Ascent of Inferno Cone on 2011-07-15

Climber: William Musser

Others in Party:Karen Musser
Date:Friday, July 15, 2011
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Inferno Cone
    Elevation:6181 ft / 1883 m

Ascent Trip Report

Public acces from the parking area where the road climbs the saddle between this volcanic cone and Paisley Cone and makes it far too easy to climb. I debated having my wife drop me off down lower on the road but she was anxious to do the volcanic lava caves and so was I so, we joined our group from her conference (teachers learning about nuclear science) and slogged up the hill. Sadly, this is what the public wants? a short hike up for a view?

Despite the rediculously easy ascent (in terms of distance and vertical gain it was at least a steep ascent on loose volcanic sand. Many of the folks we watched were not in shape at all and they breathed hard traveling up this 0.2 mile 150 foot gain hike. so I guess they do need provide set hikes like this. The Park calls this hike "Stenuous" not easy or moderate but strenuous. Five minutes? Later that week my wife and climbed Mount Borah - 9 miles and 5,400 feet gain. What would the national park call that? It is a sad when our national parks accept that the American public is this unhealthy and rates this trail as stenuous.

Still, the cone had nice views, but you share the top with like 15 people - yuck. If we had more time I would have climbed some of the other more remote cones in the park. I did climb Sunset Cone on the other side of the road (see that trail report).

This Inferno Cone was at least interesting almost devoid of any vegetation and covered in black volcanic sand which is kind of interesting and some of the rocks had sparkling gold and green colors in the pumice texture which we debated as to the mineralology. Copper? Pyrite? I voted for the middle ground of Chalcopyrite as that requires iron copper sulfide. Ha!
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:151 ft / 46 m
    Round-Trip Distance:0.4 mi / 0.6 km
    Trailhead:Parking Lot paved  6030 ft / 1837 m
    Grade/Class:1 but steep
    Quality:3 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Unmaintained Trail
    Weather:Hot, Calm, Clear
Sunny and hot
Ascent Statistics
    Time:5 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Time:5 Minutes

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