Ascent of Jefferson County High Point on 2012-04-18

Climber: Ben Lostracco

Date:Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Jefferson County High Point
    Location:USA-New York
    Elevation:1740 ft / 530 m

Ascent Trip Report

An easy woods road/bushwack ..... 6.4 miles. 3h20 hours RT.

I had to make 2 visits to this HP.
I used Michael Schwartz's TR and his eastern approach from Culpepper Road, my plan was to bushwack more or less on his route, at the same time trying to find a easier way, which I believe I did on my second visit. I did not succeed on my first attempt (2011-12-08) as the water level at the East Stream was much too high for me to cross without getting soakers.
All the distances I quote in this TR are guess-estimates.

The driving directions are the same as that for the Oswego CoHP. From I81, exit 42, south of Watertown, we drove east on Hwy 177 for 15.4 miles to a right turn on Liberty Road, immediately after the Deer River bridge. Drive 2.3 miles to the Liberty Corners intersection where Liberty Road turns right. Turn right and stay on Liberty Road (it becomes Salmon Run Road) for 4 miles to a right turn on Culpepper Road (if you are going to the Oswego CoHP you will stay straight). Drive Culpepper road northwest .6 miles to a left on the signed Plum Tree Road. This corner was my TH ...... I tried driving down Plum Tree Road, turning around at 100 yards as I deemed it too rough for my van, however I found out that the road can be driven with care.

I walked west on Plum Tree Road for 1.1 miles to the "Chatham Hunt Club Inc." camp site on the left side (GPS 43.72014, -75.75665). Plum Tree Road turns right here and continues generally west/southwest (always stay on the more used road) .5 miles ending at Michael's East Stream, I walked right along the stream 40 yards to where I could see the road continuing on the other side of the stream (my GPS read 43.71860,-75.76562, 1.6 miles from the TH).
The depth of the 4-5 yard wide stream on my first visit was above my boots, I looked-for/couldn't-find a place to rock-hop-on so I decided to leave it for another day (didn't want a soaker on a 20 degree day). I came back on this second visit equipped with a pair of High Galoshes for this crossing. I didn't need them however as I was able to rock-hop across, evidence of the little snow of winter.

I crossed the Stream and walked southwest 150 yards to a crossing with the north-south ATV track. Michael went straight here, I turned left and walked southbound on the ATV track for .3 miles to a track on the right (GPS 43.71465,-75.76680). I turned right on the track and followed it southwest .4 miles to a low area and a stream crossing (GPS 43.71235,-75.77239). To the right (north) is the long/narrow swampy lake area.
I continued on the track, now heading right of west, for .2 miles to a second fork where I stayed right and went north another .1 mile to where the track bends to the left (west). This was the start of my bushwack ....... the summit ridge line (at 350 degree compass) is to the left (west), the swampy lake is to the right (east) and the HP is north at .5 miles.
I bushwacked/followed the ridge line (staying below/east of the ridge) for .5 miles to the summit. Half way into the bushwack I dropped/crossed a very low/swampy area and when I ascended the other side I picked up an old woods track coming-in from the left (over the ridge). I followed the track 300 yards to a-height-of-land, the obvious wooded summit area is 40 yards to the left.
The whole bushwack is in open deciduous woods, easy going.

I stomped/eye-leveled the summit area and chose my spot at GPS 43.71843,-75.77913. The distance from the TH is an estimated 3.2 miles. I returned the same way.

"NINETY PERCENT OF CLIMBING IS HALF MENTAL." ...... a variation on Berraism.

Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:40 ft / 12 m
    Elevation Loss:40 ft / 12 m
    Distance:6.4 mi / 10.3 km
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail, Bushwhack
Ascent Statistics
    Elevation Gain:40 ft / 12 m
    Distance:3.2 mi / 5.2 km
    Route:wb plum tree rd/trail/bushwack
    Trailhead:culpepper/plum tree roads  1700 ft / 518 m
    Time Up:1 Hours 40 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Elevation Loss:40 ft / 12 m
    Distance:3.2 mi / 5.2 km
    Route:bushwack/track/eb on plum tree road
    Trailhead:culpepper/plum tree roads  1700 ft / 518 m
    Time Down:1 Hours 20 Minutes

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