The second of two days in the Mendocino NF was a shorter version of the first because I
had to be home in the afternoon. There was plenty more driving but almost no hiking as
drive-ups seemed to be the order of the day. Heavily overcast skies cast a gray pall
over the area, making it look like it could rain at any time even though there had been
no rain in the forecast (not a drop fell, as it turned out). I'd spent the night parked
at Ivory Mill Saddle along Forest road M3, having slept quite well. In the morning I
continued north on the good dirt/gravel (and oddly, a portion even paved) road, heading
to Brushy Mountain, a P1K.
Summit Springs Hill
I sometimes check the GPS for other peaks when I'm in the area for a P1K, especially if
the area is new or I know the P1K isn't much of a challenge (as in this case). Summit
Springs Hill popped up as just off M3, three miles north of where I'd spent the night.
It has more than 500ft of prominence, but little else worthy of recommendation. I parked
off M3 about 2/3mi from the summit and took about 12 minutes to climb to the
summit. There is a good-sized clearing strewn with rocks and offering a few
views, north to ridgelines I couldn't identify and south to others I
couldn't remember. A 1964 benchmark is found among the summit rock litter.
Like most places throughout the National Forest, the area has been heavily logged in the
past. Some large stumps are reminders of how the old-growth forest had a very
different look and far larger trees. In other places there has been recent
timber thinning and related operations as reminders that
recreation is not the only activity in this Land of Many Uses. Barely 20min was consumed
in hiking to the top of Summit Springs Hill and back.
This P1K is located in the middle of the National Forest in Glenn County, just west of
the main divide separating the Eel and Sacramento River watersheds. M3 ends where it
meets Road FH7 which I followed west in conjunction with Road 312 to reach Brushy Mtn.
Despite the name, there is almost no brush at the highpoint, a long but easy drive-up
manageable by any vehicle. The summit has been spaciously bulldozed to
accommodate dozens of vehicles though it is probably rare that more than one or two are
here at the same time. There is a view to the south, but trees block those in
other directions. I located a benchmark
labeled VIEW, probably after the nearby overlook called Ocean View, though today there
were no such views available.
I headed back east on FH7 in search of the CC-listed summit of Long Pt. It isn't really
a summit as much as a small rise along a northward descending ridge. I thought the
highpoint of this ridge, just east of Alder Springs might have enough prominence to
qualify as a peak and went off in search of it as I passed by Alder Junction. I found the
Ranger Station at Alder Springs, the prison disguised as a "Conservation Camp" and a
network of roads good enough to allow even my car to find the summit. Little
more than a primitive camping spot sans views, I later learned it had only about 200ft of
prominence and thus didn't make the cut. Back on FH7 and the first
real pavement I'd seen in more than 24hrs, I easily found my way to Long Point
thanks to the handy road signs. A gravel road led out to the TH for
a trail leading 2,000ft down to Shepherd Creek. Long Point itself has barely 20ft of
prominence but pretty good views of the Shepherd Creek drainage surrounding it on three
sides (W - N - E). The concrete portions of
a foundation are all that are left of a lookout that once stood here. I found
one of the reference marks, but the benchmark
appears to be missing. While mildly scenic, this point really has no business on a peak
From Long Point, 48mi of driving were required to get me another 10 air miles
north for Goat Hill. An hour and a quarter later I had landed just a quarter mile east
of Goat Hill, the closest one can drive with 4 wheels. A motorcycle track
leads past a campfire ring into the forest, leading to the highpoint.
The summit is found in the woods without a view or any redeeming qualities,
really. The best that can be said is that at least I didn't have to bushwhack to reach
As peakbagging goes, I thought it was pretty much a dud of a day. Recognizing that they
can't all be great days, I could at least take solice that there were four less summits
I would have to be disappointed by in the future...