Saturday, May 13, 2017

W6/CT-012 Waterman Mountain

It was a beautiful Friday, which means it was time to go hiking. This time I headed up to the Angeles Crest Highway to activate Waterman Mountain and Kratke Ridge. First up was Waterman Mounatain. I parked at the Buckhorn Flat Day Use Area and hit the trail. I found the road and trail junction, but misread my map and turned right instead of left. This led back to my car, and not uphill. I retraced my steps, and headed up the trail in the correct direction. Later analysis showed that the trailhead does not match what is shown on the map, but it was close enough I should have been able to figure it out.
View on the way up. Mt Hamilton Observatory.
There is a seasonal stream that the trail crosses, and it still had water in it. Hiking up felt like I was in the Sierra, and it was a pleasant walk up to the summit. At the top I poked around the rocks for a few minutes before finding a place to set up. There was a nice rock to sit on on the lee side of the hill, so it wasn't so cold. I set up, then had an apple. There was no cell signal, so no self-spotting. I called on 20 meters, RBNHole spotted me, and I quickly worked 12 people, including one summit-to-summit with KX0R in Colorado. I was planning a second summit, so I didn't spend time on other bands, wanting to save some battery for later. I'm still not sure how long the internal KX3 batteries will last.
Top of a ski lift.
The way down was pleasant, with no navigational errors. At one switchback the trail passes the top of an old ski lift. No skiers this time of the year. Overall this was a very nice hike.

Trailhead: Angeles Crest Highway at Buckhorn Flat.
Website: SOTA Site. Lots of more detailed trip reports.
Maps: KB1KXL SOTA Hikes map. Zoom in on the area.
Route: Waterman Mountain Loop Trail.
Red Tape: Adventure pass needed for parking.

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