Ascent of Black Hill on 2011-12-25

Climber: BMS 914

Other People:Solo Ascent
Only Party on Mountain
Date:Sunday, December 25, 2011
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Hi-Clearance Vehicle
Peak:Black Hill
    Elevation:4092 ft / 1247 m

Ascent Trip Report

Took my truck to the very end of Horizon Ridge Pkwy, then took graded dirt road past the small power substation and alongside the pipeline until a dip too deep for my 2WD truck to get back up appeared. Parked and walked down the jeep road to a secondary road heading East. Black Hill is the central high point of the Railroad Peaks (but not the high point of the whole ridge). Trudged up some steep scree to a gully, then up the gully negotiating some easy 3rd Class dry waterfalls in the process. This gully was to the left (North) of the big gully that ends in a big notch in the ridge line. The big gully was filled with loose rock and threatened by rockfall near the top. Once the gully began to merge with the other, I began climbing wherever it seemed most reasonable, with several exposed and difficult spots sometimes turning me back in a new direction. I eventually reached the top of the ridge, traversed a little too far onto the exposed and slightly inverted West face just below the summit. One difficult move and I was over the spooky stuff.

On descent, I stayed more on the ridge saddle which was less exposed and exciting, but more tricky to deal with in some ways. Worked my way down a bit the way I came up, and hit the big scree-filled gully a while later and went scree-skiing a good ways down the mountain, coming off just South of where I started.

Had an easy hike back to the truck with my mind on Christmas dinner and a nasty splinter caught in my thumb. Fellas in the sand rails even slowed down when the saw me scurrying off the road - I appreciated their courtesy. A guy I met at work later told me to beware of animal traps in the wash, but I don't know if it is BS or not.
Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:1449 ft / 442 m
    Distance:6.5 mi / 10.5 km
    Route:West Face
    Trailhead:Jeep Road S of Power substation  2643 ft / 805 m
    Grade/Class:Class 3
    Quality:4 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Open Country, Scramble, Exposed Scramble
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Clear
Nice day
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by BMS 914
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Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

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