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Ascent of Cave Hill on 2014-12-12

Climber: Richard Oestreicher

Other People:Solo Ascent
Only Party on Mountain
Date:Friday, December 12, 2014
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Cave Hill
    Location:USA-Illinois
    Elevation:923 ft / 281 m

Ascent Trip Report

The best hike of my trip so far. A ridge with a listed elevation of 923 doesn't sound like much, but this one has boulders and cliffs along its west flank reminiscent of much more rugged parts of the country, an isolated near wilderness around it, and fine views. I didn't find any trip reports and my map did not make it obvious where I might find the best access. I spent a while driving roads around it before I found my way to Eagle Mountain Road--a rough track with some washed away spots OK for my Jeep but maybe problematic for low hanging cars. I got to it from the main Shawnee Forest Road to Horseshoe Rd., then Stoneface. Eagle Mountain was labeled Fire Road on my map but the narrow track has an Eagle Mountain sign. Less than a mile up, I found a sign for trail D122.

The trail heads downhill slightly into a hollow between the Eagle Mountain ridge and Cave Hill. The trail avoids the boulders and cliff by skirting around to the north end of the hill where's there's an easy ascent up. This creates a dogleg that I bushwhacked across on my way up, but followed coming back. I lost the trail a couple of times, but it's mostly free enough of deadfall and underbrush to qualify as a maintained trail.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:432 ft / 131 m
    Total Elevation Loss:169 ft / 51 m
    Round-Trip Distance:2.3 mi / 3.7 km
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Bushwhack
    Weather:Pleasant, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:323 ft / 98 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 263 ft / 80 m; Extra: 60 ft / 18m
    Loss on way in:60 ft / 18 m
    Distance:1 mi / 1.6 km
    Start Trailhead:Eagle Creek Road  660 ft / 201 m
    Time:27 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:109 ft / 33 m
    Gain on way out:109 ft / 33 m
    Distance:1.3 mi / 2.1 km
    Time:38 Minutes



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