Ascent of Point 3560 on 2016-11-07

Climber: Tom Layton

Date:Monday, November 7, 2016
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Point 3560
    Location:USA-North Carolina
    Elevation:3565 ft / 1086 m

Ascent Trip Report

The only reason to climb this unnamed hill is if you are trying to do every ranked peak in Watauga County. It's an open summit not far from four-lane US421, but the routes up are overgrown and the view is marred by a power line.

The most direct route is from the west end of a 100-foot deep cut on US421. But that way looked steep and overgrown, so I opted for a longer but better-looking route starting southeast of the Maymead quarry. I parked at an open farm gate on the northbound side of 421 (el. 3240) and followed the ridgeline north and then west around the perimeter of the quarry. After an easy third of a mile, I hit a briar-patch backed by a barbed-wire fence, and I ruined my trousers getting through. Once in the woods, I could see the pasture up top, so I charged up the ridgeline, ignoring an old woods road that follows the 3440 contour south of the summit. I emerged in an overgrown pasture infested with more briars and had to wade through them for about 100 yards to the high ground. On the return, I went directly south to escape the summit clearing and descended via the woods road to return to my car.

Recent excavation at the quarry probably has closed my route. Alternatives you may want to consider: (1) climb up the west end of the road cut, which is a steep but shorter route; or (2) follow the power line right-of-way from Pine Run Road, which involves crossing at least two fences.

I named this Point 3560 because that's the top contour on the USGS quad. However, the elevation reaches 3565 according to the Watauga County GIS map, which has 5-foot contours. It does have 320 feet of prominence, so it is one of the 46 ranked peaks in Watauga County. On ListsofJohn, it is named 3580.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:325 ft / 99 m
    Round-Trip Distance:1.2 mi / 1.9 km
    Trailhead:3240 ft / 987 m
    Quality:3 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)

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