|White Mountain Visitor Center|
|The writer at work|
We learned the center was open when the roads cleared of snow, usually around the middle of May or beginning of June (depending on the amount of precipitation received in the White Mountains) and closed around the beginning of November. There was only one road up and down off the mountain and at nearly 11,000 feet above sea level can make the drive treacherous depending on weather conditions.
One interesting fact we learned was there were very few insect issues and no bear problems, unlike across Owens Valley in the Sierras due to so little rain. Made camping under the stars much more enjoyable than slapping at flying thingies all evening or waiting to be eaten by Smokey.
|Sierra Nevada Mountains|
Dave Hardin was asked a similar question. "I like the White Mountains because it's like a marriage when one understands they have to accept the whole picture and not just an isolated portion of that person they are marrying. Makes for a healthier relationship and that goes for nature also."
|Philly and Dave|
Asked what happens when the weather suddenly changes from sunny to cloudy threatening snow in late spring or early fall Philly simply smiled and said: "We get the hell off the mountain and lock the road barriers behind us."
The Visitor Center is open mid-May until sometime in November depending on weather and snow/road conditions. Call the White Mountain District Office for exact opening and closing dates: 760-873-2500.
An easy drive along Highway 395, either north or south, at the town of Big Pine travel east on Highway 168 for 13 miles. Then turn left at the signed junction for White Mountain Road to the Bristlecone Pine Forest and continue 10 miles until the end of the paved road at Schulman Grove. Turn right into the visitor center parking lot. Do be careful since the road is narrow in spots but well-maintained. Also watch for sudden shifts in the weather when the roadway may become icy or snow covered.