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A Climber’s Guide to the High Sierra (1954), edited by Hervey H. Voge

References and Maps

THE LIST below has been selected to include books that may be of particular interest to climbers. For the most part these books are concerned with early history and exploration, geology, or general descriptions and tourist information. Very little is to be found in them about Sierra climbing. A number, however, contain outstanding collections of photographs that can be very valuable to those who wish to climb or explore.

Adams, Ansel. Sierra Nevada and the John Muir Trail. 50 plates. Archetype Press, Berkeley, 1938.

———. My Camera in Yosemite Valley. 24 plates. Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 1949.

Adams, Ansel and Virginia. Illustrated Guide to Yosemite Valley. Stanford Univ. Press, 1952.

Brower, D. R. (ed.). Manual of Ski Mountaineering. Univ. Calif. Press, 1947.

———. Going Light—with Backpack or Burro. Sierra Club, 1951.

Colby, W. E. (ed.). John Muir’s Studies in the Sierra. Sierra Club, 1950.

Farquhar, F. P. Place Names of the High Sierra. Sierra Club, San Francisco, 1926.

———. “Exploration of the Sierra Nevada,” California Historical Society Quarterly, vol. 4, 3-58 (1925).

———. Yosemite, the Big Trees, and the High Sierra: A Selective Bibliography. Univ. Calif. Press, Berkeley, 1948.

———. Up and Down California in 1860-1864: The Journal of William H. Brewer. Yale Univ. Press, New Haven, 1930; Univ. Calif. Press, 1950.

Hall, Ansel F. Yosemite Valley: An Intimate Guide. National Parks Publishing, Berkeley, 1929.

King, Clarence. Mountaineering in the Sierra Nevada. First edition, 1872. Later edition (F. P. Farquhar, ed.), W. W. Norton, New York, 1946.

LeConte, J. N. A Journal of Ramblings through the High Sierra (in 1870). Sierra Club, 1930.

Livermore, N. B., Jr. “Collecting Sierra Passes,” SCB, 1942, 59-64.

Matthes, F. E. Geologic History of the Yosemite Valley. (U.S.G.S. Professional Paper 160.) U.S. Govt. Printing Office, Washington, 1930.

———. The Incomparable Valley: A Geologic Interpretation of the Yosemite. 51 photographs. Univ. Calif. Press, 1950.

———. Sequoia National Park: A Geological Album. 125 photographs. Univ. Calif. Press, 1950.

McDermand, C. Waters of the Golden Trout Country. Putnams Sons, New York, 1946.

———. Yosemite and Kings Canyon Trout. Putnams Sons, New York, 1947.

Muench, Josef and Joyce. Along Sierra Trails: Kings Canyon National Park. 146 photographs. Hastings House, New York, 1947.

Muench, Josef. Along Yosemite Trails. A collection of photographs. Hastings House, New York, 1948.

Muir, John. My First Summer in the Sierra. Boston, 1911.

———. The Mountains of California. New York, 1894.

———. Yosemite and the Sierra Nevada. Selected writings of John Muir and 64 photographs by Ansel Adams. Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 1948.

Peattie, Roderick (ed.). The Sierra Nevada: The Range of Light. Vanguard Press, New York, 1947.

Russell, C. P. One Hundred Years in Yosemite. 52 illus. Univ. Calif. Press, Berkeley, 1947.

Starr, W. A., Jr. Guide to the John Muir Trail and the High Sierra Region. Sierra Club, 1934, 1943, 1946, 1951, 1953.

White, J. R., and S. J. Pusateri. Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Stanford Univ. Press, 1949.

Wolfe, Linnie Marsh (ed.). John of the Mountains: Unpublished Journals of John Muir. Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 1938.

There are a number of maps of the High Sierra region that show trails and road approaches. Some of these are issued by the National Park Service, some by the U.S. Forest Service, and some by private publishers. The latter are designed primarily for hunters and fishermen. The map in Starr’s Guide shows trails and some knapsack routes but does not give topographic detail. By far the best maps for the climber are the topographic maps of the U.S. Geological Survey. They may be purchased from a number of bookstores or sporting shops, or from Survey offices in Washington, Denver, or Sacramento. The original maps on a scale of 1:125,000 (30-minute series) cover the entire High Sierra. The quadrangles, in correct geographical arrangement, are as follows:

Dardanelles  Bridgeport  
YosemiteMt. LyellMt. Morrison  
KaiserMt. GoddardBishop
TehipiteMt. Whitney

Larger maps on the same scale are combined for Yosemite National Park, which includes most of Dardenelles, Bridgeport, Yosemite, and Mount Lyell; and for Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, which includes most of Mount Goddard, Bishop, Tehipite, Mount Whitney, and parts of Kaweah and Olancha.

A remarkable Special Map of Yosemite Valley, 1:24,000, is also published by the U.S. Geological Survey.

A fine new series of photogrammetrically based maps has been started by the U.S. Geological Survey. These maps are much more accurate than the old maps. They are published for the High Sierra region on a scale of 1:62,500 (15-minute series). A partial list of these new maps, in correct geographical arrangement, follows:

Mt. ConnessMono Craters
Merced Pk.Devils PostpileMt. MorganCasa Diablo Mtn.
Shuteye Pk.Sharktooth Pk.Mt. StanfordMount TomBishop
Shaver LakeHuntington LakeBlack Cap Mtn.Mt. GoddardBig Pine
Patterson Mtn.Tehipite DomeMarion Pk.Mt. Baxter

Of these maps, only four have been issued in final form to date (March, 1954), namely, Mount Tom, Mount Goddard, Bishop, and Big Pine, which cover the eastern half of the old Mount Goddard quadrangle and the western half of the old Bishop quadrangle. The other maps may be obtainable in preliminary form from the U.S. Geological Survey, Sacramento. All of them, as well as additional maps of the new series, will be published within the next few years.

The table shows the USGS maps of both the old and the new series that will be needed to cover the various climbing areas. It should be noted that only four of the new series maps have as yet been issued, and that on final issue the names of some may be changed.


Abbreviations:YNP = Yosemite National Park Sheet
SKCNP = Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Sheet
Climbing AreaMaps of Old SeriesMaps of New Series
Sawtooth RidgeBridgeport or YNPMatterhorn Peak
Bond Pass to Tioga PassYNP or Dardanelles + Mt. Lyell + Bridgeport + (Yosemite) *Tower Peak + Matterhorn Peak + Mt. Conness + (Hetch-Hetchy East)
Yosemite ValleyYosemite Valley Yosemite Valley
Cathedral RangeMt. Lyell or YNPMt. Conness + Mono Craters
Clark RangeMt. Lyell or YNPMerced Peak
MinaretsMt. Lyell or YNPDevil’s Postpile
Mammoth Pass to Mono PassMt. Goddard + Kaiser + Mt. Morrison + (Mt. Lyell)Mt. Stanford + Sharktooth Peak + Mt. Morgan + (Devil’s Postpile)
Mono Pass to Pine CreekMt. GoddardMt. Stanford + Mt. Tom
Humphreys RegionMt. Goddard or SKCNPMt. Tom + (Mt. Goddard)
LeConte DivideSKCNP or Mt. Goddard + (Tehipite)Black Cap Mtn. + (Tehipite Dome)
Evolution RegionMt. Goddard or SKCNPMt. Goddard + (Black Cap Mtn.)
PalisadesSKCNP or Mt. Goddard + BishopMt. Goddard + Big Pine
Kings Canyon RegionSKCNP or Tehipite + (Mt. Goddard)Tehipite Dome + Marion Peak + (Black Cap Mtn.)
Palisades to KearsargeSKCNP or Bishop + Tehipite + Mt. Whitney + (Mt. Goddard)Big Pine + Marion Peak + Mt. Baxter # + (Mt. Goddard)
Kings-Kern DivideSKCNP or Mt. WhitneyMt. Whitney + Mt. Baxter #
Whitney RegionMt. Whitney or SKCNPMt. Whitney + (another)
KaweahsSKCNP or Tehipite + Mt. Whitney + KaweahTriple Divide Peak + Mt. Whitney + Needham Mtn. + (Kern Peak)

* Parentheses indicate that this map is needed for only a minor portion of the area named.

Special Yosemite Valley sheet, scale 1:24,000.

# The Mt. Baxter sheet will probably be renamed Mt. Pinchot when issued.

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Online Library: Title Author California Geology History Indians Muir Mountaineering Nature Management