CAPTURED BY GOPRO
Alabama Hills has been filmed as the ancient Roman plains, the American South, the deserts of Afghanistan, and Krypton. When you see these rocks, you feel like you’re on another planet.
Dylan Efron and Wil and Hayley Dasovich are childhood friends who chose Alabama Hills as the starting point of a 4-day backpacking trip into the High Sierras. It's been years since they've been together. They each have their own lives and careers now, but once they started climbing these rocks, it was like they were kids again.
Sometimes, they just stopped at the top of the highest boulders and stared at the Sierras in the distance.
TO THE LAKE
This is an ancient place born by glaciers and volcanoes and armored with prehistoric quartz, pine, aspen, and waterfalls, all guarding seven lakes.
Mountains are deceiving in a way. They seem like tall rocks from afar, but you discover intricate and untouched ecosystems once you climb them. You know you are a visitor, and you begin to take on the habits of one: aware of your noise level, mindful of your steps and grasps, and grateful to be living this experience.
AT THE LAKE
The wind was brutal and rushed down the frozen mountain, plunging into the valleys and resisting their climb. But, they fought back and made it to a cliff that overlooks the lake.
The lake rests at the foot of two dramatic peaks only visible from this proximity: one wide and sloped with curved edges; the other, taller, dark, narrow, sharp, jagged, and leaning over the lake. The mountain commands attention even from the lake, where water is collected from the melted, blue runoff.
They were battered by winds that threatened their tents during the night, even with stones weighing them down. It makes you wonder why someone would want to do this.
They climbed down the mountain in about half the time it took to go up. They forgot about their tired legs and lungs to be proud of themselves for completing something many would not attempt. But mostly, they reminisced with each other.