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Ascent of Villager Peak in 2010-04

Climber: Marit Chrislock-Lauterbach

Others in Party:Nathaniel
Date:April, 2010
Ascent Type:Unsuccessful - Turned Back
Peak:Villager Peak
    Location:USA-California
    Elevation:5000 ft / 1524 m

Ascent Trip Report

Parked at TH off the s-22 and were hiking by 6:45 am. First group on the trail - about a mile to the base of climb. Then - WOW - no marked trail, only a rough ducked/carin route up the finger. Steady grind of 1000 feet per mile after initial 700 foot gain. Lots of cacti and agave plants - so be ware. Very crude trail and path from hikers before.... Only one way to go: up. Follow ridegeline. At 4000, it narrows significantly and beautiful exposed vistas on a narrow saddle. Breaks every so often - but we were feeling good. Slate rock mostly - so durable boots are a MUST, especially with all of the spikey plans. Also - long pants are highly recommended due to the cacti. 4800 feet we passed what could be used for a campsight and made our first big mistake. Followed route to the left of the finger and ended up overlooking a 4000+ foot drop to the valley below. Regrouped and headed back down to the 4800 foot area and had lunch. Another party came by and took a route to the right of the finger. We had decided that we were done and after 4 or so hours of climbing, we turned around and headed back. 2:45 to return to the car - some sections were SUPER fast, while others the going was just as slow. We will return and bag the peak some day! GREAT learning experience. If I could do it differently - I would have been more patient AND maybe would have gone with someone who had done it before. Even though the way up was "clear" according to the map - the route was technically challenging because of exposure. But now that I know which way to go AND have the expectation of slow going (and taking a full 5 or 6 hours to summit), I would happily do this hike again.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:4500 ft / 1371 m
    Round-Trip Distance:10.5 mi / 16.9 km
    Trailhead:500 ft / 152 m
    Grade/Class:class 2
    Quality:8 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Unmaintained Trail, Open Country, Scramble, Exposed Scramble
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
Ascent Statistics
    Time:4 Hours 
Descent Statistics
    Time:2 Hours 45 Minutes



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