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Ascent of Brushy Sky High on 2013-12-20

Climber: Dan Phillips

Date:Friday, December 20, 2013
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Brushy Sky High
    Location:USA-California
    Elevation:3196 ft / 974 m

Ascent Trip Report

I had been interested in attempting this peak but hadn't mustered the energy to try out Daryn Dodge's route up Rocky Creek. I then saw Bob Burd's successful account of heading up the old BLM trail in November 2013 (http://www.snwburd.com/bob/trip_reports/brushy_sky_high_1.html ). Apparently the trail up the ridge is only badly overgrown in a few sections.

Accordingly, I left the Redbud trailhead around 8 AM with some clippers. The old trail up to the peak is marked with a brown sign ("Brushy Mountain, 4 miles") on the right just after the Redbud trail first crosses Cache Creek. (The true distance from the sign is closer to 5.5 miles).

The beginning of the trail is not always distinct with many game and use trails crisscrossing, but it is open and easy going for a bit under a mile just sticking to the ridge. Then the first serious brush section begins. Bob had cleared enough space to get through, but his tolerance for bushwhacking was clearly higher than mine, and I still lost the trail a few times as I cut and pushed through myself. The trail generally hangs to the ridgetop or the right side of it going up, cutting through dense chapparal rather than getting near the tempting trees just to the east. The views along the ridge much of the way up are spectacular.

I did a substantial amount of clearing that should make the lower part of the trail quite passable. I didn't have the energy to do such a complete job in a few other heavy brushy areas above, but nonetheless the trail shouldn't need to be considered a bushwhack for the moment. As Darren mentioned, eventually the trail opens right out into an old road and a final sustained steep rise to the summit.

I reached the summit around 2:30 PM and left a new register at the cairn in a mason jar. Gorgeous views, but I had to turn right around. Back to the trailhead in the dark around 6:15.
Summary Total Data
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail



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