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Ascent of Antelope Hills on 2018-10-20

Climber: Dennis Stewart

Other People:Solo Ascent
Only Party on Mountain
Date:Saturday, October 20, 2018
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Antelope Hills
    Location:USA-Oklahoma
    Elevation:2604 ft / 793 m

Ascent Trip Report

On March 18, 2018, I climbed Antelope Hills (south) with my wife, Geri, but I did not climb the northern candidate for the highest point in Roger Mills County. I returned today to correct that shortcoming, since I was feeling guilty for not bagging all the candidates in this county and, as far as I can determine, Antelope Hills is the 9th highest named highpoint in Oklahoma and I wanted to make sure I really climbed the 9th highest point. However, it does seem on the topo map that the highpoint to the south with the benchmark of 2604 feet is the highest point that actually has the name Antelope Hills. The northern point does not seem to be included in that nomenclature. At any rate, I returned this time to correct missing the northern county highpoint of Roger Mills County the first time I was here. I parked my car SE of Antelope Hills (north) where I was only .1 mile from the summit. This turned out probably to be the longest 176 yards of my life, since it took me 18 minutes to reach the summit. The problem was near the highpoint's rim where there was a 10 foot section of steep loose rock. From a distance I was a little intimidated when looking at this part of the climb, but I figured I could find an easy Class 3 chute to the top. As it turned out, I found myself struggling in the middle of a short Class 4 area with many large jugs that broke off the cliff when I put pressure on them. I should have turned around because a fall here would have been serious, but I was so close to the top and I did not want to start an early treacherous descent without summit success. The summit was quite flat and seemed like a very small mesa with a fire pit on top. Of course, there were good views in all directions and except for the last 10 feet it was a fun climb. Not wanting to endure the dangers of my ascent route I searched for a different descent option. I followed a trail across the flat summit to the NW side of the small mesa and gratefully found a steep but less intimidating chute. From above it looked like I was going to have to endure a dense bushwhack as I got lower, but that was far more desirable than my ascent route. To my surprise, however, I found there was a very narrow trail through the vegetation and this delivered me to a road that circumnavigated the highpoint back to my car. It took me 17 minutes to reach my car after covering .36 miles. I strongly recommend using this route for your ascent, not only for safety, but to lessen the damage to the summit rim. I am a bit ashamed of myself for dislodging has much rock as I did during my ascent, but I was ignorant of the route conditions until I was in the middle of it and quite committed.
Summary Total Data
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Open Country, Bushwhack, Scramble, Exposed Scramble



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