Ascent of Mount Wilson on 2012-12-15

Climber: James Morehouse

Others in Party:Lorraine Wajda
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Saturday, December 15, 2012
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:4x4 Vehicle
Peak:Mount Wilson
    Elevation:5445 ft / 1659 m

Ascent Trip Report

We started out around eight o'clock a.m. in windy and cloudy conditions. The storm from the day before and over night was only just beginning to move out of the Mount Wilson area, and off to the north and east it was still dark and snowing heavily in the Sheep Range, and other northern ranges. It was still snowing lightly on the higher elevations of Wilson, as well. I was following a trip report I'd printed and their directions took us up a steep, rocky slope and ultimately cliffed out, so we went back down to the drainage, found a chute that led up towards the ridgeline, losing about an hour in the process. The higher we got, the more snow was on the ground, and over 4500' it was pretty much covering everything. The false summit proved to be problematic, as it was completely snow covered, and any possible route through it was under cover. I finally made a climb up some nasty, snow and ice covered rocks complete with heavy brush to make it to the last saddle before the summit. I took the last hundred or so yards at full tilt in an effort to tag the summit and head right back down, as I knew we were likely to lose daylight long before getting back to the car. There was no register to be found, or if it was there, it was well hidden and I didn't have time to search it out. I think I might have been at the top for all of five minutes while I took two summit pictures, and headed back down. To avoid all the snowy rock of the false summit, I traversed down and around the false summit rocks, losing a couple of hundred feet of altitude that I had to regain to reach the ridgeline again. We made it out of the canyon before dark, but walked the remaining two miles back to the car with headlamps on.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3390 ft / 1032 m
    Total Elevation Loss:3390 ft / 1032 m
    Round-Trip Distance:9.2 mi / 14.8 km
    Grade/Class:Class 2
    Quality:5 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Open Country, Bushwhack, Snow on Ground, Scramble
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
    Weather:Drizzle, Cool, Breezy, Clear
Cold, snow on the ground, about 40 degrees.
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:3318 ft / 1011 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 3246 ft / 989 m; Extra: 72 ft / 21m
    Loss on way in:72 ft / 21 m
    Distance:4.6 mi / 7.4 km
    Route:Missouri Springs
    Start Trailhead:Wilderness Boundary off dirt road branching off Te  2199 ft / 670 m
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:3318 ft / 1011 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 3246 ft / 989 m; Extra: 72 ft / 21m
    Gain on way out:72 ft / 21 m
    Distance:4.6 mi / 7.4 km
    End Trailhead:2199 ft / 670 m

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