Sugarpine Hill P300
Rodgers Ridge P300

Oct 14, 2018
Rodgers Ridge
Story Photos / Slideshow Map GPXs: 1 2


It had been a long day at the Obelisk and I didn't get to bed until 1a that night. We had planned to do Kettle Dome, a long 22mi effort with non-trivial scrambling/climbing the next day, but I wasn't so keen on another all-day epic, fun as the first one had been. When I awoke a little after 7:30a the next morning, my campanions had already left to go home, evidently doing just fine on far less sleep than I managed. I decided to hit up a few easy summits before driving home myself, these located close to the Crown Valley TH.

Sugarpine Hill

This small bump is located off the main McKinley Grove Rd just southwest of the Crown Valley TH. An unsigned dirt Forest Road forks off from the pavement heading west. I drove only a short distance before encountering a locked gate. I parked off the road and made my way up the forested slopes to the summit found about 2/3mi to the west. Fire had swept through here sometime in the past few years, leaving many of the sugarpines in the area as charred snags. Buckthorn and other brush add a minor distraction, but overall the cross-country is not hard. The summit itself did not get burned badly, leaving the views lacking through the trees. The highest rock outcrop on the hill had a small cairn atop it. 45min was sufficient for the roundtrip effort.

Rodgers Ridge

Back on the paved road, I continued south to its end, then used a series of dirt roads to reach this unassuming point on the high ridgeline that forms the northern wall of Kings Canyon. Spanish Mtn is found at the highest point on the ridge some miles to the east. The roads were in good shape suitable for any vehicles. Most of the ones I saw today were owned by hunters, usually found driving slowly along the roads looking for deer. The hike from the end of the road is exceedingly short, less than five minutes to reach the forested summit. Views are better from the parking area, but they were marred by lots of haze in Kings Canyon this morning. I was done by 9a and decided to drive home, happy with the results of the trip, even without Kettle Dome...

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