Klickitat County Highpoint Trip Report
Date: July 2, 2006
This effort was part of a larger journey
collecting Idaho, Montana, and Washington county highpoints in late June and early July 2006.
Klickitat County was a thankless effort with virtually no saving grace -
Author: Adam Helman
For the hike itself I started southeast to access the north-south ridge north of the twin highpoints,
gaining perhaps 400 feet in short order.
I then walked on relatively level ground due south, cross-country, until finding a good dirt road
leading generally in the direction of the highpoint area! If you locate this road (again, not on the map),
it will save you many minutes of slow, tedious bushwhacking.
I arrived at the Indian Rock benchmark; briefly enjoyed the view south; and then headed some
500 feet east-northeast to a fifteen foot tall rock outcrop that is most certainly the second
possible highpoint. I assume that previous county highpointers ascended these rocks for complete credit.
Finishing my 24 county highpointing trip at Klickitat County was quite disappointing.
- The main, gravel and dirt approach road leading west from Satus Pass
is in very bad shape from Route 97 to west of Simcoe Butte.
It is rocky in the extreme, with particularly bad stretches when the road climbs.
One cannot drive this road slowly enough to lower the risk of tire puncture.
- The USGS maps do not contain all the relevant roads after leaving the
main, dirt approach road described above.
- Turning right instead of left at a critical road junction not shown on the maps,
I found myself 700 meters north and 500 feet below where I had wanted to start the hike.
I thus began my ascent roughly
Note how this location has no road on the USGS map - and yet I was on a perfectly good road
The junction is mentioned briefly in Edward Earl's report, and is located about two miles
west of Simcoe Butte just before one enters the coniferous forest.
Evidently to remain on-course for the approach drive, bear left at this junction.
- I hiked mid-afternoon, the temperature near 90 degrees F. On the bushwhacking descent to my vehicle,
I was attacked by swarms of mosquitoes attracted to the odor of both tee-shirt and myself.
The next day I counted dozens of bites from literally head to toe.
Edward Earl reports a similar problem from 2000.