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Ascent of Platte Mounds on 2015-07-17

Climber: John Hasch

Date:Friday, July 17, 2015
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Platte Mounds
    Location:USA-Wisconsin
    Elevation:1440 ft / 438 m

Ascent Trip Report

CoHP – LAFAYETTE COUNTY, WISCONSIN
PLATTE MOUNDS
1440+ ft.

Friday, 7/17/2015

The purpose of this trip was damage control. The third time is a charm, they say. Well, I wasn’t leaving today without putting this hill to bed once and for all.

Recall that I had previously visited here on 1/13/2007 and then again on 1/18/2008. In 2007, I did not know at the time that this was a county HP. In 2008, I returned. I climbed the south hill again. I knew there was another peak to the north, but I did not have good knowledge of where it was. With only a compass in hand, I headed north. I got to what I believed was the highest ground. I dropped off the hill to the west and did a road walk back to my car. When I got home, I looked and topo maps and realized I probably had not been to the north summit. I had ended too soon. The true summit surely must have been farther north. DRATS!

This time I was prepared. I had good maps and I still had my compass, and I even had a GPS. And this was the first stop of the day, so I had as much time as I needed. I arrived at the south mound and climbed the stairs as before. This time, I noted that the tower complex that formerly was atop the mound was gone. All that remained was a lot of tilled soil that told me the transition had recently been made. I saw the dirt roads that dropped off the back side of the mound.

As before, I headed a bit west of north into the brush, heading for the elusive north mound. I fought some brush for about a hundred feet before coming upon a trail. I did not recall a trail from my earlier visits. Since the trail was trending in the right direction, I decided to follow it.

The trail was obviously there for folks who traveled between the two summits. It was generally easy to follow. It dropped down at the expected place between the two mounds, and it rose again as it climbed the north mound. As the trail continued to rise, it eventually wound its way through some large rocky boulders. For a brief moment, I thought this was the summit. Then I saw that the trail continued on, and so did I. A few minutes later, I arrived at the true summit. My GPS confirmed my location as being where I had targeted, so I finally was able to claim the north mound.

This time, when I bushwhacked west off the mound, I arrived at the road north of the curve at the saddle between the two mounds. This was more of an expected arrival point – another confirmation of a successful summit. I walked around the couple turns in the road and back to my car, pleased that the next time I come here, it will truly be a “return”. The total hike was about 2mi R/T with about 260ft of gain.
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