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Ascent of Pinnacle Mountain on 2015-08-08

Climber: Brian McCray

Date:Saturday, August 8, 2015
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Pinnacle Mountain
    Location:USA-South Carolina
    Elevation:3425 ft / 1043 m

Ascent Trip Report

Multi-day, multi-summit trip including Table Rock, Pinnacle Mountain, Hickorynut Mountain and Sassafras Mountain.

We camped very close to the base of Pinnacle Mountain, after a Table Rock summit the previous day, and we made an early summit attempt the following morning. Be warned that if you do this, there were no obvious water sources between the stream near the trailhead and the summit, so ensure you have sufficient water prior to making a summit attempt on a hot day.

The bulk of the trail to the Pinnacle Mountain Trail fork is similar to the Table Rock Trail (and much of the Foothills Trail)--moderately strenuous with some steep spots but a lot of rolling up and down. The last 0.4 miles of the summit trail is extremely strenuous, however. While it's something that can be done by anyone in reasonable shape, some may require frequent rests. There are sections that seem to go up at an insane pitch with no relief in sight. Much of this is an illusion given the narrowness of the trail and the visual effects of the tunnel of surrounding trees, but for someone unprepared, it can seem daunting.

The summit is clearly marked with a wood sign identical to Table Rock. There's technically not a campground on the top, but there's a nice flat area that you can lay down and rest if you so desire. There's really nothing to see at the summit since like Table Rock, the true summit is heavily wooded. Still, are sections where you can see a good view through the trees. There is a trail that runs directly from the base of the Table Rock Trail to the summit of Pinnacle Mountain (the Ridge Trail), but we opted to use the longer route of heading back to very nearly the beginning of the Foothills trailhead. We did this because of extensive downed trees on the Ridge Trail. For this reason, I'm not sure of the typical conditions and trail quality of the Ridge Trail--the more typical route if you're going directly from Table Rock to Pinnacle Mountain.

The descent was pretty straightforward using the Foothills Trail toward Hickorynut Mountain.
Summary Total Data
    Quality:4 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles, Tent Camp
    Weather:Hot, Calm, Clear
Very hot and humid
Ascent Statistics
    Route:Table Rock Trail to Pinnacle Trail via Foothills T
    Start Trailhead:Table Rock  
Descent Statistics
    End Trailhead:Hickorynut Mountain  
Ascent Part of Trip: Sassafras Mountain (2 nights total away from roads)

Complete Trip Sequence:
OrderPeak/PointDateGain
1Table Rock2015-08-07 
2Pinnacle Mountain2015-08-08 
3Hickorynut Mountain2015-08-08 
4Sassafras Mountain2015-08-08 
5Hickorynut Mountain2015-08-09 



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