Saturday, June 18, 2011

Iron Mountain 2nd try

Today we gave Iron Mountain another try.
Team members John, Danny and Jack hit the trailhead (2030') at 7am and we moved quickly up the steep trail.  We stashed our extra water and gear at the first saddle about an hour later at 3042'.   We pressed on through the cloud cover and up and down a few ridges until we stopped for a break at a small fire pit that someone made.  This put us at about 4600' and from there the trail rarely gave us a minute of relief from the uphill ascent.  The sun came out and so did the relentless flies that stayed with us the rest of the trip up.  At about 6000', the trail turns more into rock climbing than hiking for the remaining 2000 feet to the summit. This meant a few steps at a time for another two hours with biting flies and a hot sun so we decided to throw in the towel and turn around. We would have really liked to have made the summit especially with it less than 2 miles away but a 4500' gain in about 4 hours is pretty respectable.  Coming down meant having to butt slide every once in a while but we made it down quickly and enjoyed a nice cold foot bath in the San Gabriel River at the end of the trail.
There won't be a third attempt on this mountain.

Jack took a bunch of pics and I will post them later.