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A Failed Attempt on Mighty Limestone Ridge and Barnes Peak
Timestamp Free: 2021.01.20 - 20:16:00
Ranges: North America Ranges / Rocky Mountains / Canadian Rockies / Continental Ranges / Front Ranges / Taylor Range
(1 days) Elevation Gain: 690m
Participants: Rick Collier, Christine Grotefeld, Carmie Callanan, Mardy Roberts
Difficulty: 2: Some navigation problems; moderate bushwhacking
A brief account of an aborted attempt on Barnes Peak
On June 30th we drove off north up toward Flathead Pass, heading for at least a rekky of Limestone Ridge; however, this being spring, we were delayed a considerable time by a treacherous crossing of Squaw Creek - a huge fir had fallen diagonally across the stream and the road bed; the only solution, other than an ignominious retreat, was to stand in the midst of the rushing water, freezing my poor feet and legs, with my chain saw and slowly cut away the branches and much of the upper trunk of this blockage. After about an hour of rather nasty and dangerous work, I had enough of the tree dismembered that we were able to push the rest into the torrent. After that, all that remained was to lumber across the whitewater in the truck . . . which we did, but not without some serious cardiac palpitations.
The rest of the drive to the pass was uneventful except for some stretches of deep snow and ice patches, which, once again, the truck negotiated with strength and grace.
We started our search for Limestone right at the pass and wandered about in delightful forest, still wet and very green from winter run-off, navigating by compass; eventually we climbed a snow-slope to the crest of the ridge proper quite near where it turns from a SW direction to northerly. We continued along this ridge to its north end (just a km east of Barnes Lake), but by then, the wind was howling and the temps were quite frigid. Still, we could see the summit of Limestone (which in Bivouac is called Barnes Peak - 8020') beckoning us on, only two km and 900' away. But conditions were too nasty and so we retreated, saving this fine ridge walk for another day. Ah, if only it weren't for the all too persistent wind down here.
[See the trip reports for Mount Broadwood and Mount Corrigan for the start...
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