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Ascent of Paul Benchmark on 2017-12-07

Climber: Bob McLaughlin

Others in Party:Jim Doyle
Date:Thursday, December 7, 2017
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Paul Benchmark
    Location:USA-California
    Elevation:3854 ft / 1174 m

Ascent Trip Report

The Ben Lomond trail was in excellent condition. We came across just one pesky obstacle -- a downed tree -- which we were able to squeeze awkwardly underneath.

Lower down, the trail had a few wet spots from springs, while higher up it was partially frozen. Saw some very nice columnar ice crystals along the way.

The highpoint is a fantastic, marbled, gneissic boulder that has been sheared off to reveal a beautiful swirling pattern. A small CHA benchmark with the inscription "PAULS CR PT 3854'" is cemented into a crack. With the aid of a handy, burned-out tree stump, we took turns clambering up to the precipice, where we admired the sheer drop off to the north.

I attempted to bushwhack down to the 1972 CA Div of Highways benchmark described in the NGS data sheet but was thwarted after about 100 feet by an impenetrable wall of brush. After I returned, bloodied and humbled from my futile efforts, Jim produced a celebratory bottle of the finest bubbly, and we proceeded to toast our completion of the CHA list.

Cheeecoooo! (With apologies and gratitude to Dennis.)
Summary Total Data
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Bushwhack



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