Ascent of Pawnee County High Point on 2012-08-19

Climber: Richard Oestreicher

Date:Sunday, August 19, 2012
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Pawnee County High Point
    Elevation:1130 ft / 344 m

Ascent Trip Report

Pawnee County has four high point candidates, but they are located close together just off the 412 expressway. I did all four in under an hour from the expressway exit with less than a mile of walking and less than 100 feet elevation gain for all four combined. For a four high point candidate county it is thus quite easy. I do note some minor changes and additions to previous reports.

From the expressway exit I headed south and turned left at the first county road. Slightly more than a mile up the road two of the points are on either side of the road. To the north the top of a slight mound is about 200 yards in from an unlocked gate. The main hazard here is dodging the vast collection of cow pies some of which are cleverly hidden in tall grass. The next point is across the road and slightly southeast. An imposing new house sits atop this contour. No one was home. The hp coordinates place the hp in a fenced field slightly nw of the house, but that is clearly not the highest spot. I think that is just a few feet off the east edge of the highest point of the driveway to the house. It's one of those situations where if you go up to the front door to ask permission to explore the property you've probably already crossed the hp before you get to the front door. The two hills for these two points are visible from each other. Sighting from each looks like a dead heat to me, and my GPS readings were virtually identical.

For the third point turn at the next left and park just before the expressway overpass. A closed gate makes an easy climb so you don't have to mess with the barbed wire. The hp is next to the fence overlooking the expressway and opposite a microwave tower on the other side. The first two points are visible from this spot and quite clearly higher, so, in my opinion, this one can be eliminated from the list of hp candidates. There is higher ground than this spot on the grade up to the expressway overpass but that's clearly artificial.

Finally, for the last (and probable actual hp in my opinion) head north crossing Lone Chimney Road to the house on the left just past some woods. No one was home, so I risked entry without permission. (it's only a 5 minute rt.) The hp is in a field about 200 yards behind the house. The benchmark is right next to a large rock more than a yard in diameter and about two feet high. Indeed, from a distance I thought it was a cairn erected by previous high pointers. While I concur that GPS readings are sometimes unreliable my reading atop the rock was about 7-8 feet higher than any of the the other three points. So benchmark, big rock, and higher GPS reading lead me to speculate that this is the high point of Pawnee County, although this is admittedly not conclusive enough to eliminate the first two points from consideration.

Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:75 ft / 22 m
    Distance:0.8 mi / 1.3 km
    Route Conditions:
Open Country
Ascent Statistics
    Elevation Gain:75 ft / 22 m
    Extra Loss:65 ft / 19 m
    Distance:0.4 mi / 0.6 km
    Trailhead:1120 ft / 341 m
Descent Statistics
    Distance:0.4 mi / 0.6 km

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