Rouse Hill, Thomas Mountain, Santa Rosa Mountain, Rock Point, Butterfly Peak

19 June 1999

By: Joe Young


Leaders: Joe Young, Frank Goodykoontz

Notes from June 19 peakbagging: Roads to Rouse Hill and Thomas Mtn are excellent. Mileages are accurate except that the windmill is only 0.4 mile from the last intersection on the way to Rouse. Rouse Hill has a great nearly 360° view of HPS peaks.

The road to Santa Rosa is good to fair, the worst being the first mile and the last mile. Mileages are accurate. The summit of Santa Rosa lost its cabin; only a fireplace and chimney remain. Once a tree house and ladder existed; now remnants of the tree house and large nails remain where the steps of the ladder used to be. Frank G. said this was the first time he had been to the summit of Santa Rosa and not seen the cabin.

The hiking directions to Lookout are necessary ONLY IF permission to cross property is denied. The area is not posted. Therefore one can simply cross over/through the gate, walk up the road past the trailers on to the saddle, then scramble up the firebreak to the summit.

The group chose to dine together Saturday night at Arriba Mexican restaurant in Idyllwild, located across the street from the ranger station. Everyone was pleased with their meal. At the restaurant we called local Larry Shumway, HPS member, and were lucky to find him at home. We arranged to meet him the following morning, and he wanted to hike with us. Afterwards we all camped in two camp sites at Riverside County's Hurkey Creek Campground. For the record: There is a 2 vehicle per site limit, running water, restrooms with showers, extensive renovation (trees planted and drip irrigation system), and sites are $15 per day. The campground was a bit noisy this Saturday evening.

On Sunday morning we met up with Larry Shumway, who opened the gate so we could drive to his homeowners' Association's lodge. The Lodge could be a great location for an HPS party some time! (A successor to Spring Fling, maybe?) Larry hiked with us this day. There is a good trail leading from the lodge to the summit of Rock Pt. There is one spot where the route makes a sharp right turn in the main gully that is easy to miss. Otherwise you wind up thrashing in horrible brush. With Larry's assistance we spotted the turn and wound up following a beautiful trail all the way to the summit. Time was about 50 minutes.

We followed the standard route north from Rock Pt to meet the road to Butterfly at the beautiful "Christmas Tree". Hiking up the road we encountered the Prospector's Trail, and followed it over one saddle to a second saddle, then followed ducks up a ridge. The ducks disappeared and we thrashed our way to the more open east ridge to Butterfly. Our route was not better than the standard route to Butterfly. On return Frank G led us down the standard route and met the Prospector's Trail, then followed the road back to the "Christmas Tree" and then the equestrian trail back to the lodge.

As always, it is a privilege and honor to lead hikes with Frank Goodykoontz, the all-time preeminent HPS leader. Joe has about two dozen peaks to go before he leads the List once, and he knows how much work THAT has been; Frank has led the List FOUR times, and he hinted during the weekend that he is working on several more "Lists". Frank's service to the HPS is without equal.


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