tuolumne slabs picnic

Tuolumne Meadows Slabs. In the far back: roped climbers. In the middle: the party we got invited to. In the foreground, a kid running around one of the most beautiful places on the planet.

One thing that’s been a little tough up here is making friends. For most people in my age bracket if they’re not working they’re either out enjoying what the Eastern Sierra has to offer or they’re parenting, or they’re asleep.

For me, I end up locked in my home office during most daytime hours which is a blessing as it allows us to be up here and a curse in that …. well… I’m locked in an office.

With some mutual friends we got invited to a picnic party up in Tuolumne Meadows, arguably one of the more gorgeous parts of the Eastern Sierra that is vehicle accessible.

In short order I was talking to the guy who runs Mammoth’s Water District, and the high school senior who nailed California’s top rank for skiing last year. In a town this small if you throw a stone you’ll probably hit a cop, the mayor, and an Olympian in the same toss.

But another thing Mammoth has going on is a very transient nature. People are here for a few months or a couple years, and off they go. It reminds me of the waterfront where the old timers generally won’t even bother knowing your name until they’ve seen you around for a couple of years.

But driving back down the Tioga Pass and then the 395, it was once again a beautiful site to see the signs for Mammoth Lakes and know that that’s where our home is.