“My God, think of the all the poor people living down there”

Tom and I went for a backcountry ski tour today, starting from the ski resort at Badger Pass. Badger was quiet today, but everyone we saw in the parking lot was headed toward the same destination that we had chosen: Dewey Point.

Dewey Point is one of my favorite summer destinations, because during the warm months, when the road is open all the way to Glacier Point, the hoards throng to that point, and we usually have Dewey Point all to ourselves. In the winter, when the road is closed to vehicle traffic, Dewey is the nearest view of the Valley floor.

Although we stopped and had lunch on a rock at Dewey, our ski didn't end there. We continued up the rim a short distance before heading back uphil toward the Glacier Point road. Yesterday, we were amazed at the number of fresh bear tracks we found during our ski. Today, we must have passed 3-4 sets of cat tracks – big cat tracks. I looked up into the trees wondering how long ago it had been there.

It was an incredible day, full of sunshine and great skiing. We were treated to a number of stunning panoramic vistas. We gazed out over the Clark Range, and beyond that to Mt. Florence and Mt. Lyell. And we looked out over the sea of fog covering the central valley… that might have been beautiful except for the kind of yellowish brown from the smog. “My God,” says Tom, “Think of all the poor people living down there in that.” Life's pretty good up here on our mountain.