San Benito County High Point Trip Report

San Benito Mountain

Date: February 1, 2004
Author: Robert Greene

I took the non-standard south approach since I was in King City. This is County Road G13 to Highway 25, 25 to Coalinga. Mapquest claims that Coalinga road is gated, but I didn't see any gates. Coalinga is a nice road, well paved, but curvy. I'd rate it a 40M PH road due to fun twisties. Found the Clear Creek Road turnoff. Mapquest doesn't say anything about this road! It's not a real road, it's a dirt road through the Clear Creek off road vehicle park. Now I see why everyone was taking the north approach. R001 (the park name for Clear Creek) is about 14 miles long, and 9 miles from the south entrance. And it's a fun 9 miles. I counted 10 creek crossings. Mud, holes. I rate this road 15MPH due to excessive craters.

I eventually reached the junction of R001 and R010, which I determined would be my hike start point. R001 was actually closed beyond that intersection, and a detour suggested taking R010. R010 also turned into a mud pit about 1,000 feet farther though. The ridge hike from R001/R010 was pretty straightforward along off road vehicle roads, essentially all the way to the top. Didn't find any summit register (as usual). I did find the official marker, in some stones that were about 30 feet north of a much larger stone pile. So I stepped on the BM and then climbed up the larger rock structure and sat on top of that, just in case.

I guess the BM trumps, but my GPS showed 5,220 feet at the highest point near the BM, and 5,258 feet on the highest point on the rock pile; with GPS WAAS accuracy, and assuming worse case, this would still put a 18-foot height difference between the two.

Webmaster's comment - Civilian GPS-based elevation estimates are not as accurate as official USGS survey measurements. Please do not consider a GPS-based elevation reading as gospel.