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Ascent to Brunswick County High Point-5 areas on 2015-01-03

Climber: Ben Lostracco

Others in Party:supported by Rose
see my TR
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Saturday, January 3, 2015
Ascent Type:Unsuccessful - Turned Back
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Point Reached:Brunswick County High Point - 5 areas
    Location:USA-North Carolina
    Elevation:70 ft / 21 m
    Remaining Elevation:5 ft / 1 m (6% left to go)

Ascent Trip Report

This County has 14 Candidate High Point Areas, requiring more than one visit. I will have this one only TR, amended after each visit. I have numbered the 14 Areas in accordance with PB and visited them as listed in this TR. As is the case with all bushwacks one needs to be properly dressed, for this County (where necessary) I wore boots, snake chaps, a hooded old nylon jacket, hat and gloves.
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VISIT #1 WAS A 2 DAY VISIT
DAY 1 DATED 2105-01-03, SUCCESSFUL VISIT TO 3 AREAS (11, 12 & 13) but not to Area 14 IN LELAND, NORTH OF HWY #74/76.
DAY 2 DATED 2015-01-04, SUCCESSFUL VISIT TO 2 AREAS (6 & 7), PLUS CHECKED OUT THE ACCESS FOR THE REMAINING 8 AREAS.
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DAY 1
From the intersection of Hwy #17/74 west of Wilmington, we traveled west on #74 for 3.5 miles to a right turn Mount Misery Road, 2.5 miles northwest turned left on Green Loop Road, 1.1 miles westerly took a left onto Timour Trail and followed it for .4 miles to its dead-end ..... blocked off and posted with a number of signs "No Trespassing", "Private Property","Smile your on Camera".
We went to the house left of the dead-end and found no one home, then went to the house 250 yards before the dead-end on the right, a number of horses in the pasture. The lady, Cindy, was very nice and understanding. She gave me permission to proceed, saying "The signs are there to keep out the unwanted". It's suggested to get permission. This was our TH for the 4 areas.

I should note that we first tried accessing Areas 11 & 12 from the north, using Butler road (off of Mount Misery Road). Butler takes you to a large/fenced-in Water Plant on Clearwell Drive, the satellite image shows a road continuing to these 2 areas, however we found it blocked-off at the Water Plant (actually the road is the entrance to the Water plant, heavily signed). Forget this access.

South of our TH at 40 yards is a Pipe Line right-of-way (runs northwest-southeast), about 200 yards further south there is a RRTrack and a Power Line right-of-way with a sandy road that parallels the Pipe Line (clearly shown on the satellite image).

AREA 12 .... successful, 1.8 miles one way from the TH.
From the TH I walked south to the Pipe Line right-of-way (it has a sandy road with numerous puddles) and turned right (northwest), at .3 miles I crossed a RRTrack that heads northeast, to the left the Track makes a long sweeping-left-bend and joins up with the RRTrack noted above.
I continued northwest for 1.4 miles to a fenced-in Water Facility (Water Tank, Pumps and a Communication Tower) on the right of the Pipe Line right-of-way.
The 75' contour is just south of this Facility. I walked the contour the best I could, nothing obvious,
The pine woods (planted in Rows) has some underbrush but not difficult, fairly moderate to move around but picking "the" spot is another matter. Good luck.

AREA 11 .... successful, .1 mile from #12
From area 12 I wacked southwest about 200 yards to the RR Tracks, the 75' contour somewhat obvious. There was little underbrush as I neared the Tracks. I crossed the RR Tracks and Power Line right-of-way looking for high ground on the south side, came back to the north side and chose my HP at 25 yards from the Tracks, GPS 34.29319,-78.10043.
I backtracked 1.6 miles to the RR Tracks on the Pipe Line right-of-way (at .3 miles from my TH).

AREA 13 .... successful, 1.7 miles from #11
At the RR Tracks I turned right (southwest) and immediately found/followed an old RR Track bending-right that used to meet up with the Tracks heading northwest (opposite to the present Bend and faintly shown on the satellite image). At about 250 yards I checked out the high ground. On the north side of the bend is a distinct ridge, probably man made from the RR track construction. I chose a spot on the ridge at GPS 34.28767,-78.08213.

ARE 14 ... unsuccessful, a huge impossible area, .6 miles from area #13
I continued westerly on the old RR bend for 100+ yards to the RR Tracks, turned right/followed the Tracks northwest 50 yards where I turned left (south), found an opening in the very dense brush and bushwacked 50 yards to the sandy road at Power Line right-of-way. I walked northwest 150 yards (I actually went north another 400 yards before coming back here) and turned left onto the sand track heading south, in 400 yds came to a JCT (GPS 34.28450,-78.08600). To the east are sparse woods with some dense underbrush to contend with.
I bushwacked/fought my way east/north 300-400 yds, before giving up. Again my described route is easily seen on the satellite image.
South of this area at about .5 miles is a large housing development in progress. Didn't go there, work in progress.
Another of those impossible/ridiculous conditions. No way to succeed here, perhaps once they've developed the whole area and got rid of the brush.
The backtrack to the TH is about 1.1 mile.

***NB: I expected the bushwack part of this trip to be much worse, there a few short nasty stretches but overall its a moderate wack except perhaps at #14.
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DAY 2
Heavy rains last night.

AREAS 9 & 8 .... unsuccessful
I looked for an east side access, no luck, needs further study. The new Hwy I-140 passes just east of these Areas, in fact it goes through the east-side of the Area 9 75 foot contour. An 8 foot fence is on both sides of the Hwy.

AREA 7 ... successful
From the intersection of #17/87 in Bishop, we went north on #87 (Maco Road) for 1.7 miles to a left onto the south entrance of Hunters Ridge Drive NE, .2 miles west is Cory Lane on the right.
By continuing straight on Hunters Ridge and making 2 immediate rights, you'll make a complete circle and come back to the same corner. The 75' contour is inside this circle, behind all of the houses.
From Cory Lane we drove west on Hunters Ridge for 125 yards to an old mailbox #7242, on the right is an open lot. We parked here.
I walked the inner circle (open woods, flat and nothing obvious) and chose a spot at 34.20266,-78.09431, north of the east-west drainage ditch. We returned to #87.

AREA 10 .... unsuccessful
From the south entrance of Hunters Ridge Drive we continued north on #87 for .9 miles to a sharp-right turn on Albright Road (3 mailboxes on the corner) and went to its dead-end at .75 miles with 2 houses (??cabins). The road which goes west then north was very wet (puddles) due to the recent rains.
From here its about a bushwack of 700 yards to the HP. Doesn't look good, some dense stuff ahead. Left it for another time.
I should note that both COHP.ORG TRs give one only Area for this County and that just east of #87/Albright corner. Most confusing as according to the topos there is no 75' contour at this corner. What is not confusing is the dense brush they talk about ... couldn't get much worse.

AREA 6 .... successful, 2.3 miles RT
From the junction of #17/Green Hill Road we went west on Green Hill for 3.7 miles to a left on Columbine Trail then south .2 miles to a fork .... right road is posted but the left (my route) is not. Parked here this was my TH, this whole area is open.
I should note that this route is nicely shown on the satellite image. Also the 75' contour is very narrow and long (north-south).
I walked the sandy road southeast .5 miles to a fork where I stayed left, at .15 miles came to the north end of the 75' contour at a 4-way junction, where I stayed straight (there is gate here) and continued .5 miles through the center of the contour to its south end at a sand road on the left. I turned around here and eventually picked a spot (not obvious) at 34.14761,-78.15709.
Beautiful open small pines, very easy going inside the woods.
The recommended way to this Area, once at the 75' contour, is to walk 20 yards to one side of the sand road and come back on the other side, you'll be sure to touch the HP.

AREAS 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5 .... unsuccessful
We first checked out a north access. From the intersection of #87/17 we went south on #17 for 4.5 miles to a right turn on Bell Swamp Road, 3.5 miles southwest arrived at an unsigned/gated sand road on the left, posted "Bull Pond Hunting Club" & "Private". Its about 2 miles south to the furthest HP Area.
We later checked out the east access. We went south to Hwy #17/Galloway Road then west on Galloway 1.2 miles to a left bend, at the bend is a sand road on the right generally going northwest to the HP areas. We followed it for 1 mile (could have gone further), number of puddles cause of the rains. From here its about 1 mile to the furthest HP Area.
We passed 5 homes, didn't see any posted signs. We thought this was the route for the HPs, until we came out at Galloway. An unsmiling couple in a car wanted to know what we were doing there. After telling them I was looking for HP access, he shortly said "Well you ain't gonna find it here."
If and when I return I may go for the north access.
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"PEOPLE WHO ARE LATE ARE OFTEN MORE HAPPIER THAT THOSE WHO HAVE TO WAIT FOR THEM." .... chinese proverb




Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:150 ft / 45 m
    Extra Gain:70 ft / 21 m
    Round-Trip Distance:7.2 mi / 11.6 km
    Route:2 day visit to 5 areas, see TR
    Trailhead:60 ft / 18 m
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Bushwhack



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