Note: 100 yards in, at the fork with 2 gates there are a whole lot of blue no trespassing signs to the right. One is ambiguously places such that it *may* indicate the road to the left is off-limits also. I assume this is the adjacent property owner’s intent, to deter travelers like us. As it was I encountered several hunters driving the road (how did they get keys, by the way?) who did not bat an eye at us.
Confession: I did not take the bushwhack but instead opted for the road. Although this was not my initial plan (though for what it is worth the point where the bushwhack generally begins is relatively easy to spot), I opted for the road at the last minute for a few reasons:
* It had been raining heavily and I did not want to contend with wet vegetation on steep terrain;
* My boots are presently at the cobbler for repair after a season of abuse;
* My dogs and I were rear-ended at high speed on I-5 earlier this week and are all still relatively stiff and sore — so I was certain that slipping and sliding would not be the best for me today.
As it is the roads up to and around the summit have long been decommissioned, with felled trees and branches to deter motorists of small vehicles. (And it certainly does appear to have been overkill in spots.). So the road offers a fair amount of hopping over and crouching under obstacles, albeit on gentler terrain. Even still the logs were considerably wet and slippery.
This is not a bad route, just more circuitous and less timely. Mileage was 10.5 miles in 4.5 hours including lunch at the cairn (we are slow today). Map reading and route finding skills are essential as these old roads are an entangled web and there are multiple junctions. Also the last section to the summit cairn requires bushwhacking no matter what route you take.
I was able to drive to the end of the road, but I had to squeeze past the remains of what appeared to be two professionally stripped cars. WA Cohp 9/39
I had to walk the road due to a tree down but my walk was still a lot shorter than it would be if you walked that road now.
Went up after work, I was setting up DNR timber sales nearby:)
It helped that the gate was open otherwise it is a long drive on forest roads to get to the base of this one. If it hadn't of been a county highpoint, I wouldn't have bothered.
This was a nice summit climb, and I am very glad I took the short bushwhack route. When I opened the summit register jar, I was very pleased to see the names of many prominent county highpointers who had also made the summit. This was my 5th WA CoHP, and my 40th CoHP overall.