Ascent of Mendon Peak on 2020-08-30

Climber: Crystal Davis

Others in Party:Dan Petit
Date:Sunday, August 30, 2020
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Mendon Peak
    Elevation:3840 ft / 1170 m

Ascent Trip Report

Excellent hike. There were so many perfectly ripe blackberries lining the path within the first mile or so...this definitely slowed down our pace on both the ascent and descent. We followed the AllTrails trail up, we had to keep checking to make sure we were on the correct trail at junctions. We chose the wrong old logging path at one point and simply bushwhacked back down to the AllTrails path. We found SO many different kinds of mushrooms/fungi on the way up which made the so much more interesting. The path followed the brook and crossed it about 5 times I think, the water level was moderate, so the crossing weren't too bad. The steep switchback area was pretty neat. Also, finding the KSAR sled was a cool find deep in the woods. We lost the AllTrails path soon after we began bushwhacking. We were going through some of the thickest pines/brush we've yet encountered. Needless to say, the way up is what earned this hike a 'difficult' rating.

Near the top, we finally found a herd path and it took us right to the summit. Beautiful views from the viewpoint near the summit!! We saw one other herd path marked with flagging on the way up. On the way back down, we checked out the map and decided this path appeared to go in the general direction toward the car, it looked like it could bypass the steep stuff and go on the gentle slope down to the brook, so we decided to follow it. Holy crap, what an amazing find. This was definitely the express route down to the parking lot! Someone has put a lot of work into this trail. It was well marked and easy to follow. There were no water crossing and most of the blowdown had been taken care of.

Despite my AllTrails stopping and I didn't notice until about a mile down on our descent, I believe we shaved about an hour off our time and about a mile of hiking on the way down taking this route. The herd path rejoined the AllTrails path right at the first stream crossing at the 'Wheelerville Road 1.5 miles' sign. We actually had started to go up it because it is the most obvious path going up, but quickly realized we were off the AllTrails route and left it. If only we had known! I give the way down a 'moderate' ranking if you take this herd path.

Start from Bucklin Trailhead on the Wheelerville Road: 11:04AM
First stream crossing: 11:53AM
KSAR sled: 1:12PM
Herd path near summit: 2:02PM
Viewpoint: 2:07PM
Summit: 5.0 miles at 2:12PM
Back to viewpoint for lunch: 5.1 miles at 2:20PM
Headed down via herd path: 5.1 miles at 2:38PM
Noticed that my AllTrails stopped recording: 3:01PM
Back at AllTrails route / Eddy Brook: 3:48PM (So it took us 47 minutes to go down what took us 2 hours 19 minutes to ascend via AllTrails route)
Stop for blackberries: 4:10PM (About 10 minutes)
Car: 4:36PM
Total mileage according to Strava: 9.06 miles
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2052 ft / 625 m
    Total Elevation Loss:2052 ft / 625 m
    Round-Trip Distance:9.1 mi / 14.6 km
    Quality:8 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Unmaintained Trail, Bushwhack
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles, Animal/Pet
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:2052 ft / 625 m
    Distance:5 mi / 8 km
    Route:AllTrails route, then bushwhack
    Start Trailhead:Bucklin Trailhead on Wheelerville Road  1788 ft / 544 m
    Time:3 Hours 8 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:2052 ft / 625 m
    Distance:4.1 mi / 6.5 km
    Route:Herd path to AllTrails route
    End Trailhead:Bucklin Trailhead on Wheelerville Road  1788 ft / 544 m
    Time:1 Hours 58 Minutes

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