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Ascent of McKinley Mountain on 1987-04-11

Climber: Frederick Johnson

Others in Party:John Backus
Dick& Shirley Akawie and others
Date:Saturday, April 11, 1987
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:McKinley Mountain
    Location:USA-California
    Elevation:6200 ft / 1889 m

Ascent Trip Report

HPS trip to Big Three-Santa Barbara County: McKinley Mountain, San Rafael Mountain, Santa Cruz Peak


April 11. Our group of 15 rendezvoused at Cachuma Saddle at 7:00A , shouldered our packs, and, led by veteran John Backus, started hiking up the fire road (FSR 28W01-closed to motorized traffic)for 7.5 miles to McKinley Spring. Our morning's hike took us up around Cachuma Mountain, past Hell's Half Acre, through a forested area, a short dip above the headwaters of Manzanita Creek, and a final pull to McKinley Spring (5,600'),which we reached shortly before noon. We made camp here and had lunch before starting again at 1:30P for the McKinley-San Rafael Saddle (5,800'), only 1/2 mile distant. From the saddle it was only another 1/2 mile over a firebreak to the top of McKinley Mountain.

We soon returned to the McKinley-San Rafael Saddle, then hiked about 2.5 miles over a reasonably good unmaintained trail to San Rafael Mountain. By now the morning's fair weather had deteriorated with increasing wind and heavy clouds, but no rain. We were back in camp at McKinley Spring by 5:15P. Around 6:00P "Bobcat" Thompson and another dirt biker passed by McKinley Spring after having biked today to the McKinley-San Rafael Saddle and then climbed the Big Three. Soon after, a lone hiker, Bob Emmerich (sp?), who had passed our group at Hell's Half Acre this morning, passed by on his return to Cachuma Saddle after a day hike of the Big Three. And at 7:00P Bob Michael arrived from Cachuma Saddle to join us for tomorrow's hike to Santa Cruz Peak.

Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3100 ft / 944 m
    Total Elevation Loss:600 ft / 182 m
    Round-Trip Distance:9.5 mi / 15.3 km
    Grade/Class:Class 1
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail
    Gear Used:
Tent Camp
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:3100 ft / 944 m
    Distance:8.5 mi / 13.7 km
    Route:FSR W01, trail from McKinley-San Rafael saddle
    Start Trailhead:Cachuma Saddle  3100 ft / 944 m
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:600 ft / 182 m
    Distance:1 mi / 1.6 km
    Route:Trail to McKinley-San Rafael saddle, FSR 28W01
    End Trailhead:McKinley Springs  5600 ft / 1706 m
Ascent Part of Trip: Big Three-Santa Barbara County (1 nights total away from roads)

Complete Trip Sequence:
OrderPeak/PointDateGain
1McKinley Mountain1987-04-11 a3100 ft / 945 m
2San Rafael Mountain1987-04-11 b3493 ft / 1065 m
3Santa Cruz Peak1987-04-12 c0 ft / 0 m
Total Trip Gain: 6593 ft / 2010 m    Total Trip Loss: 4093 ft / 1248 m



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