Ascent of Fish Benchmark on 2015-02-28

Climber: Brian Browning

Date:Saturday, February 28, 2015
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:4x4 Vehicle
Peak:Fish Benchmark
    Elevation:2334 ft / 711 m

Ascent Trip Report

Refer to Eagle Benchmark page for ascent details...

Our descent was again, rather unplanned. With no beta, I was aiming for the unnamed NE ridge leading off Fish BM summit, but our group opted for an unnamed NE canyon descent that worked out extremely well. We headed north off the summit to the flats just over 2,000' and dropped into the large bowl and eventually found the canyon bottom. That lead us down bouldery, yet easy terrain to just above 1,500' where the canyon heads NE. We could not see the whole route and were worried we'd hit an impasse and be faced with an ugly traverse around it or a brutal ascent back out to easier terrain. We decided to take our chances and continued down the canyon wash over a mix of mostly solid class 2 and class 3 rocks that, at times, reached a 50 degree down slope. The crux occurred at about 950' where a 70' dry fall with a class 4 move presented itself. My companions traversed around on loose class 2 slopes and I was able to bypass the move pretty easily with a class 3 downclimb. At about 600' the canyon angle lessens and we reached the railroad tracks at about 50' in elevation and walked the 1.75 miles back to the parking spot.

I highly recommend this descent route to anyone.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:400 ft / 121 m
    Total Elevation Loss:2744 ft / 836 m
    Grade/Class:Class 3
    Quality:7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Open Country, Scramble, Exposed Scramble
    Weather:Pleasant, Breezy, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:2744 ft / 836 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 2344 ft / 714 m; Extra: 400 ft / 121m
    Gain on way out:400 ft / 121 m
    Distance:3.6 mi / 5.8 km
    Route:Unnamed N-NE Canyon
    End Trailhead:Split Mountain RR  -10 ft / -3 m
Ascent Part of Trip: Fish Creek Mtns

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Eagle Benchmark2015-02-28 a3581 ft / 1091 m
2Fish Benchmark2015-02-28 b400 ft / 122 m
Total Trip Gain: 3981 ft / 1213 m    Total Trip Loss: 3981 ft / 1213 m

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