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Ascent of Bear Knob on 2017-06-25

Climber: Dennis Stewart

Date:Sunday, June 25, 2017
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Bear Knob
    Location:USA-Minnesota
    Elevation:1620 ft / 493 m

Ascent Trip Report

Nels Olson still owns the Douglas County highpoint, but he was not home when I arrived. His sister seemed a bit hesitant to grant me permission to climb, but after a brief conversation she agreed, but wanted to join me for most of the climb. I felt badly because I was sprayed down with insect repellant and I watched over 20 ticks quickly accumulate on the back of my tour guide's white jeans. I only found 2 ticks on myself, but an hour later I picked two more ticks off of my neck when I was at the counter of a nearby motel, which was a bit embarrassing. When we reached some rather tall vegetation I was left to climb on my own and I had a difficult time following the correct route. The address for the trailhead to Bear Knob is 20684 Parkers Road. From here I believe it was only .5 air miles to the summit, but I covered much more distance than that. There is a network of ATV trails on Bear Knob and my GPS lost signal several times without any trail I found taking me to my goal. Finally, when I regained a good GPS signal, I began bushwhacking directly to the highpoint, but my entire ascent took a long 32 minutes. Of course, there was no view on the tree covered summit. I started my return to the car by bushwhacking again not realizing a descent trail was just a few dozen feet away from me but blocked from view by vegetation. With my GPS losing signal again, ironically 12 minutes later, I found myself ascending a steep trail that returned me back on the summit! The good news this time was I had finally located the actual ascent trail, so it was fairly easy to find the correct trails to return back to my car in 22 minutes. Many of the ATV trails I traveled on were overgrown and had some fallen trees across them. At a different time of the year you probably would not have the difficult time I did. On my original hike in, I probably passed right by the correct ascent trail without even realizing it. My thanks go to the Olson Family for continuing to allow adventurers like me access to their property, even though I made this highpoint much more difficult than it should have been.
Summary Total Data
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Bushwhack



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