August 26, 2000
Our group of four quickly hiked the Mt. Thielsen trail to
the junction with the PCNST where we stopped briefly for a water and snack
break. While we were there, we
chatted briefly with John Miller, the Lane County Search & Rescue
coordinator, who was descending with his climbing partner from an early morning
ascent of the jagged summit pinnacle. Both
of our climbing parties were disturbed by the shocking amount of litter that has
been left behind by other careless hikers.
Along the trail we saw numerous empty beer cans, lots of used toilet
paper, a used diaper, and several plastic water bottles.
To our astonishment, we also encountered two young men riding mountain
bikes far above the wilderness boundary and a young couple pushing a baby in a
jogging stroller near timberline. We
all seemed to agree that the Thielsen Wilderness has been abused by this kind of
use and that it truly detracted from our wilderness experience.
The climb from timberline to the base of the summit pinnacle went quickly
on the now well-used and well-defined climbers’ trail.
A rope was fixed for the final 80 feet of nearly vertical rock, and all
four of our group were soon basking in the sun and admiring the view from our
tiny perch on the summit. The view
was especially fine for Michael Landes, who was enjoying his tenth High Cascades
peak with the Obsidians. After some
photographs and a congratulations to Michael, we descended by down climbing and
reversing our route back to the car. Thanks
to Sue Sullivan for car pooling our four climbers in the “Sue Bus”.
Congratulations again to Michael for his perseverance and determination
in attaining his Ten Peak goal! Climbers
were guests Robert Hermann and Obsidians Michael Landes, Sue Sullivan and
leader, Brian Hoyland.