Henry Mountain 13234
Square Top Mountain 12985 (unranked)
I had been wanting to climb these peaks for some time, I decided to bag these lesser climbed summits from the north. The beta for these peaks was limited to none. On the topo it looked like the ridge would go, so Ben G and I tried it.
We started hiking at 6:15 from the Lottis Creek TH. The north ridge of 12684 wastes no time in gaining elevation. A series of game trails and open forest made travel quick up the steep ridge. Just below treeline we saw a helicopter. Once above treeline it was a gentle grassy ridge to the summit where we arrived at 8:40.
Typical bush whacking terrain
Out of the trees
Only 4 miles to Henry
The ridge to 12842 is just over two miles long. It was easy grass down to the saddle. We traversed the minor ridge bumps on the west side. There were two class 3 steps on ridge. At 10:00 we summited.
Terrain off of 12684
Summit block of 12842
The traverse to Henry looked spicy. The descent went quickly on talus and grass. Ascending the ridge went from class 2 to 2+, and finally to solid class 3. The quality of the rock was superb and the best route was near the ridge crest. The great scrambling ended abruptly, we took a short break before ascending the final 400 feet to Henry. We summited at 12:30.
View of entire ridge
Class 3 ridge
Close up of ridge
Me on class 3 ridge (photo Ben)
Looking down at the ridge
Gentle terrain near Henry
Square top was close and we made the summit at 1:15. At this point we decided against continuing the traverse towards 12446. This allowed us to follow the ridge crest down to gunsight pass and to fossil hunt. We spent about an hour on the ridge studying the 600 million year old fossils, admiring the early versions of multicellular life. We've come a long ways from our humble origins in the sea. The rest of the ridge was a time consuming class 3 scramble. I was glad I read about gunsight pass to know what it looked like.
Trail down from gunsight
Waterfall on descent
The 8 mile hike out was long but pretty, we saw some very large beaver ponds and lodges. We arrived back at the car at 6:30, a stop at pizza works was in order.