Also Treasure Mountain, by Louis L'Amour, because I can!
First, Telescope Peak. Telescope Peak is the peak that stands on the West side of Death Valley, and towers over Badwater (the lowest spot in North America). It is 11,048' high, which puts it 11,331' above the view of it from Badwater (282' below sea level). Straight line between the alkali flats and the summit is 20 miles, so that's a lot of relief!
In spring of a good year (i.e. one when CA has seen some precipitation), the summit of the peak is buried in snow even when the bottom of the Valley is scorching. The trail, 14 miles round trip from the road's end at Mahogany Flat campground doesn't usually become passable without crampons and winter gear until mid-May.
It's hard to get the color right--the salt at Badwater is white like snow, which is always hard to shoot.
|Badwater and Telescope peak. 1998 was a wet year, reflected in the heavy snow cover (and great wildflowers down below).|
Now for the book review:
Title: Treasure Mountain
Author: Louis L'Amour
Publisher: Bantam, 1972. 192 pages
Source: library (digital)
Summary: Louis L'Amour invented the Sackett family and, eventually, tracked their history through 2 or 3 centuries though most of the books were of course set in the Frontier West period. In this book, Tell and Orrin Sackett are on a quest to find out what happened to their father, who disappeared into the west 20 years before. The quest starts in New Orleans, but ends in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado, with (of course) a great deal of struggle and not a few good fights along the way.
I can't review a book like this as though it were Anna Karinina. L'Amour's westerns were never meant to be great literature, and they aren't. Sometimes they aren't even very well written (though this one seemed more free than most of the kinds of flaws that annoy me), but most are reasonably well plotted and all are delightfully embarrassing to love.
Recommendation: For anyone who loves Westerns, and hopeless romantics.
Full Disclosure: I checked Treasure Mountain out of my digital library, and received nothing from the writer or publisher in exchange for my honest review. The opinions expressed are my own and those of no one else. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."