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Re: Mt. Clark

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Mt. Clark
August 18, 2013 12:22PM
I've been trying to do Mt. Clark as a day trip for a while now. I tried it twice two years ago but didn't know what I was getting into. Tried it once more this year and failed due to timing restrictions. I was shocked when one of my friends said he wanted to try and do it. I suggested that we do a two day trip and he was persistent on a day trip. I gave him all of the necessary precautions and warnings and told him I don't think we should do it. He didn't care and we headed out Friday night and started hiking around 9pm. He would tell me after the trip that I was charging up the mountain but I was just trying to keep it slow and steady on the up hills and pick up the speed through little yose valley. Went off trail at Bunnell Point and headed up the big incline. Took forever to get to the north west arete but got there and I was tired but still had the summit push in me. My buddy said he couldn't go any further. I was surprised but said that this being the 4th try, I wasn't coming back for a 5th so I continued on. Since this was a day trip, started at practically sea level, and now I was pushing my body hard up at 11k feet, the elevation was absolutely rocking me. The terrain up there sucks with the sand, huge boulders that require non direct routes, and crappy bushes that drain the energy from you. The ridge looked a little sketch but going up the north face seemed easy enough. Got up near the top and I found that I had to use some climbing moves. This was definitely hard class three and some class 4 moves. I'm not sure about the lines between class 4 and 5 but during some of the "i can only go up here, not down," if you fell up here you weren't going to stop until the bottom of the mountain. Made it to the top and was euphoric. Really good time being up there with great views. Slight breeze and blue skies. Couldn't really ask for more. Took 12 hours to get up there. Not the most efficient but took a couple breaks and extended photo shots. I need to thank Bob Burd and Chick-On for the advice and trip reports for getting up there. 23 miles and 7500ft elevation gain.

Night photos near Bunnell

Before the guys left me on my own

On the first bump

Checking out which path I wanted, ended up switching once I got closer and a better view. I was up and over Gendarme Robert (Bob Burd)

Looking at the guys chilling out

Last little bit before the summit. Huge exposure on both sides of this ledge

View of the same thing from the top

Nice selfie at the top

Register with Goodies - btw the books are full so if anyone goes it would be nice to get a new notebook in there. Last person was up there two weeks ago. Register went back to '97

Took a wrong turn on the way back and instead of back tracking we opted to go down the left of Bunnell Point rather than the right. Probably the same steepness but this time its just granite/river crossing rather than the forest.

Watching people play in the water at the base of Vernal. I had mixed feelings about these guys playing there. All I could think about were the people that die from falls each year and how these people were playing around in there resting place. I know the swimmers weren't thinking about this at all but I don't think this is very respectful. I could be wrong on this one and thinking about it differently. On one side - These people are just having fun in a spot that doesn't normally allow these types of activities. On the other - People die here every year from falls and nature should be respected. Not sure how I feel yet. Does anyone else have an opinion on this one?

Pano at up the top
avatar Re: Mt. Clark
August 18, 2013 04:06PM
Bowing to his greatness

Congrats man.

If your last photo is a set of 20 or so or less or more than a few...
consider downloading uSoft ICE software and making a photosynth
If you do you'll go "wow"

Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Mt. Clark
August 19, 2013 10:32AM
Awesome trip! One day wonder! Woo hoo! Good on you for the perseverance, glad it all went smoothly! Wish your friends would have listened to your sage advice, based on real-world past experience, but hey...

And then you have to ask that difficult question. I personally don't think I could swim in that particular spot. I know too much that has happened there. Yup, just thinking about it gives me shivers. There are other pools further downstream... Not to say bad things haven't happened in other places.. but that particular spot... too much for me.

This dredged up a few thoughts I had while soaking in the river nightly near the bridge between the Pines campgrounds and the Stables. We arrived Sunday June 2. I believe I swam in that spot Sunday and almost every other evening the entire 7 days we were there. It's a fair bit downstream, but by absolute distance, isn't that far from Vernal... I heard Monday that the 19-year old had been swept over. I felt a little ikky but figured the water was so high (lots of volume, lots of dilution), so violent at the fall and the rocky section below it that there was little risk of real ick while soaking where we were. (No scientific basis for this feeling, just talked myself into it because I really loved soaking.) But I had no desire to go upstream further. And I thought of the life lost, so preventable... And I guess I decided that spot by the bridge was as close to Vernal as I currently ever care to enter.
Re: Mt. Clark
August 19, 2013 12:27PM
Respect. That is quite a long haul.

I really want to climb Mt. Clark, but that ridge is still a bit more airy than I'm comfotable with. Any idea how it compares to the arete on the south side of the summit?
Re: Mt. Clark
August 19, 2013 02:18PM
Respect. That is quite a long haul.

I really want to climb Mt. Clark, but that ridge is still a bit more airy than I'm comfotable with. Any idea how it compares to the arete on the south side of the summit?

Nope, but I can tell you that there were definitely a couple tricky moves. Couple pieces of protection were placed up there as well for people that wanted to repel down a bit. I didn't end up following the ridge. If you have the energy and trust your scrambling/bouldering skills I would recommend the NW arete as of now.

How would you get to the south side?
avatar Re: Mt. Clark
August 19, 2013 04:42PM
IMO the South Arete is much more difficult than the North. Wuz up there last Oct. with Bigfoot Bearpoof... and we went up
the East Face... following the cairns... which lead us over to the South side of the summit... at which pt. I said
"well.. w/o a rope I'm not going up any more... since I know that the easier way up is WAY over to the north"
So over we went and then up the NW Arete. It's class 3 that way. I highly recommend that way up and back down.
In other words... up the East Side staying fairly close to Clark Canyon... then up to the top once on the Arete.
Of course there are many ways up... and this is just 3 of them.

First time went up was this:

Hope this helps somewhat or is at least amusing

Chick-on is looking at you!
Re: Mt. Clark
August 20, 2013 01:20PM
Thanks chick-on, that does help. Gotta get some more exposed class 3 experience before I tackle this peak, I think. Maybe next year smiling smiley
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