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Ascent of Sullivan Benchmark on 2019-03-21

Climber: Ben Lostracco

Others in Party:supported by Rose

Nasario driver.
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Thursday, March 21, 2019
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Summit:Car
Peak:Sullivan Benchmark
    Location:USA-Texas
    Elevation:115 ft / 35 m

Ascent Trip Report

All of my efforts to bag this Kennedy COHP over an 8 year period are noted in this one only TR.


VISIT #1 DATED 2011-01-20 ... Unsuccessful .... got only to the Mariposa Ranch Entrance on the north side.
We left Corpus Christi on TX44 W to TX281 S at town of Alice. At Falfurrias we traveled East on FM2191 following the directions in Scott Surgent's TR of 2001, hoping that conditions today would be different. At 5.3 miles east we turned right (S) on Mariposa (CR225), now a paved road, to the beautiful stone entrance "Mariposa Ranch" where we also had to abort. I agree with Scott that this approach will take you close to the HP area, and is probably the best route, assuming of course one has the permission.
A number of deer were grazing just inside the entrance by the guard office. The guard on duty couldn't help us, I would have to talk to his foreman (who was away for the day), Lucio Sanchez. ..... better still the owner of the 45,000 acre Mariposa Ranch who lives in Corpus Christi, Daniel Sullivan, (I'm not providing the telephone numbers).
I'll try to call Daniel before my next visit. From here we move on to Willacy County.
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VISIT #2 DATED 2017-02-19 ... unsuccessful .... main entrance once again.
We were in the area so what the heck, perhaps we'd be rewarded by a kindred spirit - wouldn't happen. Gate was wide open, today's guard was less informative than the first - no information, only to say that hunting season ends on Feb 28th, perhaps you can come back then and the guard on duty may help you ????. Suggested (like the first) that permission may not be granted and that for contacts we should look at "www.Mariposa Ranch.net"
I should note that prior to coming here I made an effort to call Daniel Sullivan a few times with no results. If there is another visit it will have to be with permission.
My gut feeling is, "I will have to become a big game hunter with a lot of money in order to access this one."???

UPDATE 1 DATED 2017-10-20
The Mariposa Ranch Web Site gave me the contact information for the ranch owner Daniel J Sullivan (sullivan@mariposaranch.net).
We exchanged emails. Daniel does not allow access during the busy hunting season, but said that he would consider access prior to October. I'm to get back to him with my request, sounds promising.
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VISIT #3 DATED 2019-03-21 .... a successful drive up with a short ridge walk, all thanks to the generosity of the landowner.

I once again contacted Daniel, this time authorizing today's visit. I didn't know what to expect as far as hiking to the HP.
Rose and I arrived at the Mariposa Entrance, the guard well aware of our visit, called ranch worker, Nasario, to drive me to the HP (????). Rose staying back.
Nasario, was able to drive right to the HP ridge (a treed ridge). A path led us 100 yds to the obvious HP - the Sullivan Benchmark sits 8 yds to the right-of-north on top of a 2' high pipe "USCG Survey Marker SULLIVAN 1953".
This is an awesome/unusual ridge for these very flat Brooks/Kenedy Counties. Its more like a vegetated sand dune with some large oak trees on top (most all horizontal caused by the heavy winds). Great views.
I should note that this ridge has seem numerous sloppy visitors in the past - a lot of garbage in the area (rusted cans, plastic bottles, trash). I reported this to Daniel.
Also Nasario was not aware of the HP, I did the navigation. He was extremely pleased with this finding, "This is cool, I'll have to tell the others."
I tipped Nasario for taking care of me, plus left a gift bag for Daniel as a token of a County High Pointer's appreciation.
We were in and out of the ranch in less than 2 hours. I should note that the driving distance to the HP from the entrance is abt 10 miles. This is one huge ranch.

I will end our "Winter Trip 2019" with 12 Texas Counties to go, and probably all "NOT DOABLE" - my TX COHP List will not get finished.

"PASSION AND HARD WORK IS THE KEY TO SUCCESS AND LIFE'S HAPPINESS."
Summary Total Data
    Route:drive up to ridge with 100 yds walk
    Trailhead:start at Mariposa Ranch Entrance  -9999 ft / -3047 m
    Route Conditions:
Bushwhack



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