The first run to Bishop Pass of the year is always special. Why, is a fair question and this explanation will never do the Experience justice but hell, its better than keeping it all to myself. (Photo: looking over Dusy Basin from Bishop Pass)
Running to Bishop Pass and back over 20+ miles of snow and having that low point between the mountains all to myself before sunrise makes me feel invincible (at least until it feels like hypothermia is starting to set because I’m drenched in sweat and not wearing any wind protective clothing). But who needs a wind breaker when it’s a balmy 20° F at 12000’? Besides when you’re running you really don’t need to stop right? I’ve been criticized before for not spending much time on the passes to “enjoy” them. Personally I enjoy solitary snap shots over the time frame of many years much more. A hiker at Piute Pass once asked as I was running by “what’s the hurry? Aren’t you going to enjoy the view?” My reply was, “This is my 11th time over the pass this year and every other time I had it to myself.” That was the end of our dialogue. I’m sure he just thought I was another lost idiot ready to make a Yell phone call at any moment. Something on the lines of HEY CAN YOU HERE ME, WHERE YOU AT, I DON’T KNOW, ON A PASS OR SOMEWHERE, YOU’RE BREAKING UP.
That’s it! It’s the solitude! That’s what makes the first run to Bishop Pass so special. It’s the absences of people, the lack of noise, the lack of carbon monoxide, and the absence of automobiles (parked ones are still ugly). It’s also the ability to run from the trailhead to the pass in a direct line with no switchbacks, no trail, no mule shit, and no need to go around the lake when you can just run right over it. If the ice was clear instead of white it would look like Jesus running across water at Long Lake!
So that’s how stories are passed on for 2008 years. Hmmmmm.
I’ll end it on that note.