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The Vinegar Hill Eclipse Expedition Part 2 Vinegar Hill
Timestamp Free: 2018.04.23 - 09:19:24
Ranges: North America Ranges / Great Basin Ranges / Blue Mountains Oregon
  (3 days)     Elevation Gain: 800m
Participants: Klaus Haring
Difficulty: 2:
The long hike to Vinegar Hill and final climb to Indian Rock for the eclipse.
I had wanted to climb Vinegar Hill too because it was the highest in the area. The Princess Trail running along the ridge was described as 9.3mi to FSR2010 in my FS brochure. With some more road further east that would make a very long return trip, perhaps too far from a car camp even further west. So I had looked for a campsite east of Indian Rock. See The Vinegar Hill Eclipse Expedition Part 1 Indian Rock

Back at the car I had a long rest before packing my backpack. It seemed very heavy with 3days food, 3 cans of beer and 1l of water but I made it to my campsite in about 1.5hours. On the road I had noticed that where some water had been seeping along in the morning it had dried in the afternoon. My creek had also dried, but the bedrock puddles still held enough water.

The next morning I had an early start and left camp before the sun reached it. I made the mistake and changed to my hiking clothes and when a cold wind strengthened I became much too cold. I finally dug out my down vest that I used to insulate my drinks before I reached the trail. I then followed the Princess Trail east into the sun. In the open terrain the trail was marked with large cairns but near Peak7452 I lost it in dense sage brush where it circles around to the south and decided to traverse the summit for the views.

[photo]P1070269.JPG[caption]Looking back from Peak7452 to Indian Rock[/photo]

[photo]P1070270.JPG[caption]Looking east to Vinegar Hill, the blue mountain in the far distance.[/photo]

Beyond there it was easier to follow in mostly open forest. At Desolation Creek I made the first longer rest in the shade and changed to shorts, but soon became a bit chilled in the cool forest. A bit further I came to the junction with the Sunrise Butte Trail...

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