Ascent of Jade Benchmark on 2020-02-18
|Date:||Tuesday, February 18, 2020|
|Ascent Type:||Successful Summit Attained|
| Motorized Transport to Trailhead:||Car|
| Elevation:||3587 ft / 1093 m|
Ascent Trip ReportTrailhead is a few miles east of Jacumba Hot Springs, past the gliderport. There is a shade structure on the right-hand, south side of Old Highway 80. On the left, or north side is a turnout that leads to a dirt frontage road. Some heavy-duty work lights are parked there. Down below you can see a break check operation and Interstate 8 beyond that.
The mountain is a cone-shaped with a rock pile on top. There is an ancient road that leads about halfway up the peak. The path is pretty benign as the chollas, beavertails, and Spanish bayonets are spread out enough to climb unmolested. The peak itself is an interesting little scramble with a 360-degree view of the flat desert, solar farm, power substation, flats, roads, and nearby mountains. The obvious high point is, indeed the peak. Facing south, there is a crevice with a register lodged between two interlocking tin cans. I may have been a little zealous in covering the register for safety, but you can find it if you lift the rocks.
The benchmark was a bit of a challenge. I tried matching the blue dot with the brown dot and found myself wandering all over the mountain. I eventually found it, quite battered and looking like someone had tried to steal it. It is a bit down from the peak if you orient yourself toward the microwave towers on the next mountain.
Trip down was easy. You can see your car from the peak and meander through the bushes until you hit bottom.
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