Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Bill's Peak 9.7.10

 The weather hasn't been my friend of late, the last two outings resulted in no summits and very wet gear. I monitored the weather all week and it looked like once again I was in for a wet outing. I tried to make the best of it by doing something in Teanaway and hoped for the "Teanaway Effect" that has served me well in the past. Since Bill's Peak is one of the few remaining victims in the area, I thought I would roll the dice and see if the weather gods would afford me a break.

  Leaving home the weather was unsettled but looked only to be showers which would be a marked improvement over the last two weeks. The road after 29 Pines was much better than my last foray earlier this Spring. The road looks like it has been recently graded. The spur that leads to the Beverly Turnpike trailhead still has some areas that require some care but was very passable. I geared up and right on cue as I shouldered my pack the rain started. I expected rain so I pressed on. Thankfully the shower passed and the sky lightened. For a brief second I expected the sun to break through, too bad for me it stayed behind the clouds. The clouds raised enough to see Bill's impressive South face, thankfully I wasn't going up it. I made good time to 4th Pass and my jump off point. The first few hundred feet are on some soft loose soil making for slow going. Once reaching the ridgeline the ground firmed up making for faster progress. I stayed on the margin of the South face until about 6300' where I traversed North for a short ways looking for the easiest path. There were a few areas that required my hands but for the most part the ascent was benign. After reaching the summit area I was faced with a choice of high points. Since the clouds were obscuring my sight lines I had a hard time determining which was the highest. To me it looked like the Northern point was higher so I course headed south on easy ground. The last 15 feet was not dog friendly and was very slippery. Since I was pretty sure that this was not the high point I merely tapped the top without actually standing on it. I don't know if there was a register or not. I slowly downclimbed and headed North. The Northern summit involved a short traverse and I found a nice crack that gave me access to the final portion. This last 15 feet was covered in black lichen and was very slippery. I didn't find a register so I am guessing the Southern point is the true summit. I had hoped for a quick lunch but a stiff shower rolled through with heavy rain and some mixed precipitation.

  I decided that it would be best to have my lunch someplace drier. I stayed mostly on route until the point where I had traversed, here I erred and headed straight down. The terrain was mostly heather and small shrubs making for some very wet, slippery going. The terrain pushed me further North and I zigzagged down some small rocky areas and was forced to make a unpleasant small stream crossing. Finally I hit the lower slopes and was able to regain the 4th Pass trail. I had reached the trail about 400' of climb below the pass and my legs were very heavy as I slowly made my way back to the pass. Once at the pass I dropped to the small campsite at around 5200' and had a quick bite. The balance of the trip was made with me head down and the tunes blazing. While the weather did it's best to try to sabotage this trip I can say that I am very happy to persevere and add r victim #56 to my Back Court 100 list.

Approx 9 miles 3700' of climb 5:10 Car to Car

1 comment:

  1. Thanks much for the topo route to Bill's! Glad I didn't need to all the way to Fourth/Ingalls Creek junction to hop on the ridge and backtrack. That would have been a very long day.


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