Ascent of Hoy Mountain on 2007-08-14

Climber: Edward Earl

Date:Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Hoy Mountain
    Elevation:8831 ft / 2691 m

Ascent Trip Report

In Vernal, on US-191 (which is locally called Vernal Avenue) less than a mile N of US-40, I turned E on 500N and noted my odometer. The road later becomes Jones Hole Road. At 2.9 miles, the road makes a slight left turn. At 17.5 miles, the road makes a sharp left turn at the base of a hill. At 25.2 miles, turn left onto a good gravel road where a BLM sign says 15 miles to Browns Park. At 27.4 miles, reach a junction at a saddle; turn right. At 33.4 miles, turn right onto a primitive road that heads up Allen Draw. Up to this point the road is fine for any street legal vehicle, but high clearance may be necessary thereafter. I passed through an open gate immediately after this turn, but I can't be sure of the state of the gate at other times. At 35.0 miles, I reached a locked gate on the boundary between sections 16 and 15, at Point 7108. A sign next to the gate said "Allen Draw Ranch, Cecil & Diane Boren, cow outfit". There were no buildings in sight and no sign of any owners nearby, so I decided to park here and continue on foot.

I hiked south along the fenceline. After ½ mile, the fence turned 90° to the right, so I had little choice but to hop the fence and continue SE through section 22. I soon picked up a trail, which sometimes appeared to be maintained and sometimes not, that headed up the gully to the saddle between point 8362 and point 8716. At about 7700 feet, the trail passes through a meadow to the left side of the gully. Though faint here, it is worth finding because it will probably save some scrambling over large boulders and logs.

The trail reaches the saddle and fades, then another trail continues directly toward point 8716, then veers S of it, and finally fades. At about 8300 feet, a band of boulder and slab outcrops is encountered; this is best bypassed by going briefly downhill and around the lower end. Intermittent trails scattered around are of slight use in dealing with occasionally heavy brush. Saddle 8532 and the area west of it is characterized by a maze of rock slabs with 4 to 10 foot deep gaps between them; because this area is difficult to navigate, it is best to stay S of the saddle and about 50 to 100 feet below it. Once past the maze of slabs, work your way uphill toward the summit. Occasional brush east of the saddle can usually be avoided, then the gradually diminishing gradient culminates at the mostly open summit. Several slabs and rocks are candidates for the highest natural ground; I built a cairn on the one I considered most likely to be the highest.

If someone contacts the Borens and they turn out to be good folks and allow access, my 1700' net gain climb can be cut to about 1250', by starting at the cluster of buildings in section 23 near the midpoint of the N side, only about 1 mile NW of the summit.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:1723 ft / 525 m
    Round-Trip Distance:6 mi / 9.7 km
    Trailhead:Allen Draw  7108 ft / 2166 m
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Bushwhack
Ascent Statistics
    Time:3 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Time:2 Hours 30 Minutes

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