Thursday, May 4, 2023

Mine Peak - 5/2/23

Jerry and Cheryl on Mine Peak (Charleston Peak in Background)

Mine Peak from Approach

Searching for a way to climb Summit Block on Mine Peak

Road to Trailhead

If you're like me, you've wandered around on Google Earth and, perhaps you've come across the charcoal kilns on the west side of Wheeler Pass. Well, Jerry and Cheryl drove out that way from SR 160 and passed by the historic kilns. Not much to see since the forest service has erected a substantial fence around them. See photos below.

Jerry and Cheryl took "Big Guy" (the XTerra) all the way to the Mine Peak trailhead located ~17 miles from SR 160. The kilns were about 15.5 miles from SR 160 and the trailhead was another mile up from that. Both the kilns and the trailhead are found on Rt. 52 North. 

Mine Peak was a hike up a gentle ridge that got steeper as we went. We came to the summit block (a very interesting rock formation that had numerous craggy pinnacles) and ran into a dilemma of how to get up and through to the summit. We tried to scramble in two different spots. Both were class 4 and had very loose rocks and lots of dirt. We ended up down climbing on some dicey stuff and kept searching. Finally we found a fairly solid class 3 spot and scrambled up to the summit. From the peak we thought there could be a class 2 gully but weren’t sure if it went so we descended the same way we went up. As Jerry was going down the trickier place a rock broke off in his hand. Geez we hate when that happens! Fortunately he had a good other hand and a foot and we made it down. From there it was just a hike back to the vehicle. 

Short Visit to Historic Charcoal Kilns

Ascending a Ridge

Bushwhacking along Ridge

Path of Least Resistance!
Coming back from Mine Peak we passed a group camping about 100 yards from our vehicle when a large pit bull charged us! I picked up a rock and yelled “No!” and he stopped in his tracks. The people didn’t seem concerned! No one ran to grab him. They called him back. We started to walk away but he turned back and charged again! We froze again as he crouched and growled. Finally he turned and trotted back where the owners decided to tie him up. Geez that was scarier than down climbing those class 4s with lots of loose rock!     ~ Cheryl (I love dogs. I really do.)

So, I guess that was J&C's wild animal story for the day!

Stats: 4.7 miles; 1300' gain; 4 hours (of hiking)

Summit Block Approach

Panoramic Views from Summit

Starting the Descent a Different Way

No comments: