Ascent of Washington County High Point on 2001-05-22
|Date:||Tuesday, May 22, 2001|
|Ascent Type:||Successful Summit Attained|
|Peak:||Washington County High Point|
| Elevation:||1572 ft / 479 m|
Ascent Trip ReportI exited I-70 at state route PA-221. The highpoint is a single hill near the community of Gale.
Once off the main highways, I discovered that the local routes in the state are a warren of roads, narrow two-lane roads that are rarely signed. My DeLorme atlas denoted each's "number", but they are never signed as such in the field. Most go by local names, or no names. I presume the locals just "know" the roads that signing them is not worth the trouble. Thus, I found myself confused and lost at times, such as now. After some wandering, I found PA-3035, drove it west to PS-3022, into a rural community of random homes, barns, churches and grassy fields and hills. This was Gale, but again, no sign mentioned this.
Where these two roads intersect, there is a local road called Mt. Zion Road that is just east of a house. I followed Mt. Zion Road up a small hill about a half-mile, then where the road crests, I pulled off into a clearing at an open gate. The highpoint was 200 yards east up the hill in a grassy swath cleared for a pipeline. The hike was short but somewhat steep, gaining about 170 feet in this short distance. A pipeline marker is found near the top, then the actual top is visible about another 100 feet away. A small clearing ringed by trees is the summit, with no views. I stayed briefly, then hiked back to my car. I was soaking wet from the damp knee-high grass. Ultimately, this wasn't a terribly memorable highpoint, but it was nice to get the first one done.
I exited back to eastbound Interstate-70, coming upon heavy traffic at the Youghiogheny River, where a truck carrying watermelons had overturned. Every single one was smashed open. The cab was upright and no one looked hurt. It was easily the best-smelling vehicle crash I've ever come upon.
|Summary Total Data|
| Total Elevation Gain:||170 ft / 51 m|
| Round-Trip Distance:||0.3 mi / 0.5 km|
| Trailhead:||1402 ft / 427 m|
| Route Conditions:||Unmaintained Trail|
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