Pausing in the Sierra Backcountry

What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever found on a hike?

In September, we were off trail in the High Sierras, on Day 8 of 10. Passing through Echo Col (in the Clyde Spires range), we stumbled upon the wreckage of an old plane crash strewn across the bowl 



This is certainly not the first time the crash has been documented, but it seems like ideal conditions like a low snowfall year, late season hiking, and strategic melting can create more opportune moments to see the plane wreckage. Since there have been multiple sightings of the plane this year, it seems like this past fall brought all three of those factors.

The plane crash occurred on February 16, 1980 when Robert Pole’sprivate Mooney went down during a snowstorm. 

The plane was in such good shape that we weren’t sure if the crash had been documented. So we took the radio call tag (and a small rusted gear train) in case more information was needed. 


Maybe most interesting of all was all the undocumented plane crashes in the Sierra Nevadas. Seems like the whole area is a magnet for single engine planes…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>