Friday, October 17, 2008

Thursday, 10/16/08 Pt. 12,644 "Little Buff"

Pt. 12,644 (aka “Little Buff”)
~10 miles
~3,400 vertical
Jeff Valliere, Gerry and Jennifer Roach, Sierra and Charlie

I sent out a few e-mails to see who might be able to get up to the high country on Thursday and got a quick response from Gerry inviting me to join he and Jennifer on a hike up “Little Buff” to close out her 10 mile/Mosquito 12ers. This sounded great to me and plans were set. We had all climbed the Buffalo Peaks previously, but somehow we had all managed to overlook Little Buff.

We started from the “trailhead” off of 431 (mile 8.5) and followed one of the many old logging roads generally South and slightly West aiming for the general vicinity of the saddle between East Buffalo and Little Buff. Since it is hunting season, the three of us, plus the dogs, were adorned in an assortment of Elmer Fudd orange hunting caps, vests and flagging ribbon. We really looked like a rag tag group.

Of course we made one of the classic climbing “mistakes” that Gerry and I were recently discussing, cutting up too soon and were faced with either an unpleasant side hilling adventure across talus and unconsolidated snow or continue on our path up the fall line. Fortunately (and as we fully expected), we had not cut up toooo soon and we found an easy and more efficient route to the anticlimactic summit of Little Buff.

We took a long break on top as the weather was quite nice aside from a bit of wind, but was otherwise pleasant. For kicks, we descended to the Little Buff, East Buff saddle and explored the Lynch Creek drainage a bit, then did some extra credit bushwhacking/log road following making a perfect figure 8 and adding considerably to our “Roach Points” for the day.

All in all a great trip to the Buffalo Peaks area with great company, topped off by a stop at Coney Island for some well earned junk food.


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