Ascent of Chowan County High Point on 2016-03-01

Climber: Tom Layton

Date:Tuesday, March 1, 2016
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Chowan County High Point
    Location:USA-North Carolina
    Elevation:52 ft / 15 m

Ascent Trip Report

Do Chowan and its fraternal twin Perquimans on the same trip. You'll need to knock on doors for permission in Perquimans, so you need to know what I didn't--it's pronounced puh-KWIM-uns, not PERKY-mans.

Both counties have GIS maps with 2-foot contours so we were able to reduce the possibilities to four easy spots in Perquimans and two in Chowan. These are all along County Line Road north of NC37.

In Perquimans, the LiDAR-derived county maps show 52-foot contours on COHP Areas 1, 3, 5, and 6. We also visited Area 4 (50 feet) but ruled out Area 2 (48 feet). In Chowan, Area 2 has a 54-foot contour and Area 1 has a 52-footer. None of the others are above 50 feet, which rules out several spots south of NC37 in the Snow Hill community.

Starting at NC37, head north on County Line Road. North of the intersection with Belvidere Road, your first stop is a farm field on the right, across the road from a ranch house. This is Perquimans Area 6 (52-foot contour). Aerial photos show it as a strawberry field but it was bare when we visited. The HP is along a farm road near an irrigation tank. If I recall correctly, there is a power line along this farm road. (Across the road and south of the ranch house is a Chowan area identified by Fred Lobdell, but since it is only 50 feet on the Chowan GIS map, we ruled it out as two contours lower than the 54-foot contour on Chowan Area 2.)

Continue north on County Line Road to Whitehouse Road, turn right, and stop at 205 Whitehouse Road to ask owner Eleanor Stallings for permission to visit the field she owns across the road. There is a noticeable ridge toward the back of the field, and she gave us permission to drive there on the grassy farm road. This is Perquimans Area 5. N36.33724 W76.55525 (NAD27).

Return to County Line Road, turn right (north) and stop at the first house on the left (west). This is Chowan Area 2. We talked with the owner, who told us he had once run a survey line across his field to determine the highest ground. It is along the road that bisects his field at N36.33764 W76.56249 (NAD27). This is the only 54-foot contour on the Chowan GIS map and is the most likely COHP.

Continue north on County Line Road to the next house on the left (west), which is 2019 County Line Road. No one was home when we visited, and no ridge was evident. The county GIS survey shows the 52-foot contour northwest of the house. As far as I'm concerned, you are now done with Chowan.

The other two 52-foot contours in Perquimans are on a crescent-shaped ridge in the Joppa community that is shown as a 16-meter contour on the quad. Continue northbound on County Line Road, park at the Gates County line (unsigned), and step into the field east of the road. Continue to Joppa and turn right (east) onto Hinton Road, which is labeled as Joppa Road on some maps. Area 3 is south of the road on the same crescent-shaped ridge. Area 2 is further east on the north side of the road but it measured only 48 feet on the county GIS map.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:10 ft / 3 m
    Round-Trip Distance:0.2 mi / 0.3 km
    Trailhead:42 ft / 12 m

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