Climbing Log: Mt. Donaldson and Mt. Emmons

Mountains Climbed: Mt. Donaldson, Mt. Emmons
Date of Hike: Saturday, October 18th, 2008
Hikers: Seth C. Burgess, Jessica L. Burgess, Adam C. Chapin, Colleen E. DeCracker, Terry Monje, Tanner Burgess

Trail Conditions: Dry, some ice on ridge

Comments: A group of 5 people and 1 dog. We started from the Seward Range trailhead off Corey's Rd. and were planning on camping at the closest lean-to to go for Seward on Sat. and then Seymour on Sun. A group of returning hikers were so enthusiastic about the trip they had just done up the Calkins Brook herd path that we changed our minds to mimic their trip.

8:27:48 AM - Grizzly Adams leading the pack

Where the Blueberry Foot Trail hits a grassy rd. at 1.2 mi., we turned right down the road and dropped our full-packs at a campsite only 10 minutes down, on the left. Marked by a whittled wooden post and campsite marker--it appeared to be an old horse stable. We set up our tents, then continued along the rd. toward Calkins Brook.

Campsite marker

Before Calkins brook there is a rock cairn marking the herd path to Mt. Donaldson. We turned left onto it, crossed to the south bank of Calkins Brook about 15 min. in (at another cairn), and then followed the mostly well-defined herd path nearly all the way to the summit of Donaldson, where it comes to a T. Turn left for Seward, or do as we did and continue straight on to Donaldson.

Rock cairn indicating start of Calkins Brook herdpath

Calkins Brook crossing at 2nd cairn

View of Seward from herdpath "T" below Donaldson

The herdpath continues to Donaldson and on to Emmons, with about a 1-hour travel time between the two peaks. After summiting the southernmost of the Seward Range (Emmons), we returned to Donaldson and then headed back down the Calkins Brook herdpath--the last half of it with headlamps. It wasn't too bad following the herdpath in the dark, although I wouldn't have planned for it. The dog also helped!

Seymour from Mt. Donaldson's summit

Atop Mt. Emmons

Hard to give a round trip time that might be useful to others as we had an inconvenient hip injury slowing us down on the way back to the campsite. Props to Terry for toughing it out, though.

Special Equipment Required: Dog - useful for following a herdpath in the dark!



Adam C. Chapin said...

Sweet, Hope to see some good video of this one in the Future?

Gerry Benedict said...

Sounds like a great hike. I am surprised to see no early spring snow packs. You must have encountered some patches on northeastern exposed trails. Keep up the great spirit!
Gerry Benedict

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