Klickitat County High Point Trip Report

Date: April 12, 2003
Author: Bob Bolton

On "Mt. St. Helens Day" 2003, Dean Molen and I met at the junction of US97 and I-84. We took the 4Runner north on 97 to Satus Pass. The weather was warming and clearing, but big clouds still hovered over the mountains and we expected to get wet. The road from Satus Pass was rough much of the way and there were occasional mud puddles and snow banks to negotiate. At one point the road went to the north side of the ridge and was buried in deep snow but a 4WD track led up the bare hogback, so I coaxed the machine up the hill in low range and managed to avoid the deep ruts. After rejoining the main road for a short distance, it again became deeply buried after we plowed through a couple of good-sized snow banks and finally I was forced to park.

From there the GPS said it was 2.5 crow miles to the HP, and it was already 2:30 pm, so we hastily headed up the road on perfect, firm snow. After awhile, it started snowing little ice pellets and continued doing so for most of the hike toward the HP. We followed the GPS south from where the road turns east until we came to the end of the plateau. There we found the BM just as the sun burst through the clearing skies. We tromped all over the area, then headed east toward the rock outcropping that is supposed to be about 10 feet higher. From the top of the rocks it was hard to tell if we were higher than the first area, but at least we had visited both.

Then on our way back toward the snow-buried road we saw another rock standing about as high as the trees, and scrambled up onto it. This was after we had dropped some from the original area, so it didn't seem as high. Someday I want to return to the area when the snow is gone so as to visit the intersection of 46°N and 121°W just a few miles west of the HP.