Peak 7951 (Pike Peak) by Livingston Douglas

Elevation: 7,951 ft
Prominence: 1,011

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This peak is not in the book. The proposed name honoring a USGS surveyor was suggested by Rick Baugher. Published November 2019


Peak 7951 is the highest of three ranked summits surrounding South Worm Creek Basin. Unlike the other two peaks, this peak is a rocky one with sheer cliffs on its southeast face. Peak 7951 has a magnificent, challenging southeast ridge that leads down to the Hull Valley BSA Camp along FSR-407/Birch Creek Road. The summit has a USGS BM in a massive ground boulder. The easiest ascent route is via a use trail coming up the Southwest Shoulder from a high ridge saddle. USGS Mink Creek

Southwest Shoulder/South Ridge, Class 2

Date of Climb: September 13, 2019

Access

Same as for the Southeast Shoulder Route on Peak 7462. This is the final leg of a multi-peak climb of ranked summits surrounding South Worm Creek Basin.

The Climb

From the unsigned trail junction in the center of South Worm Creek Basin, follow an unmaintained, weak trail heading ENE up into the forest. This is FST-374 according to the most recent Cache National Forest map. The USGS topo map also shows this trail in existence. Unfortunately, the trail soon is covered with brush and blowdown in the forest and completely disappears in the thick brush. Bushwhack NE up through the remainder of the dense forest to reach the willow-clogged, wide, rounded Southwest Shoulder.

Fight your way up through this thicket of bushes/willows/scrub to reach areas of open scrub and, higher up, stumble upon a decent use trail in the open scrub on the ill-defined ridge crest or just R/E of the ridge crest. I believe that this trail begins at the ridge saddle a little ways E of where I reached the saddle, which is why I failed to see it there through the thick willows. This use trail runs all the way to the rocky summit of Peak 7951.

When you reach the convergence of the Southwest Shoulder and the Southeast Ridge, the ridge narrows considerably and is quite rocky. Higher up, the ridge is almost knife-edged, but it is magnificent and offers splendid views of the surrounding area. Thanks to the use trail, you quickly reach the small, rocky summit area. There is a USGS BM on the high point, a massive ground boulder.

Southeast Ridge, Class 3

Access

Same as for the Southwest Shoulder/South Ridge Route.

The Descent

From the summit, descend the South Ridge to just past the narrow, knife-edged ridge section. Leave the use trail to descend the Southeast Ridge here. You must descend several steep, rocky outcrops (with plenty of bushes/brush intermingled with them). This is a rough, Class 3 endeavor until you reach calmer, less-steep terrain farther down the ridge. You can now see the large meadow and the Hull Valley BSA Camp down below, WAY DOWN BELOW.

Continue to follow the ridge crest SE then SSE. The left side of the ridge crest generally works better. The ridge crest itself is too cliffed/blocky to stay directly on it. Once the rocky outcrops disappear, the terrain is open scrub. The pine forest soon takes over and your visuals become impaired. Before you enter the forest, get a visual of where you want to pop out of the forest down in the meadow at the BSA camp. You should aim for a large building on the L/E side of the meadow at the BSA camp. A jeep road leads up to this building from the Forest Service Road. This is all visible from the open ridge as you descend.

After you enter the forest, stay near the ridge crest, to the L/E of a prominent gully. You will find cattle trails in the forest to help you make your way through the dense forest and brush. Lower down, the forest opens up and the cattle trails are more prevalent. Cruise through this final section to enter the meadow at the N end of the BSA camp. Hike N along the L/E side of the meadow to quickly pick up the jeep road on the N side of the large building. The BSA Camp was closed and boarded up for the season when I passed through.

Follow the BSA jeep road down to its junction with FSR-407/Birch Creek Road. Hike SSW down FSR-407 to its junction with FSR-406 and your parking spot. Please note that the Hull Valley BSA Camp is heavily posted and is private property. I was blissfully unaware of this until after I exited the BSA Camp and reached FSR-407 and read the signage on the gate blocking access to the BSA jeep road. Worst case, you could always skirt the W side of the BSA Camp to remain on public land and reach FSR-407 without any potential issues.

Mountain Range: Bear River Range

First Ascent Information:

  • Other First Ascent: Southeast Ridge —Descent
  • Year: 2019
  • Season: Summer
  • Party: Livingston Douglas

Longitude: -111.65839   Latitude: 42.18010

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