Ascent of Marion Mountain on 2012-05-27

Climber: James Barlow

Others in Party:Aidan Barlow
Date:Sunday, May 27, 2012
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Marion Mountain
    Elevation:10362 ft / 3158 m

Ascent Trip Report

Following our ascent of Jean Peak, Aidan and I picked our way SSW to Marion Mtn. There are a few rock obstacles on the ridge which are easily bypassed to the west. The saddle between the two peaks is a very broad, flat area, completely free of undergrowth - a prefect pine forest. Marion Mtn has a "false" summit to the east which is the point marked as 10,362 on the topo map. However, the HPS peak is to the west atop a fun summit block. We covered the false summit first, for no reason really, since it has little prominence even if it is higher than the HPS peak. From the false summit, we headed west to the dead tree indicated in the HPS write-up and made our way up the series of cracks to the summit. This was Aidan's favorite peak of the day due to the class 3 scramble to the summit. Again, no register awaited us. We relaxed on the summit for a bit, taking in the view and eating a snack. From the summit we headed back to the saddle south of Jean Peak. Here is where a different descent route begins. The standard route up the peak is either via the ridge from Jean as we did the peak, or from Wellman Cienega, at 9,200 ft. Not wanting to drop to 9,200 ft, just to regain Wellman Divide at 9,700 ft, I thought we could just contour around to Wellman Divide. Foolishly, we began this traverse. Soon, we were in knee-deep brush not having any fun at all. We definitely saved some descent, but it probably wasn't worth it in exchange for the bushwhacking. We hit the trail just below 9,600 ft and took the well-used trail up to Wellman Divide where we encountered the first human contact we had since the short trail segment between Folly and Newton Drury. From Wellman Divide, we made the short walk back to camp in Round Valley and called it a day. For future hikers, just follow one of the standard routes from Marion to Jean Peak or Wellman Cienega. The attempted countour traverse to Wellman Divide was a total failure...

The next morning, we were out of peaks to climb, but still had a full day off, so we played hide and seek around camp for a few hours before packing up and eating lunch. The idea of heading up Luella Todd Peak crossed my mind, but it is within the Hidden Divide Natural Preserve. Since it is off-limits not due to private landowners who are assholes (which would have prompted my immediate stealth ascent), we stayed away since it is preserving nature for generations to come. We took the Round Valley loop back to the tram, passing just north of this peak and enjoying a leisurely stroll back to civilization where we encountered fat people in flip flops who shouldn't be in the mountains to begin with. Aidan and I had fun passing them on the uphill walk to the tram with our full packs on, watching them struggle just to breathe. That's right, you were just passed on an uphill stretch by a 9 year old with a full pack on.... Pics from the whole weekend.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:282 ft / 85 m
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:282 ft / 85 m
    Route:NE Ridge to E Ridge
    Start Trailhead:10080 ft / 3072 m
Descent Statistics
Ascent Part of Trip: San Jacinto '12 (2 nights total away from roads)

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Cornell Peak2012-05-261350 ft / 411 m
2Miller Peak2012-05-27 a1240 ft / 378 m
3San Jacinto Peak2012-05-27 b439 ft / 134 m
4Folly Peak2012-05-27 c100 ft / 30 m
5Newton Drury Peak2012-05-27 d160 ft / 49 m
6Jean Peak2012-05-27 e670 ft / 204 m
7Marion Mountain2012-05-27 f282 ft / 86 m
Total Trip Gain: 4241 ft / 1292 m
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by James Barlow
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

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