Ascent of Low Knob on 2013-07-14

Climber: Michael Schwartz

Others in Party:Fred Lobdell
Date:Sunday, July 14, 2013
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Low Knob
    Elevation:1996 ft / 608 m

Ascent Trip Report

The otherwise undistinguished Low Knob is noteworthy for being the nearest higher summit to the High Point, New Jersey's highest point.

From I-84 exit 30, go south about four miles on PA-402 to a sign for High Knob Fire Tower Road. From I-80 take exit 309 to US-209 north. At a roundabout, see signs for Business route 209 and PA-402. Once on PA-402, go about 21 miles to the Fire Tower Road turnoff. The road to High Knob, inside the Delaware State Forest, is drivable by passenger cars, but unfortunately is gated near the bottom. Good parking nearby. We hiked up the road, which passes within 1/4 mile of Low Knob, but the way was barred by cliffs and heavy overgrowth. At point N41.30705 W75.12237, where the gradient to the right (W) lessens and woods opened up, we bushwhacked almost up the summit ridge, then headed north and east through open woods toward Low Knob. The actual ridgeline at this point was covered in thick scrub. At about 500 feet from the summit, we ran into nasty oak scrub and laurel and had to crash through it until finding a large pine tree that seemed to be on highest ground. Rather than return through the same crud, we headed for the NW ridge, again having to crash through very thick scrub, but finally broke out into open woods and followed the ridge down to the utility line right-of-way. From there we followed the good r.o.w. road east to PA-402 and walked south via the highway to the turnoff to the car. This is a better hike to attempt when the undergrowth has died down, and there may well be a decent route through the cliffs from the fire tower road directly up to Low Knob. Our route was considerable longer and no picnic.
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