Ascent of Higby Mountain-South Peak on 2016-05-14

Climber: Mike Dow

Others in Party:Cathy Copas
Pam Walker
Brant Walker
Date:Saturday, May 14, 2016
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Higby Mountain-South Peak
    Elevation:828 ft / 252 m

Ascent Trip Report

This was a south to north through trip on the Mattabesset Trail.

One car was left at the Country Club Rd trailhead which is a little muddy with all of the rain that we have had, so I parked along the access road leading into the parking lot.

The other car was parked in the parking lot on Rt 66 that is at the base of the blue & red blazed trail that connects to the Mattabesset Trail. We got there before 9 in the morning and were the only car in the parking lot, but around 12 when we returned, the cars were overflowing into the shoulder of the highway. As an alternative, you could park at Guida's, which is renowned for their hot dogs, but I don't know what there policy regarding that would be. If you did, there is easy access on the western edge of the parking lot. It would also be a convenient place for people to wait if you were hiking southbound on this stretch of the trail.

There is a sign that details the route along this stretch of the trail. It says that it is 3.6 miles to the Country Club Road trailhead, but my GPS said it was closer to 4.5.

After about 50 yards, we met up with the main trail (blue blazes). The trail pushes fairly steadily up the trail. There isn't any true scrambling, but there are some sections where there are some large steps up the rock. About 200 feet of elevation is gained in the first 1/2 mile of the trail.

If you are scared of heights, this might be a little intimidating. Although there are alternative paths that are farther from the edge, there are always places where you can see just how steep the cliffs are.

For those of you are not intimidated by cliffs, it is a beautiful view toward the west (Meriden and Wallingford). Somewhere I read that you could see Long Island Sound from there, but that you have to be extraordinary visibility. It was clear and dry, and we could see the buildings in New Haven, but they were hazy.

The highest point was on the last of the series of ups and downs, before you start heading down into the Notch.

There are more steep places to descend, but for the most part it is a matter of finding good foot placement rather than sliding down. There is an elevation loss of about 200 feet in 1/3 mile, which would make this difficult on a southbound trip.

At the lowest point in Preston Notch, there is a stream flowing over some of the rocks. There is a trail that descends straight to the bottom from there, or you can continue on the Mattabesset to the main peak of Higby.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:286 ft / 87 m
    Total Elevation Loss:216 ft / 65 m
    Round-Trip Distance:1.5 mi / 2.4 km
    Quality:4 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Clear
Beautiful day to be on the mountain
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:286 ft / 87 m
    Distance:1.2 mi / 1.9 km
    Route:Mattabesset Trail
    Start Trailhead:Route 66 Trailhead Parking Lot  542 ft / 165 m
    Time:1 Hours 7 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:216 ft / 65 m
    Distance:0.3 mi / 0.6 km
    Route:Mattabesset Trail
    End Trailhead:Preston Notch  612 ft / 186 m
    Time:18 Minutes
Ascent Part of Trip: Higby Mountain

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Higby Mountain-South Peak2016-05-14 a286 ft / 87 m
2Higby Mountain2016-05-14 b280 ft / 85 m
Total Trip Gain: 566 ft / 172 m    Total Trip Loss: 816 ft / 249 m
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Mike Dow
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

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