Visit to California - July/August 2004

All photos © David Noble 2004. No photos can be used without permission.

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The purpose of my visit to California was to attend the wedding of Doug Bock and Lizzy Wenk. Doug is a bushwalker and friend of mine, from Sydney. He works as a radio astronomer and has been living in the Berkerley area for the past 7 years. Doug was president of SUBW (Sydney University Bushwalkers) in 1994. At Berkley, Doug joined Chaos (Cal Hiking And Outdoor Society) and there met Lizzy. Lizzy as well as being a botanist is a peak bagger having climbed an amazing number of peaks in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Above - Doug on the Golden Gate Bridge. Note the typical San Francisco summer fog

Above - Sequoias in Muir Woods, Marin County

Above - Sequoia

As well as going to Muir Woods and the Pacific Coast at Point Reynes, I went to the Exploratorium - a fantastic place.


One of the things I thought was strange was the number of "Xing" signs. Eg "Ped Xing", "Bike Xing" etc. It took me a while to realize that "Xing" was short for crossing.

No Panhandlers!


Reminded me a lot of SUBW - in terms of the type of people in the club and their attitudes to the outdoors. There were lots of Chaos members at the wedding - as well as quite a few from SUBW.

The Wedding

Took place at Mammoth - a ski resort in winter and a mountain bike resort in summer. It is also beautifully situated on the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada mountains. I walked to the wedding, from Yosemite, mainly via the John Muir Trail. Doug and Lizzy were married in an outdoor chapel nestled under the mountains. Fellow Choas member, Bryce, who recently became ordained, officiated at the wedding.

To get to the chapel we all had to cross a rickety bridge separating two lakes. The reception was held in one of the camping areas at Mammoth, and we all heeded the surgeon general's very wise advice.

The festivities continued the next day with a wedding breakfast, then some of us were lucky enough to be invited to go on the "Honeymoon Hike" organased by Doug and Lizzy. This was an 8 day hike in one of the most beautful and special parts of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The walk ended near Bishop.

Above - James Turton "The Bishop" - felt at home in Bishop.

After the honeymoon hike, I left the others and spent the next 8 days walking the rest of the John Muir Trail to Whitney Portal.

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All photos © David Noble 2004. No photos can be used without permission.