395...I am going to have to look into that one....

That's how I "discovered" Markleeville, way back in the 90s...looking at obscure traces on printed maps...We stopped into the store in Markleeville after riding Ebbits and Monitor and saw a poster..."The Death Ride"...The store lady told us "a buncha nuts just started riding all these hills, all in a row..."
 
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