Cone Peak-South Peak

July 8, 2006

The five of us started our hike about 9:15 a.m. from the Iron Mountain trail head at Tombstone Pass, Hwy. 20. The highly used trail was in very good condition and dry for the entire hike. We climbed north on the main trail up the switchbacks until we crossed the 4900 ft. (roughly) level at the S.E. base of Cone Peak. At that point we cut off trail, ascending laterally to the N.E., crossing Hackleman drainage at its point between Cone Peak and the ridge between Cone and South Peak. Using what seemed to be a faint trail or possible game trail we traveled along the ridge and ascended to the summit of south peak and had lunch. The views were good with a little haze. From this viewpoint we were able to see as far north as Mt. Hood and to the south as far as North and Middle Sister. The wildflowers were in bloom but not as many as the week before on my pre hike. Brian Hoyland pointed out and named many of the flowers including the Washington Lily, since then, my favorite flower.

After lunch we descended the same way following the ridge S.W. and ascended Cone Peak passing a nice volcanic cave shortly before summiting. Once again we had some spectacular views and a good idea what an eroded volcanic core looks like up close. With the temperature rising we took a shorter summit stay and descended the peak almost south and intersected the Iron Mt. trail returning to the trailhead at about 3.30 p.m. A great hike with members Bryan Hoyland, Mary and Ken Frazer, nonmember Mark Anthony and myself, Scot Hunt.


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