Ascent of Van Patten Butte on 2020-09-20

Climber: George Burgess

Date:Sunday, September 20, 2020
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Van Patten Butte
    Elevation:8729 ft / 2660 m

Ascent Trip Report

This was a great way to end a long weekend in the Elkhorns. My knee bothered me a little bit, but other than that I had no complaints. I followed the old road-bed as it turned into a trail, then followed a network of unmaintained trails along the shore of Van Patten Lake. At the head of the lake, there was a brief section of bushwhacking before the basin above opened up. I could see an abundance of good lines ... I picked what I deemed the best one and quickly gained the ridge via a very steep but narrow gully that felt secure. From there, the walking to the summit was trivial, through open rocky slopes. On the way down, I did dislodge a pretty hefty (microwave-size) boulder from the gully that hurtled several hundred feet downslope and did some pretty serious damage to a mid-size tree. This reflects my general experience with the Elkhorns, which is that the rock is often not well-consolidated, and moves around more than you often find in places like the Wallowas.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:2260 ft / 688 m
    Round-Trip Distance:6 mi / 9.7 km
    Route:Van Patten Lake Trail
    Trailhead:Van Patten TH  6469 ft / 1971 m
    Quality:9 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Bushwhack, Scramble
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Partly Cloudy
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by George Burgess
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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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