Ascent of Rattlesnake Knob on 2019-03-28
|Other People:||Solo Ascent|
|Date:||Thursday, March 28, 2019|
|Ascent Type:||Successful Summit Attained|
| Elevation:||4000 ft / 1219 m|
Ascent Trip ReportThis trip report is for the eastern side of High Cove Ridge (Rich Knob, Hightower Bald (Shooting Creek Bald which didn't meet the standard) and Rattlesnake Knob. I started from Blue Ridge Gap on the AT at 8:03am. This "trailhead" is very hard to reach in a vehicle. I used a 4x4 truck with high ground clearance. Be careful. I made good time on the AT and bypassed the obvious southeast ridge that comes down from Rich and instead hiked round to the backside of Rich and left the trail (2.96 miles) going west to reach a low gap just 200 yds off the AT, from there it was an easy hike south to the summit of Rich Knob (very little vegetation) at 3.35 miles 9:25 am and total ascent 1,419 feet. Then I hiked west then southwest to Hightower Bald at 4.9 miles, 10:26 and TA of 2,259. I found a witness tree on the summit of Hightower that I haven't read about in previous trip reports. It is a small metal tag, maybe three inches wide and 1 inch high, fixed to the tree about 8 feet high. From Hightower I hiked southwest to Shooting Creek (5.7 miles, 11:05 TA 2,459 feet). For the life of me I can't understand why this summit isn't on the list because it sure seems like I hiked enough elevation from the nearest gap to qualify. The east side of Shooting Creek is thickly with vegetation (canes), slow going near the summit (it will only get worse as the forest leafs out). From Shooting Creek I continued west and then southwest to Rattlesnake Knob (7.13 miles, 12:20 and TA 2841). I found the way through the rhododendron (mentioned by Debbie Adams) on the north side and the way around the boulders on the south side. It took me a little over 4 hours to reach Rattlesnake from Blue Ridge Gap and a little over 6 hours to hike back to BRG. I was well and truly exhausted! Also, on the hike down from Rich Knob I took the southeast ridge. I do not recommend this route, very steep and lots of vegetation (Rhody). The backside approach is SO much easier.
|Summary Total Data|
|Ascent Part of Trip: Rich Knob, Hightower Bald, Shooting Creek and Rattlesnake|
Complete Trip Sequence:
|GPS Data for Ascent/Trip|
GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks: climbed and unclimbed by Mike Trimble
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