Ascent of Washington County High Point on 2011-06-15

Climber: Ben Lostracco

Others in Party:supported by Rose
Date:Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Washington County High Point
    Location:USA-Rhode Island
    Elevation:567 ft / 172 m

Ascent Trip Report

I had Dave Covill's TR of 2000 in my source of information, eleven years have passed since so conditions on the ground have changed somewhat ..... no more clearing only dense tall woods, impossible to do any eye-leveling, the junk (cars, tires) still there however. This is one huge flat area densely forested, trying to find a highpoint here is like trying to find a needle in a haw stack. I attempted this highpoint from both the east and west side (hwy 3 and Black Plain Road). I gave it my best shot.

We approached from the north, Hwy I95 exit 5, we drove hwy 102 to 103 south to Austin Farm Road on the right (at the north end of the area in question).

EAST SIDE APPROACH .... We first went to the east side, we continued south on hwy 3 to a dirt driveway on the right, with mailbox #247 and #243 on either side. This area obviously lower in elevation as you look back (north) on the hwy.
We drove the driveway west 75 yards and went up to the house on the left, on the right at 100 yards another house with 3 huge dogs tied to trees. They never stopped barking. The friendly, 75 year old, Jeannette Whittier had no problem with me stomping her back yard. Her house is number #243A, the other belongs to her son and is #243B. She lost her husband after they purchased this property back in 1987, she owns 15 acres of the back woods to the north.
I bushwacked 50 yards west behind her house then zig-zagged my way north 200-300 yards, a definite sense I walked up hill from House #243A. I could see houses east or west of my line. When I got towards the top end of my bushwack a man approached from hwy 3 side, he was from house #211 and wanted know what I was doing.
On my return I touched different ground looking for high ground. I finally chose a spot near a large rotting bus, my GPS read 41.58809, 71.65326 (perhaps 200 yards from hwy 3), very close to the PB coordinates and somewhat behind house #211.
From the bus a good woods track led generally south so I followed it directly to house #243B, of course I didn't go there because of the vicious looking dogs. There is a lot of junk inside the woods.
We left this area after thanking Jeannette, and went back up the hwy to house #211 and had a long chat with the friendly Virginia and Roy James. They weren't up to speed on Highpointing and therefore very interested. I would suggest asking at this house to access this area, a lot shorter walk. House #247 area in my opinion is lower.

WEST SIDE APPROACH ..... We drove west on Austin Farm Road .25 miles to a left on Black Plain Road to mailbox #92, there was no one home. An unposted grass track exists between #92 and #97, so I decided to approach from here. We parked here, this was my TH.
I followed the track east about 150 yards to the area near the Communication Tower where it curves left and ends north a short distance, lot of junk and piles of tires. An obscure herd path continues/winds north, gets better, goes past the reported berms (I don't think natural) and eventually takes you right to house #243A on hwy 3 (perhaps 300-400 yards from Tower).
On my return I did some bushwacking further to the west looking for higher ground, and eventually got back to my TH. My sense told me that the highground does not exist in this area but rather in the PB location. Of course I could be wrong.
When I got back to the TH a man, Mr Hamel, on a lawn mower wanted to know what I was doing, he immigrated to the USA when he was a tot and spoke some French. We had a long chat on a number of subjects (some in French). People go back in there to dump their garbage. The land behind is owned by the lady at #97, in the old days the whole area was a car wreck dump.

'COME BACK AGAIN WHEN YOU CAN'T STAY SO LONG.' ..... Canadian saying for farewells.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:17 ft / 5 m
    Round-Trip Distance:1.2 mi / 2 km
    Route:bushwack from hwy 3 and black plain road
    Trailhead:hwy 3 and black plain road  550 ft / 167 m
    Route Conditions:
Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Bushwhack
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Partly Cloudy

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