Ascent of Cartago Peak on 1998-10-19
|Date:||Monday, October 19, 1998|
|Ascent Type:||Successful Summit Attained|
| Elevation:||10480 ft / 3194 m|
Ascent Trip ReportThis is a Spanish name for the ancient city of Carthage in North Africa. The name was applied to the railroad station when the Mojave-Owenyo branch of the Southern Pacific reached the area in 1909. The name was given to the post office in 1919. (Gudde, p. 56) The peak is not named on the topo map and is unoffical. A benchmark is at the summit which is not indicated on the map.
Cartago is often reached from the PCT, but can be dayhiked from the aqueduct on the east side. To reach the trailhead turn off route 395 opposite the last house at the north end of Cartago. The house is a wood, barn-like structure on the east side of the highway. The dirt road is not signed. Driving NW on this good dirt road stay right at the first junction after 0.2 mile and in 0.4 miles turn left and cross the aqueduct on a bridge. On the west side of the bridge turn left and drive south for 0.6 miles to a junction on your right. This is the steep spur road that goes about 1/4 mile up to the posts at the wilderness boundary. UTM at this point is: 406700E, 4020160N (NAD27). There is not much room there and the slope is not great for camping. One can park along the aqueduct road which will add 1/4 mile and 200 ft. gain to the hike. Start up the use trail which fades out after a short distance then go left toward the ridge. There are two rock bands on the way to the upper slopes which require class 3 scrambling. Head for the saddle just west of point 9921 ft. shown on the map. From there head SW up the slopes. The summit is the last and highest rock outcropping on the SE side of a flat sandy area. The canyon east of point 9921 ft. makes a good descent route. The hike is 8 miles round-trip with a gain of 6500 ft. Allow 6 to 7 hours for the ascent and 3 to 4 hours for the descent depending on your route. 10/98 RLC
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