Getting to the so called TH on the North Creek road has already been covered. At the second creek crossing, walk across the stream or use the log to keep your feet dry and follow a rapidly deteriorating jeep road that is soon totally covered in overhanging bushes and downed trees.
Stay as close as you can on the old jeep track, you will not need to re-cross the stream at any point. When you come to a small clearing, this is a good point to start ascending the mountain. The slope above the vegetation and to the east of a rocky band is pretty straightforward. We just made our way upward, often avoiding talus slopes by sticking with the trees, none of which were too thick to have to fight our way through although at times we preferred the talus to gain elevation. You will find your own route on this effort as all will eventually lead to the summit.
I'll include some GPS coordinates under the route description section
From where we parked our car at the 7500 foot level, a level spot with a camp fire ring, we walked the road up to the 2nd stream crossing and crossed on the log presently there. We followed the jeep track up and eventually decided to head up at this point (click here)
After pushing our way through some heavy vegetation, we accessed an open hillside and proceeded upwards, using our summit GPS co-ordinates as a guide. I have listed a few of the
places that I took waypoints as a guide. Still, you will find your own way as you work your way up this. I present these waypoints as an aide to your efforts alhough you may wonder why I took so many. I am a GPS junkie, and love this stuff.
That was the route we took up. Flagging ribbon would work too as it would save stupid detours into clothes ripping brush on the way down.
Elevation gain: 3400 feet 3 miles to summit, all cross country
for six miles round trip.
Add one mile each way to do the Lincoln county HP and an additional 1000 feet (ups and downs) if you go back via the top of Mt. Grafton (I recommend this rather than sidehilling as it is actually easier)
Sturdy footwear and sun protection. Carry plenty of water, this is a hot clime.
Winter / early Springtime:
Depending on snow conditions, you might need crampons or ice axe.
Most likely you could get along without the crampons. You have to call it according to the conditions. Snowshoes may be necessary after a heavy snowfall.
Fall: Hunting season, wear some orange.
From Grafton to the Lincoln county liner
When you top out on Mt. Grafton, look to the south and you'll follow the ridge down from Mt. Grafton to a small bump which you can bypass on the east side to a larger bump, which I refer to as point 10802. You could bypass this on the west but would have some talus scrambling to deal with so I felt it was easiest just to go up over the top of this and drop down onto the south side of point 10802 where the HP of Lincoln county can be found. Just prior to dropping down, you will come across a strange cairn that consists of a huge amount of rocks all bound together with wire. That is not the HP, the Hp is down the ridgeline (seek the top of the ridgeline as you go down. You'll find another cairn at the 10740 level, complete with register.
While it is signed by many many climbers, I felt (as did my partner independent from me) that the true high point was another 120 lower on this ridgeline. Talus abounds everywhere so you need to watch your footing as the angle is steep but the HP (according to my GPS) was in the talus area just above a group of trees. When you "find" the HP, reverse your route and return the way you came. Be careful of the loose talus and I speak from experience. I made one lousy misjudgement of a rock and damaged my right knee. Believe me, I was being careful and that is why I feel it best to not do this one solo.