This was a quick trip to county highpoints for Yolo, Sonoma, Napa, Solano, Sacramento, and Yuba.
Yuba was a nice little footnote for the drive back home.
This little bump is certainly off the beaten path! Once we departed the pavement onto Scales Road, it was pretty rough. When it is dry a passenger car could probably make a go of it, but during my visit conditions were quite muddy. Several inches of consistent snow cover started a few miles from the summit, though tracks from previous visitors were encouraging. A little way in I met a lifted Jeep on its way out, but it was the only vehicle I saw after leaving the pavement.
While there were tracks up the pathway to the summit, they were likely from an ORV as it was narrow. I opted to walk from here as it seemed iffy, and besides at least for my dogs, snow is proof that God loves them and wants them to be happy.
It was a short and easy walk with the loud buzz of snowmobiles off in the distance. Snow covered the route the entire way minus the side-path to the summit, though the snowcover was never deep nor hard enough to require snowshoes or microspikes. The side-path to the summit is well-established and obvious.
The summit area is itself broad and wooded with minimal undergrowth, so there was plenty of room to stomp around and be sure we hit it. We did this for about 10 minutes with no sign of the register, which may have been concealed by the snow.
Here are detailed Driving Directions to Yuba County's Highpoint. I found my way with some help from James Bollinger at the Guard Station, and his very detailed local maps. He gave me a number of 530-675-2561 to contact him. Super nice guy. Also, he updated Suttle's book noting that the La Porte Ranger District Station is no more. Rather, that area is now administered through the Feather River Ranger out of Oroville. The number there is 530-534-6500.
- Drive through "downtown" Strawberry Valley.
- A mile or so up the road you will see the "Strawberry Valley Guard Station / Plumas National Forest" on the Left. This is home to a forest fire crew and probably what Gary Suttle referred to as the "fire station" in his book "California County Summits".
- The FS04 road referenced by Suttle is up the street and directly across from the "Strawberry Campground Sly Creek Reservoir" entrance. The Campground is on the Left; FS04 is on the Right. The sign for FS04 has been shot up and is not legible. Don't take this road. This is the one that is washed out and is very unlikely to be repaired in the future per James Bollinger.
- Instead, take a Right on Scales Road on the Right side of the road, which is 1.8 miles up the road from the Guard Station.
- Set your odometer as you turn on to Scales Road which currently has a clean and legible street sign. Scales Road is unpaved.
- Basically, you just stay on this main road for the majority of your drive. That is, stay on the wider and clearer road as turns come up. Still, here are some mileage markers:
- At 0.2 and 0.5 miles from turning onto Scales Road, keep Left.
- At 2.7 cross Slate Creek on the new bridge. There will be a old defunct green bridge to your Left. You have now gone down into the valley between the two ridges and will start climbing back up the next ridge where Sugar Pine Peak is found.
- At 4.0 keep Left despite the Truck Caution Sign (I have no idea if they're actively logging up there but would recommend going after quitting time just to be sure you don't come face to face with a logging truck barrelling down the road. That or check in at the Guard Station and ask if they're logging up there). Due to the sign, I took the right at this fork which took me down and away from the highpoint per my GPS. Had to backtrack.
- At 5.0 pass road 20N 26 on the Left.
- At 5.5 pass road 20N30 on the Right.
- At 6.4 pass another road.
- At 6.6 pass road 21N11E on the Left.
- At 6.8 take a Right Up road 21N68Y. Note that this is the "white gravel road" referred to by Suttle and others. Also note that the vertical brown road sign is hidden on the Right behind greenery and you won't see it.
- At 7.3 as the road peaks out and almost starts descending, the "Jeep Trail" will be on your Left. I took my stock TRD 4Runner about half way up the trail but then ran into too many downed trees. The trail looked very rarely used and is hard to see unless you're looking for it. Up until the trail I would say a standard car should be fine if driven cautiously in good weather; not too bumpy at all for a logging road.
- Continue hiking up the Jeep Trial from the base or whatever for about a quarter mile or so to the "summit".
- the summit is as it has been described as others -- lots of trees on a rolling hilltop.
- I looked around for any sign of a summit marker and finally tripped over it. It consisted of a few branches stood upright with the remnants of a little summit log under some bark. I can pass along pictures if you like. However, I doubt the summit marker is much more accurate than just stomping around. I used my GPS to put me on the county line and found it that way.
- Enjoy and be safe.
Liner! Tagged the pseudo top and then exited during a brief snow incident.
It was a jaunt
With Jobe Wymore and his wife Libby, second of a 4 peak day. We drove Jobe's rented minivan to within a mile of the peak, stopping at the junction with the final dirt road. David Sanger's directions from Peakbagger were very helpful. Snow line was 4,000 feet so we had a nice little snow hike up the road to the HP. Found the cement block which seems to be on the wrong side of the county line. Had to stomp around to make sure we hit the liner for the Yuba County HP. TR is HERE
Scales Road is washed out just to the SW of Slate Creek. It is a 13 mi. RT hike if you park here. There appears to be a way around, as I saw tire tracks on the roads that were recent. The wash out is the same area repaired ~2007. It may not be repaired again for a while.
Part of a 3 day, mostly driving, weekend covering Lost Lake Ridge, this, Ingalls, Elwell, Sierra Buttes, Lola, and Lola North.
While not much of a hike (or peak for that matter), the drive through the area was new to me and therefore worth it. Perfect fall day with a light drizzle and cool temps. Hiked with Ol Walsher. Couldn't find the register but did locate the concrete cyclinder. By the looks of the tags on the trees, the area is set to be logged come spring.
Went with Jonodo. The hardest part about this Cohp is finding the summit.
I whined a little, but it was pretty easy. Not much of a peak.
... the "peak" more or less sucked. Only I drove almost 5hrs, not 2hrs. Lost Lake Ridge in the afternoon (Butte Co HP) was much better. Did this with son Ryan. Trip Report
Just doing the County HP's. In 02 the Summit reg. was in a jar about 30 to 40ft to the east of the tree with the pinecones in it.
This is one of those highpoints that may make you question yourself whether this is a good use of your time.
We went in on a thursday unaware they were logging up beyond the narrow road that runs down into the canyon and were fortunate enough to miss two logging trucks by about 5 minutes on that narrow section. We would have been forced to back up a long ways with the truckers cussing us out. Not much of a hike to the HP and found no register although we found the pine tree with the pine cones stuffed into it as well as the concrete cylinder.
Wanted this one for a while. Drove up from Grass Valley, only taking 2 hours from there. Didn't really have a problem finding it either. Was expecting to find a register at the summit, yet just found a concrete cylinder thing. Fun outing though. I'd even head up there again if I'm in the area.