Bristol Bay Borough High Point Trip Report

Date: July 31, 2003
Author: Bob Packard

My long time friend, Patricia McCairen, and I flew from Vancouver to Anchorage to King Salmon which has a total of 14 miles of paved road. Cecil of C-Air in King Salmon took us in his Cessna 185 float plane to the mile long lake northeast of the HP. I jumped directly from the pontoon to shore and they left me, agreeing to return in 5 hours. A bull caribou was grazing nearby. The land is tundra, everything very green, free of trees.

My boots sunk into the vegetation about 6 inches with every step, a little like walking on a trampoline. Saw an arctic fox. I went west-southwest, then south to avoid the swampier areas. There are easily-avoided clumps of alders part way up and I got into some shoulder high grass, not hard to get through. Near the top, the ground got harder and the vegetation thinner. I was surprised to see a faint ATV trail going full length of the north-south ridge. Cecil told me that one can get an ATV out there from King Salmon only after the lakes and streams freeze, but that even that has now been ruled against.

I built a cairn (there are a few exposed rocks at the top) and left a register. Expansive 360 degree views from the top. One can see Naknek Lake 10 miles to the south and higher land in the Lake and Peninsula Borough to the east. I got back to the lake and had a nap during my 1.25 hour wait for Cecil and Patricia to return.

Trip statistics: 3.75 hours, 5 miles, 550 feet of elevation gain.

NOTE: Some of you might be interested in reading Patricia's book, Canyon Solitude, Seal Press, about her solo raft trip through the Grand Canyon. It has recently been translated into German. As far as we know, Patricia is the only woman to solo raft the full length of the Colorado through the Grand Canyon.