Ascent of Salmon Mountain on 2010-07-22

Climber: Ben Lostracco

Date:Thursday, July 22, 2010
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Salmon Mountain
    Location:United States/Canada
    Elevation:3327 ft / 1014 m

Ascent Trip Report

Rough unmaintained trails and 3 moose.

I approached this USA/CA Boundary Line hike from the Canadian side at Chartierville, QC. hwy #257, at the very north end and across-the-border from Pittsburg NH, USA.
Today's hike was on the "Sentier Frontalier" and the TH that I used is at the very east-end of Chemin Brise Culotte, which starts at 3.2km south of Chartierville, QC. on hwy #257 or 1.8km north of the USA/CAN border xcrossing. From hwy #257 drive east on the rough gravel Chemin Brise Culotte for 4km to the TH parking, a gated private entrance in on the right, ensure not to block this entrance. The "Sentier Frontalier" red trail markings are clearly posted at the start of the trail.

The trail drops to the east on the rough continuation of Chemin Brise Culotte for a short distance before turning south into the woods on the way to the USA/CA Boundary Line, where it turns left and follows the Boundary Line swath eastbound off-and-on. Past Salmon Mountain, on the way to Boundary Mountain 477.7, the trail drops to the Brise Culotte Lean-to and then climbs again to the Boundary.
The trail first reaches the Boundary swath west of Salmon Mountain where it turns left, eastbound on the swath, and goes back into the Canadian woods just before a height-of-land at 50 yards ahead. Stay on the swath to the height-of-land and a Hunting Tower on the Canadian side, just in front is a rock in the middle of the swath, embedded with a "USA & CB Marker" ..... this is PB'S Salmon Mountain highpoint on the USA/CA Boundary Line.
Continue eastbound on the swath on a good track for about 150 yards to where the land drops off, enter the USA woods (right) with a compass reading of 140 degrees and immediately find a good herd path that leads/stays to the right of the Salmon mountain summit (at a very short distance). The summit is a small fern covered clearing, a white plastic canister can be found on a tree as you enter the clearing, marked "Salmon, elev 3390", I signed-in. I must say that the elevation on the Boundary Marker location appears to be somewhat higher.

From Salmon Mountain I headed for Boundary Mountain 477.7 but instead of staying/following the Sentier Frontalier I decided to follow the Boundary Line swath eastbound on a good track. In a short distance I came upon a huge moose grazing on the swath, she looked at me for what seemed to be forever .... all the while I'm thinking "what would I do if she attacked". She finally decided to go her way into the woods (I would get a quick view of 2 other moose near the TH on the way back).
It wouldn't be long before I found out that I made "a big mistake" in choosing the swath, the trail disappeared and in no time I was in deep grass/bushes, finally arriving at a very steep section with ledges. After making some Indiana Jones moves I decided to detour into the bushes in-order-to avoid the bad stuff, at the col before the summit I had to go around a boggy area, past Boundary Monument 478 and continued to fight my way east, finally picking up the Sentier Frontalier as it came back out into the swath. I made a bad mistake and put myself into danger by not staying on the trail. One never seems to learn.

I continued to follow the trail eastbound as it ascended the swath until the trail went back into the Canadian woods (left), straight ahead at about 150 yards up the swath I could see the height-of-land. I climbed to the top to find it to be the summit of Boundary Mountain 477.7 ....... a very obvious highpoint right in the middle of the swath, across a fairly new Hunter's Shooting Hut on the Canadian side. I forgot my GPS .... note that PB shows the location of this peak as USA-NH, I believe it should be USA-Canada.

I returned/stayed on the Sentier Frontalier on my way back to the TH. The trail, even though excellently marked, is a very virgin-unmaintained-rough-badly overgrown-dangerous trail. At places you can't see where you are planting you step, the footing is rocky, mossy and rooty. I slipped and fell numerous of times, one time head first. I was lucky not to have gotten hurt.
I suggest to those reading this report to allow extra time, to go slow and do stay on the trail. I underestimated today's trip, it was a much longer day .... 17km and 9 hours.

I must note that once again I past numerous Hunters Shooting Towers with salt lick traps on the Canadian side and interestingly only 2 towers on the USA side for the first time (so far).


Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:1277 ft / 389 m
    Total Elevation Loss:50 ft / 15 m
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Bushwhack
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:1277 ft / 389 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 1227 ft / 374 m; Extra: 50 ft / 15m
    Loss on way in:50 ft / 15 m
    Distance:2.5 mi / 4 km
    Route:sentier frontalier eb from ch brise culotte
    Start Trailhead:E end of ch brise culotte, chartierville  2100 ft / 640 m
Descent Statistics
    Route:sentier frontalier eb to Boundary 477.7
Ascent Part of Trip: salmon

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Salmon Mountain2010-07-22 a1277 ft / 389 m
2Boundary Mountain 477.72010-07-22 b1077 ft / 328 m
3Salmon Mountain2010-07-22 c1217 ft / 371 m
Total Trip Gain: 3571 ft / 1088 m    Total Trip Loss: 140 ft / 42 m

This page has been served 830 times since 2005-01-15.

Copyright © 1987-2020 by All Rights Reserved. Questions/Comments/Corrections? See the Contact Page Terms of Service