Grand County High Point Trip Report

Mount Waas (12,331 ft)

Date: August 17, 2002
Author: Michael Schwartz

Use Martin/Roach reports, rather than "High in Utah," unless you are partial to 5,000+ feet ascents. Mileage in the Roach report is very accurate. Note that when turning "left" onto Castleton-Gateway Road you are actually continuing straight ahead. Once on that road, the pavement ends after 5.5 miles. On the Beaver Basin spur road, I measured 1.4 miles to where a seemingly lesser road bears right uphill opposite a large cleared area. I'm sure this is the point mentioned (quite correctly) as a suggested parking spot for 2WD vehicles. The road straight ahead (left) goes nowhere. Once on the 4WD road, I was able to drive another 3.9 miles to a very sharp switchback to the right, guarded by a couple of scary boulders. There is room to park and turn around at the switchback, and I did same.

At this point, you are well up into Beaver Basin, with Mt. Waas and its neighbors in plain view. Mt. Waas is almost due north, with a narrow saddle to the left and Peak (spot elevation) 12,16x, the one with the radio tower, to the left of the saddle. Hike cross country northwest up the valley toward the saddle, then follow a good use path northeast (right) through steep talus to the summit.

Great views. Only found one BM. At the top, a flock of either white throated swifts (my guess) or violet green swallows were performing aerobatics, often swooping within inches of my head. They were so close I could hear the wind whistling across their wings. The 4WD road gets pretty ugly in spots, and looks to get very little use above logging areas passed not too far up from the bottom. About half way up, I had to saw an overhanging fallen tree that was blocking the road.

1 hour 30 minutes up and 55 minutes down.