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HOME OF THE 'TALL MAN'... (And you can see the blog pictures below in much greater detail simply by clicking on them)

Saturday, May 23, 2015

High run cut short

I set out to explore a high ridge (north spur off of Crater Mountain) between two big drainages, and I did to a limited extent. The delimiting factor, unfortunately, was a series of snow squalls that I didn't expect and for which I wasn't prepared. This one is blowing in from the Continental Divide, to the east, and in addition to wetness it was windy. When I saw those coming, I cut short my exploration of what otherwise would have been a fascinating old mine site, maybe even a kind of ghost town.

This is a fenced-off mine adit and some kind of burner equipment that I couldn't identify sitting next to it. A lot of iron, in any case.

The piece of equipment looked as if it was ready for a really hot fire, but I have no idea of what it is.

There were several old buildings nearby, but the weather chased me back toward my car before I had a chance to explore them. The area of the adit and the buildings was clear of woods, and either was ever thus or had been cleared many years ago. A few roads wound around to several small peaks, which I did manage to visit.

The altitude of the entire run was above 6,300, and the highest point that I noticed was about 6,800.

If it had been a sunny, warm day (as I was expecting), this would be the spot where I'd spin in circles singing, "The hills are alive ..." As it turned out, I simply noted the presence of a number of beautiful meadows at high altitude.

I mentioned that the run took place on a high ridge between two relatively major drainages. This one lies on the east side of the ridge, and is Hogum Creek. There are cabins and other structures far below (probably 2,000 feet below), and the creek flows north into the Blackfoot River about seven miles east of Lincoln.

This is the drainage on the west side of the ridge, Seven-Up-Pete Creek. It joins the Blackfoot about a mile downstream from Hogum Creek's mouth.

This is the only structure (or ruin) that I photographed. Hard to say what it was — the roof of something — but its distance from the mine would suggest it might have been a house.

I plan to return to this spot sometime when the weather won't chase me away.

Although it was at relatively high altitude, it was not a particularly strenuous run. It had plenty of vistas and a number of interesting things that I want to poke around some more.

It also had quite a few flowers that I really liked. Here are more glacier lilies, a couple of shooting stars and, separately, a cluster of Indian paintbrush. I also saw bluebells, strawberry blossoms, arrowleaf balsamroot and many more.

I wore only light sweatpants, a long-sleeved athletic t-shirt with a short one over it, and a bandana on my head. I had neither gloves nor hat, which explains why I vamoosed when I saw the squalls rolling in.

I survived with no difficulty, but I was cold and lit a fire when I got home.

10; 30.5; 98.5; 411.5
Posted by Mose, 12:51 PM


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