Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Boundary Peak 09-16-10

Boundary Peak - 13,147'
Esmeralda NV county high point & NV state high point

Late last year I decided that I’d take a shot at the lottery for a day use pass for Mt Whitney. After getting one I came up with a tentative plan to hike (and as always do some running) the highpoints in adjoining Nevada and Arizon. Armed with maps and trip reports and an aggressive itinerary I met up with teammates Eric M, Dan V, Rod V, Hungarian mountain guide Robert M, and long-time friend Doug D.

We used Covills TR from 2003 and headed for the Queen’s Canyon approach to Boundary. The forest access road was actually 2 miles (exactly) from the CA/NV border (not the 1 mile mentioned in the TR). We had some slight trouble as it was pitch dark at 6 AM and we checked out a big water tower before heading to the correct location. The very small water tank with “JR” written on it has fallen over, but the marking was visible and (what’s left of) the Ranch is now up for sale. Anyway, after we found it we made our way up the dirt road.

We could not drive the entire distance to the trailhead. Although we had SUV’s, neither were four-wheel-drive and despite Doug’s multiple efforts we could not clear and especially steep section. Fortunately there is a nice flat section right before it, so we pulled off and parked.

We didn’t mind the extra hike on the dirt road; it just meant a little more run-able terrain (for the return trip). It took us 22 minutes to reach the trailhead. I really enjoyed the next part to the saddle. The conditions were perfect – sunny and not too hot. We all hiked in shorts and long sleeve t-s to start then went short sleeves by the time we hit the saddle (1:43).

The tough climbing began after that. I found a couple of parts to be what I classify as “scary” (some would classify me as a weenie). I had a little trouble on the rockier stuff, trying to find a decent grip and keep panic at bay. We hit the summit in 3:41, then spent 20 minutes on top taking pictures and signing the log book.
Just below the tougher stuff

I felt a lot more comfortable on the descent. That seemed odd to me, usually descending is trickier…go figure. Eric and Rod blasted ahead once we hit the scree slope but they waited for us in the saddle. It took us 1:22 to descend to the saddle and another 1:19 to get back to the car for a total time of 4:34 (including the 20 minutes on top). Eric, Rod, and I finished a bit earlier as we ran the last 2 miles or so and then we finished out the visit to Boundary with a 6+ mile run down to Highway 6. It was hot and we were tired but it was a fine end to the day.
The long road in

Over 100 pictures = http://doubledmountainrunner.shutterfly.com/1869

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