Rich County High Point Trip Report

near Swan Peak

Date: May 25, 2003
Author: Edward Earl

About 2 miles west of Bear Lake Summit on US 89 is the signed junction with Swan Flat Road, a narrow but well-graded gravel Forest Service road. The turnoff is about 1/2 mile east of a snowplow storage facility. For the first 2 miles, the road was clear and dry, but then it became mostly covered in snow when it entered the forest.

I parked my rented Ford Focus soon before this and walked the remaining 1.5 miles "point 8322" just south of Swan Flat, where a trail branches off to the east, dips 60 feet to cross a ravine, and heads uphill on the other side. I had intended to use this trail, but because of warm temperatures and heavy snow pack, the stream at the bottom of the ravine was flowing too swiftly to ford safely.

So I had to revert to plan B. I walked upstream, hoping to get up far enough to where it would diminish sufficiently I could somehow get across. After rounding the spur just to the north, I saw a snowdrift extending across the stream, with the stream flowing under the drift. I grabbed a couple of five-foot fallen branches to use as probes, and gingerly approached the drift, making sure it was thick enough to hold my weight. As I got closer, I realized that the "drift" was really just a berm where Swan Flat Road crosses the stream, and the water was flowing through a pipe under the berm. Once across the water, I headed east up the steep brushy hillside, then less steep through open forest, directly to the unnamed 9255-foot high point of Rich county. Broken views of Bear Lake could be had from the mostly forested summit.

The register contained many familiar names as well as some names of possible completers not yet known in our group. Kim and Darlene Robinson of Roy UT signed in on September 1st 2001, stating that they had 17 UT cohps so far and intended to complete the state. Steve Burton of Salt Lake City signed in on July 19th 2002 and said he had 20 so far.