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STATEMENTS SUPPORTING THE FORMAL NAMING OF SHARSMITH PEAK Back to Home page
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Sent: Friday, March 01, 2013 8:34 PM
Subject: name the peak
Please add us to the
list to committed supporters of this effort:
President Emeritus, Trust for Public Land
Volunteer Ranger Naturalist, Anza Borrego Desert State Park
The Rosens reside in Carmel,
California. They are in California's 17th Congressional District and their U.S. Representative is Sam Farr, whom they say knew Ansel
Adams well and may also have known Carl Sharsmith.
From: Jim Sano <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: RE: Sharsmith Peak proposal
email@example.com, "'Dick Ewart'" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tuesday, February 26, 2013, 1:39 AM
Bill asked that I respond to your email.
First, it is good to hear from you! I am amazed how this initiative is bringing
together so many of our former Yosemite colleagues and friends.
You may recall the notion of naming the highest peak south of White Mountain
after Carl first surfaced in the late 1970's when I was nominally Carl's
"supervisor." During my NPS tenure (1975-1986) the Tuolumne naturalists
offered an all-day naturalist led hike every day. Two of the hikes were in the
area of peak 12002 - the Skelton Lakes basin and the mines north of upper Gaylor
Lake. Dick Ewart and I informally talked a number of times about naming 12002
after Carl. Why? It is a peak easily viewed from the meadows, especially Puppy
Dome. And, it overlooks Carl's most beloved botanical area - the Dana Plateau
(the location where he discovered the plant that is named after him.) I fondly
remember escorting Carl with Dick on his last hike up to the Dana Plateau to see
the plant that is now named after him. I will try to unearth the priceless
photograph of Carl beaming when he reached the plateau.
If my memory serves me correctly Dick Ewart may have accompanied you on the
attempts to take Carl to 12002. I know Dick and I talked with Carl multiple
times about naming 12002 after him, as did others. One of the individuals that
comes to mind was a former Tuolumne visitor center interpreter Wilma Bowman ~
who took it upon herself to feed Carl a proper dinner throughout the summers. I
cannot recall Carl ever objecting to the suggestion.
I know of no data on whether naming a mountain increases the number of
visitors. I would venture to say that most peak baggers do not otherwise assign
much "significance" to peak 12002. But that's just a hunch on my part. Conness
is the major draw for hikers/climbers along this section of the crest. Those
who go out of their way to go off trail to climb White Mountain likely do so
without giving much thought to its name. The same is probably true for Gibbs as
well. Also, the vast majority of hikers and climbers are largely ignorant of
the history and significance of Yosemite's place names - many of which in the
Tuolumne region are named after US army officers, their wives, and assorted
geologists (e.g., I believe Conness never visited the Tuolumne area.) The
priority seems to be how high the mountain is...if the peak is in the top 3 or 5
in terms of height in the park...and lastly the shape of the peak.
At the end of the day I think we all agree that we want a lasting tribute to
Carl and his unmatched contributions to interpreting Yosemite's high country ~
before those who have first-hand knowledge of Carl fade into the sunset.
All the best,
James Sano| Vice President – Travel, Tourism, and Conservation
World Wildlife Fund
1250 24th St. NW Washington DC 20037
From: Dick Ewart [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Monday, March 04, 2013 9:45 PM
To: Jim Sano
Subject: RE: Sharsmith Peak proposal
Jim and Laurie,
Thanks for forwarding me your letters.
I remember that Carl was pretty excited about having peak 12002 named in his
I don't remember that other peaks were being considered, but that was entirely
He always responded with his humble enthusiasm when I talked about "his peak".
And I remember when Laurie, Margaret and I were camping up on his peak with him,
that he was in absolute heaven being close to his beloved alpine flowers in that
wet meadow. I also remember his excitement in anticipating a return to his peak
one last time, and he was saddened by the thought that he might not make it.
Whenever I talk about Carl to visitors today, which is quite often, I tell about
the trip we made up to his peak before he died, and what great final pleasure
that gave him.
If the peak does get named after Carl, will there be more people going to the
top. There might be an insignificant increase. But the people that remember
Carl are all getting old, so they will probably travel to the peak in their
Carl was expecting Peak 12002 to be named in his honor, and I would hate to
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