Ascent of Cayuga County High Point on 2014-04-06

Climber: Greg Slayden

Others in Party:Muriel Everhart (Stayed behind)
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Sunday, April 6, 2014
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Cayuga County High Point
    Location:USA-New York
    Elevation:1860 ft / 566 m

Ascent Trip Report

My Mom and I parked at the trailhead parking lot on Bear Swamp Road. We could not drive any further because beyond the lot the roads (and entire area) were snow-covered. Ignoring the many cross-country ski trails, which were icy with packed snow, we hiked north on Bear Swamp Road, then took a left on Ridge Road. The roads were icy in spots, but the edges usually held some soft snow.

We passed the tiny cemetery on the left (5 graves of the Wilcox family) and when we were near the highest contours I took off into the snowy woods alone, agreeing to meet my Mom back at the cemetery. I headed west to the middle long N-S contour and found the highest spot near its north end (Jean Laverdure's highest ground in his TR on this site), and then I headed south, occasionally post-holing in the snow and every now and then intersecting cross-country ski trails.

I made my way to the larger SE contour and saw a high hill in the woods near its north end, and this is my guess as the highest ground in that area--a canvas lawn chair incongruously marked this spot. I then explored the main south lobe of this contour and made my way back to Ridge Road.

The contours on the USGS map did not match the terrain very well so it was frustrating to explore this area. At least the snow cover and lack of foliage in these winter conditions made for pretty easy bushwhacking and I could see around pretty well. I did not visit the tiny northern contour, since given the terrain I felt there was a less than 1% chance it held some kind of pinnacle rising higher than the two bigger contours. My Mom had already waited a while for me to return.

We hiked back to the car on the roads uneventfully. We saw no one on our entire hike this Sunday morning, but a truck was driving in to the trailhead just as we were heading out. The area does seem to be popular with cross-country skiers in the snowy season, and we even saw some mountain bike tracks in the snow.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:280 ft / 85 m
    Round-Trip Distance:4.2 mi / 6.8 km
    Route:Ridge Rd
    Trailhead:Bear Swamp Parking  1580 ft / 481 m
    Quality:3 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail, Bushwhack, Snow on Ground
    Weather:Cool, Calm, Clear

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