Ascent of Bunker Hill on 2019-09-21

Climber: Jerry Thomas

Others in Party:Cheryl Thomas
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Saturday, September 21, 2019
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:4x4 Vehicle
Peak:Bunker Hill
    Elevation:11473 ft / 3496 m

Ascent Trip Report

We drove up highway 376 to Kingston Canyon road. We followed the road through the tiny village of Kingston and it turns to dirt shortly after leaving the town. From here the road is NFD 002 or Kingston Creek road. This road was a joy to drive on having climbed Mount Jefferson the day before. NFD 002 is well maintained and we were able to go 40 mph on most of it. You pass Kingston Campground where you could stay if you want to camp. You then soon pass a reservoir called Groves Lake. The road gets a little rougher here but is still fairly nice. There are some large mud puddles and water on the road to negotiate until you reach Basin Canyon. The turn off to Basin Canyon road is difficult to see as the Basin Canyon road is almost grown over. You should have a waypoint to find it. See Kyle Wilson's trip report earlier this month for a waypoint to this junction. You must drive steeply down across a stream and then steeply up and to the right to get on this road. We drove past it and had to find someplace to turn around to get to it. The Basin Canyon road is almost disappearing into the brush but yet its not as bad as NFD 010 to Mount Jefferson trail head. Drive up this road until you see a clearing on the left or a little bit farther up the road there is a clearing where the road ends. Where the road ends is where the old Basin Canyon trail used to start. We found the start of the old trail and followed it up and to the left on the first switchback up the hill. Shortly, however, the trail disappears and we missed the switchback going to the right. We tried to pick up the trail on the way up the hill but the trail has deteriorated so much that you might as well just climb straight up. As we neared the top of the hill we picked up the trail again for a short distance. At the top of the ridge you can pick up some animal tracks that follow the ridge up. After a bit you will see the trail again. We followed the trail around a sub peak on the ridge and then followed the switchback on the trail until we were on the ridge above the sub peak. Here the ridge becomes very large and rounded with plenty of scrub bushes. We followed what remains of the trail and then animal tracks until we were just hiking in open country. It was easy to hike up in between the small scrub bushes here even though the ridge starts to get steep. The route follows the spine of the broad ridge up and to the right where there is a saddle just before the terrain becomes very steep and quite rocky at about 10,600 ft. At this point if you inspect the side of the mountain you will see a faint trail going up and off diagonally to the right. This trail became a godsend since without it you would have to scramble up a steep talus slope. We followed this cairned trail all the way until we were above the talus and back on firm ground. From here we followed a GPS track but the route at this point becomes obvious. Soon you reach a peak with communications equipment on it and you realize you have to dip down and go back up to yet another sub peak with communications gear on it and then traverse a short ridge line until you finally reach the actual summit. Altogether, a pleasant hike with the trail through the talus. It was a tad steep and my calves were very sore afterwards.
Click on photo for original larger-size version.
Bunker Hill from the broad ridge (2019-09-21). Photo by Jerry Thomas.
Click here for larger-size photo.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3397 ft / 1034 m
    Total Elevation Loss:3397 ft / 1034 m
    Round-Trip Distance:5.9 mi / 9.5 km
    Grade/Class:class 1
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
    Weather:Cool, Breezy, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:3335 ft / 1016 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 3284 ft / 1000 m; Extra: 51 ft / 15m
    Loss on way in:51 ft / 15 m
    Distance:3 mi / 4.8 km
    Route:Basin Canyon trail
    Start Trailhead:8189 ft / 2496 m
    Time:3 Hours 22 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:3346 ft / 1019 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 3284 ft / 1000 m; Extra: 62 ft / 18m
    Gain on way out:62 ft / 18 m
    Distance:2.9 mi / 4.7 km
    Route:Basin Canyon trail
    End Trailhead:8189 ft / 2496 m
    Time:2 Hours 41 Minutes
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Jerry Thomas
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

Other Photos

Click on photo for original larger-size version.
Cheryl on the broad ridge up to Bunker Hill (2019-09-21). Photo by Jerry Thomas.
Click here for larger-size photo.

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