Ascent of Mount Ellen on 2013-07-19

Climber: Rob Woodall

Other People:Solo Ascent
Date:Friday, July 19, 2013
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Mount Ellen
    Elevation:11522 ft / 3511 m

Ascent Trip Report

Climbed the day after Mount Peale.

In from east (Hanksville direction) with standard 2WD car (Ford Focus), possible with care and patience to get to Bull Creek Pass trailhead. Western approach however not feasible as of July 2013.

Turned off the 95 at N38.09718 W110.62160 onto byway, parked overnight, in the morning took a slow drive up in 1 hour 40 mins. Petter Bjorstad's directions still work well. Keep R at N38.04620 W110.64192 (a more important junction on way back as other turn is to highway 95 south). Sharp R at N38.07347 W110.76074, 2458m (three point turn). Road more difficult from here to the trailhead: rougher, some quite steep sections, fewer places to pass oncoming vehicles (which were few). L at Wickiup Pass N38.09498 W110.77858, 2769m).

Parking at Bull Creek Pass trailhead N38.08588 W110.80238, 3193m, trail register. Good trail onto ridge (ends at a cairn, N38.10223 W110.80598), L along ridge crossing a few minor summits (tall cairn at N38.10463 W110.80974, 3501m). Official summit at N38.10900 W110.81351, 3507m, cairn and trail register. As is often the case, register full, someone has donated a part copy of The Hobbit. Most recent are 3 very familiar names who were here 4 days ago: Richard Carey, Shelley Rodgers and Mark Adrian, from San Diego. A few days later we arrange to hike Flat Top together through a bit of matchmaking by Adam Helman.

The next summit north, Ellen Peak looks just about as high (possibly even within survey tolerance) so I walk out to it, nice zigzag path up a stony nose. Adds an hour to the hike and some extra value to the drive in.

Heading back I meet an Austrian couple, Helmut and Brigitte. They are county high pointing hence presumably US based, although recognise none of the CoHP-er names I mention.

Returning along the ridge I notice a trail bypassing the tall-cairned summit on its R, but it runs out on a stone field and offers little other than variety.

Back at the car I decide to try the through drive west, to exit near Capitol Reefs park. This is fun but doesn't work out, as there are several awkward creek crossings: one near Sandy Creek Farm (Sandy Creek itself?) too deep and muddy to attempt. all the way back to Hanksville then, good thing I had plenty of gasoline for the double traverse. Car none the worse for its trip, nothing a car wash couldn't put right.

Next day I climb Deseret Peak, a bit out of sequence so I can join the San Diego trio on Flat Top the day after.

Note: Ellen is my 150th world ultra i.e. P1500m summit

Historical note c/o Charles Everett: record breaking 183 mile heliograph communication made from Mt Ellen in 1894:
Coincidentally I witness some signal mirror activity next day on Deseret Peak, although barely 50 miles thanks to the haze.
Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:1023 ft / 311 m
    Distance:4 mi / 6.4 km
    Trailhead:Bull Creek Pass  10499 ft / 3200 m
    Grade/Class:YDS 2
    Quality:6 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Unmaintained Trail, Open Country
    Weather:Pleasant, Breezy, Clear
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Rob Woodall
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
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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