Ascent of Bears Head on 2011-08-06

Climber: Dennis Stewart

Date:Saturday, August 6, 2011
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Bears Head
    Elevation:2094 ft / 638 m

Ascent Trip Report

It was raining heavily as I drove to Bears Head, but by the time I reached the access gate the rain had slowed to barely a drizzle. I didn't even need my poncho. It was a pleasant 1/2 mile hike to the summit, but the highest point appeared to be behind a high chain link fence protecting the summit communication towers. My GPS, however, showed the summit landmark to be about 100 feet to the west in a thick tangle of vegetation. I entered the jungle only to discover that the area was lower than the highest point behind the fence. It was an unpleasant experience wandering around in the vegetation and my pants and boots got soaking wet, which was very uncomfortable the rest of the day. I ended up walking around the summit fence in order to claim the county highpoint according to highpointing rules. There was even a fine firetower trapped behind the fence and it made me mad to think that federal tax dollars probably paid for the tower and now it sits unused behind an expensive fence that was probably paid for with my tax money as well. The lack of any vistas from the summit of Bears Head without access to the tower did not improve my mood! When I returned to my car, I discovered that the gate was not even locked. I could have opened it and drove right to the top of Bears Head, but at least, I was able to check off another county highpoint.
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