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Heald Peak, Nicolls Peak, Onyx Peak #2, Skinner Peak

27 October 1990

By: Patty Kline

Leaders: Frank Goodykoontz, Patty Kline

There was a lot happening at the Walker Pass campground at 6:30 am when our trip was meeting. David Eisenberg and Don Borad were also leading a trip to Pilot Knob. We sorted out our group of 10 hikers from their group of 35. This is reminiscent of the La Cañada carpool point.

We drove to the roadhead of Heald which is somewhat difficult to find with all those parallel and intersecting dirt roads among the few homes. We did Heald first, going up the trail a ways, then cutting over to Heald cross-country. We had lunch there, admiring the plaque to Weldon Heald placed in 1973. He founded our section and was the first to get his emblem. The trees are starting to cover this plaque which is just as well since it shields it from vandals. The ridge from Heald to Nicolls was endless downhill, rock and brush. It was about 4 pm when we got to Nicolls. Nicolls has one of those nice "ski in the sand" down to the base. From there, we went back to our car shuttle vehicle, which only had to take the drivers a few miles back to the original spot. It was dark by now, making this about 11 hours of hiking in 10 miles and 4000'of gain.

We drove to Inyokern where we had dinner at 2 Sisters. I think the food was mediocre compared to our own community salad and wine the next day. We were supposed to have it after the Saturday hike, but chose the restaurant instead.

Thank goodness for the extra hour on Sunday due to the end of daylight savings time. It was a full day starting at 7 am PST and finishing at dusk.

Onyx #2 was first. It was very hot and straight up in sand. The ski down was classic. Back at the cars below Onyx, we had a great community green salad and Jean Nelson's wonderful fruit salad. Wine was served.

We took the Pacific Crest Trail for Skinner in the hot sun. Those long, not very steep switchbacks made it seem twice as long. We took turns posing on the rocky summit for pictures.

Sunday was 11-1/2 miles and 4000' of gain. We all knew we had a work out. It was a great trip. Thank you Frank for leading us to the tops again. Those on this weekend trip not already mentioned were David Jensen, Gary Murta, Bill Hoghead, Cesar Michel, Bonnie Michel, Bill Faulkner, Charlie Knapke, and Lew Amack.

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