Monday, September 29, 2008

Mt. Wilson and Ice Box Climb Out Hikes

We did a lot of hiking this past weekend! On Saturday, seven hikers scrambled to Mt. Wilson, the highest summit in Red Rock Canyon. We followed the route that Eva and I found years ago. The route travels about halfway up First Creek Canyon before entering a Hidden Bowl. The bowl is steep and gains almost 1,200 feet. There's not a lot of scrambling on this route, but it's a real thigh burner. At the summit I found an email I had printed out years ago and placed at the summit. This is the email (some of you might of heard about) where a ranger calls me a "menace to society." Over the years I have told the story and without exception it gets a big laugh. I told the ranger that I would be printing out both his email and his wife's email (she sent me an email with more spelling mistakes than the law allows. It's also at the summit for your reading pleasure) and placing the emails at the summit of Mt. Wilson. That was almost nine years ago. For nine years they were too lazy to retrieve those emails and for nine years people have been laughing at them. I guess for some people that's normal! Back to important stuff! View from the near the summit. We descended via the super shortcut and got back to the cars by 4 pm.
Notes: We set a few more cairns and cleaned the route in places. It's easy to protect the down climb on the super shortcut route.

On Sunday, Nick, Leo, Dana and I did Ice Box Climb Out. This is one of the best routes in Red Rock Canyon. It's kind of ironic that the route does not travel to a peak. We started at Ice Box Canyon trailhead and ascended Two Fools Chute. After long traverse we were standing at Ice Box Canyon Overlook. The waterfall at the end of Ice Box Canyon is dry. After more traversing we dropped into Ice Box Canyon. It's a steep canyon with walls rising over 1,000 feet on both sides. The final climb out of the bowl is steep with plenty of exposure. Once out we followed the hiker's path back to the top of the escarpment and then down North Peak Path to Rocky Gap Road. Thanks to Hikin Dave's idea we left a car at the end of Willow Springs. This saved us at least 90 minutes over descending the Goodman Peak route.