White Mountain Details

if GLORIA climate survey at the WMRS GLORIA climate survey at the WMRS

July 30 2013 Update:  Thank you all for a wonderful week with the GLORIA California team at Crooked Creek in 2013.  Our workshop was filled to capacity and the participants enjoyed field trips and natural history walks that covered bristlecone pines, alpine ecology, mammals, human history, periglacial features, beautiful views, spacious landscapes, and clouds.  Participants assisted in supplemental GLORIA-summit plant listing, replacing temperature loggers, and helped establish a new downslope-survey on Campito Mountain.  And we had several evening presentations ranging from art to thunderstorms.  The weather was spectacular, sometimes pressing us to end our outings early, but we got it all done.  Many thanks to all our new friends who made the week a success!!

Pictures from the 2013 Workshop at Crooked Creek


Archived announcement from 2013 below – stay tuned for 2014 dates!


JOIN US for a fun and educational stay at WMRC’s Crooked Creek Research Station at 10,200 ft in the White Mountains

This year, the California GLORIA field crew is holding an open-invitation field session. Interested parties are encouraged to come join us and learn about the alpine environment. Educational walks, hiking tours, and lectures will be led by some of the scientists who know the White Mountains best. Accommodations are at the UC White Mountain Research Center’s Crooked Creek Research Station, a lovely high elevation mountain lodge surrounded by ancient bristlecone pines.  Participant fees for this week will help fund the upcoming GLORIA field work in 2014 & 2015. Click here to download our field trip flyer.

CONTACT: Adelia Barber adelia@biology.ucsc.edu

*** MORE DETAILS for registered participants here

Field Trip Leaders


Adelia Barber: Adelia has spent many summers in the White Mtns researching bristlecone dynamics as part of her dissertation at UCSC, she has been working with the GLORIA project since 2006.

Jim & Catie Bishop: Jim & Catie have been an essential part of the GLORIA project since the very first California survey in 2004.   They are both active in the state CNPS (California Native Plant Society) organization; Jim is our thunderstorm specialist and Catie is one of our alpine botanists.

Chris Kopp: Chris has been researching alpine plants in the White Mountains as part of his dissertation at UCSD for the past 4 years, and has explored much of the high-elevation terrain in the White Mtns.

Connie Millar: Connie is a research scientist with the US Forest Service’s Pacific Southwest Research Station, and has been critical to the establishment of GLORIA sites in the western states.

Jan Nachlinger: Jan is a botanist/plant ecologist and collects vascular plants & bryophytes in the Great Basin, Mojave Desert, and Sierra Nevada. She has volunteered on GLORIA projects since 2009.

Tim Forsell: Tim is a naturalist with deep knowledge of the botany, geology, and and anthropology of the White Mtns. He is also one of the only long-time residents of the high-altitude White Mountains, having worked at Crooked Creek for many years.

Dylan Neubauer: Dylan is a botanist and a long-time CNPS member.  She has spent the last two summers working  in the White Mountains and has cataloged the Crooked Creek herbarium.

Dates/ Sessions / Prices

Session 1  Sat July 20th – Wed July 24th
Session 2 Wed July 24th – Sun July 28th
The Full GLORIA Experience   Sat July 20th – Sun July 28th

Additional opportunity: Interested in staying July 16-20?  The non-profit AlpineEarth will be helping the GLORIA crew replace temperature loggers, and we are taking additional willing volunteers, contact Adelia Barber (adelia@biology.ucsc.edu) for more specifics on this trip.

Prices are PER PERSON, for a specific type of room.  Families with children are welcome.

 Single Session (4-days) The Full GLORIA Experience
Price for a single bed in a shared dorm room  $240  $420
Per person price for a private room with a shared bathroom in the hallway (these private rooms hold 1-2 people)  $300  $540
Per person price for a private room with a private bathroom (these rooms hold 3-4 people, but can be reserved for just 2) $340 $620

Lodging Details


Lodging is at White Mountain Research Center’s Crooked Creek Station, located at 10,200 ft in the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest (Inyo National Forest).  There is a main dining area and common room, a lab space and a library.

Shared dorm rooms:  4-6 beds per room, most have a private bathroom.  The “shared” rooms include the bristlecone cabins, each with 4 beds and a private bath.  Any number of people can reserve a bristlecone cabin for the shared room price x4.

Private /couples rooms: There are a limited number of private rooms.  Most have 1-3 beds, and a shared bathroom in the hallway.  Couples can reserve a room with 2 beds for the private room price x 2.


Meals: Hot breakfast, lunch to go, and full dinner are provided and included in the price.  We think the food is the best of any research station in the western states!  Accommodations are happily made for vegetarians, vegans, or special dietary needs, but please let us know well in advance.

Field Trip Activities

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Daily structure: Our field trips will be structured to allow all participants to explore and learn about the different habitats in the White Mountains. We will break up into groups most days; one group will be helping with the GLORIA field work while another group goes on a educational walk / casual hike in the same general area.  Groups will usually switch mid-day so that everyone has a chance to participate in all activities.

4-day Stay vs. The Full Week Trip: We will be going to a different location each day of the week, so people staying the full time will not be bored or disappointed! Some of the educational programs may be repeated for the second session depending on how many stay for the 4-day or week long trips.

White Mountain hikes: Participants will be helping the GLORIA crew collect data on species distributions on White Mountain peak (14,250 ft).  Participants will have several options for the White Mountain hike, we will all drive to the Barcroft Station, located at 12,500 ft, some people can start hiking from Barcroft (~5.5miles and ~1800ft elevation gain one way to the summit of White Mtn).  Others can drive past Barcroft and start the hike at the base of the switchbacks at 13000ft ( ~2 miles and ~1250 elevation gain to the summit of White Mtn).  We will need enough willing drivers with 4WD high clearance vehicles to carry participants past Barcroft. Non-researchers start their hike 2 miles below Barcroft, so this is a great opportunity to summit White Mountain Peak without the extra miles and elevation!

For less intense hikers: There will always be less-strenuous hiking options for people who would like to move a little slower.  Depending on how many people want (or don’t want) to hike White Mtn peak, we may have an alternative hike on those days, or non-White Mtn hikers may have a free day.

Free time: Participants are welcome to take free time during the week to explore other locations.

Evening programs:  There will be various evening talks during the week depending on interest, some choices are: Mountain Thunderstorms by Jim Bishop, Great Basin Flora by Jan Nachlinger, Chris Kopp’s research on sagebrush, Adelia Barber’s research on bristlecone physiology, and Connie Millar’s Pika research.

Tenative Schedule (subject to inclement weather)

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Saturday July 20: Session 1 participants arrive anytime after 10am — After lunch at Crooked Creek, we’ll take a slow afternoon walk up to a near-by ancient bristlecone grove and then tour the Golden Siren mine site.

Sun July 21: Patriarch Grove, the treeline ecotone, & the GLORIA dolomite sites — Take an educational tour of alpine plant life at the treeline around Patriarch Grove, and then join the GLORIA data team surveying plants at the top of Sheep Mtn and/or take a late-afternoon small-mammal tour of County Line Hill while helping search for pikas.

Mon July 22: Blanco Mountain bristlecone forest & the Sage Hen Flat GLORIA site — Hike through a unique bristlecone grove and past an old miners’ encampment to reach the top of Blanco Mtn, then help the GLORIA team record plants at the top.  One group will also work on categorizing blooming plants at the Sage Hen Flat GLORIA site.

Tues July 23: White Mountain Peak hike for those interested, weather permitting — Groups will help record plants on the slope leading up to the peak.

Wed July 24: Session 1 folks leave, Session 2 folks arrive — After lunch at Crooked Creek, we’ll take a slow afternoon walk up to a near-by ancient bristlecone grove and then tour the Golden Siren mine site.

Any full-week participants can go on an amazing hike to the largest relict grove of bristlecones, or take a break day.  The relict grove hike may also be offered as a alternative to White Mtn Peak on Tuesday, depending on interest.

Thurs July 25: Campito Mountain ancient bristlecone forest — Take an educational tour of some of the oldest high-elevation bristlecone pines on Campito Mtn, then join the GLORIA team laying out transects near the top of Campito and/or take a late-afternoon small-mammal tour of County Line Hill while helping search for pikas.

Fri July 26: Mt. Barcroft and the upper alpine — Drive to Barcroft Research Station and hike Mt. Barcroft, learning about the upper alpine zone plants and helping the GLORIA team record plants at the top of Mt. Barcroft.

Sat July 27: White Mountain Peak hike for those interested, weather permitting — Groups will help record plants on the slope leading up to the peak.

Sun July 28
All participants head home!

Opportunistic program: Ever wondered if it was safe to stay an extra hour on a mountaintop while clouds developed overhead? Our mountain thunderstorm expert, Jim Bishop, will take advantage of any developing weather to teach the group about thunderstorm development and prediction.

Map and Directions:

From Big Pine, CA:  At the junction of highway 395 and California highway 168 at Big Pine, drive east on highway 168 into the White Mountains. About 13 miles from 395 at Westgard Pass, turn north (left) onto the White Mountain Road. The White Mountain Road is paved and its intersection with highway 168 is marked with a sign. Once on White Mountain Road, drive north for about 10 miles on pavement. At Schulman Grove, about 10 miles from highway 168, the pavement ends, and the dirt road is passable by passenger cars but can be washboarded with sharp rocks. Drive slowly to avoid flat tires.  Continue north another 9 miles until the junction with the road to Crooked Creek. This junction is marked with a sign. Turn right and drive 1 mile east on this road to the Crooked Creek station.

It is a good idea to fill up your car with gas in either Bishop or Big Pine.

Printable, PDF Directions

More travel information on the WMRC webpages