Turtle Mountains, Iron Mountain
By: Gene Gail
On Sat Feb 13 @ 8 AM sixteen hikers met at Vidal Junction and caravaned back five miles west to a dirt road that follows the aqueduct and heads north. About four miles up we doubled back to the right and around another four miles or so on a good, bumpy dirt road to a roadhead quite near huge volcanic plugs in the valley. Harry Melts led 15 of us up to the Turtle high point in about 2 hours. We had a leisurely lunch and came down a very interesting ridge to the south. Two cars of eager young souls then went around on their own and climbed Carsen Peak. After they had supper at Vidal Junction, one car went all the way up to the Turtle roadhead looking for Andy Smatko's wallet. It wasn't there, but he later found it in his sleeping bag. Finally everyone got together at the west base of Iron Mtn and camped after going through a pile of dead smoke trees big enough for a Bingham Roast.
The Iron Mtn climb on Sunday was joined by Siina Melts and Russ Hubbard, to make 17 on the peak. It was a two-hour hike up a clean granite gully with intermittent patches of sand. An hour was spent on top discussing where else the we might have selected for a longer climb. An hour down the south ridge and were back to the cars at noon.
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