Ascent of Mount Baldy on 2018-11-20
|Other People:||Solo Ascent|
|Date:||Tuesday, November 20, 2018|
|Ascent Type:||Successful Summit Attained|
| Motorized Transport to Trailhead:||4x4 Vehicle|
| Elevation:||9271 ft / 2825 m|
Ascent Trip ReportAfter skiing Northstar's one open ski run all morning, I decided an afternoon hike would be more fun. I wanted to stay close to Northstar and ended up driving up Martis Peak Road. The road is mostly paved but heavily potholed. The first few minutes of the road is steep and has an unavoidable pothole or two that would probably bottom out most sedans. My stock jeep made it fine, and I saw sedans on the road that drove further than me. At the end of the paved road, I parked and did Martis Peak. Afterward I came back down to my car and drove a couple minutes back down the road. I took a left towards the Tahoe Rim Trail. This intersection has a sign telling you this is not a through road. I only drove a minute or two past this intersection before deciding it better to just walk. Two sedans went about .3 miles further than me, but the road here is barely worth driving.
From the gate, at the end of Martis Peak Road, I continued up the road by foot. Follow the road up a few minutes until you see a use trail going up to your right. Follow it to the real Martis Peak, then keep going to the fire lookout past the peak. There is a mountain bike trail heading north from between the two that I assumed dropped back down to the TRT. I followed it a few minutes before realizing it likely did not go where I hoped (I later found a map showing that it would have worked for me, though). I went back to my car instead, and moved it a few minutes down the road to the TRT where I originally described my drive.
Mt. Baldy West Ridge:
Follow the TRT to the state line, then climb this 10 foot rock pile for amazing views of Tahoe. Its like 30 feet away from the trail anyways and has the first really good look at Tahoe along this section of the TRT.
Keep going on the Tahoe Rim Trail. There is a metal sign as you enter the Mt. Rose Wilderness saying no bikes. The trail splits here and to the left is Mt. Baldy. The trail continues over Mt. Baldy and appears to continue North, away from the TRT. I bushwhacked back South through dry mule ears to the trail and continued on. These mountains have a lot of mule ears and everywhere they grow is very sandy.
I followed the TRT to a meadow then went cross-country towards Rifle. If it weren't for the GPS I would have thought this peak was a gentle rolling hill. You have to keep going past this hill to the real summit along the cliff line before realizing this peak does have great views looking north.
I turned around and went back through the open country meadow but this time towards peak 9499. The summit block seems intimidating until you get real close and realize its class 1 (maybe 2). The views here were the best I saw all day. This was an amazing peak.
From Peak 9499 I decided to stay on the ridgeline through open country instead of dropping 200+ feet down to the trail. This was the less steep option and I never found a use trail at the top of Rose Knob anyways. Rose Knob doesn't have the best views because the summit has too many trees. There is a benchmark near the summit. I hiked this mountain as a peakbagger, but I'd recommend others pass it by for better nearby alternatives (like Peak 9499).
Rose Knob was my last peak of the day. I returned cross-country down towards Peak 9499 similar to my way up, but traversed down to the Tahoe Rim Trail. It was beautiful walking towards the sunset. I made it to the car about half hour after dark.
|Summary Total Data|
| Total Elevation Gain:||231 ft / 70 m|
| Route Conditions:||Maintained Trail|
| Gain on way in:||231 ft / 70 m|
| Start Trailhead:||9040 ft / 2755 m|
|Ascent Part of Trip: Martis to Rose Knob|
Complete Trip Sequence:
Total Trip Gain: 2001 ft / 609 m Total Trip Loss: 280 ft / 85 m
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