July 8, 2007
A 7:00 a.m. departure from Eugene in order to beat the heat worked well. By 9:30 we were at Windigo Pass and heading north on the PCT with a few mosquitoes along for the ride, but under beautifully clear skies. One of the things I really like about this hike is the trail regularly popping out on the open ridge with good views of the surrounding area and of our destination — Cowhorn, although some felt it looked a bit daunting. We encountered some small snow patches on the trail’s north facing slopes as we neared Cowhorn. We had a lot of uncleared winter downfall along the PCT, unusual since the PCT is normally maintained early.
Within two hours we arrived at the base of Cowhorn and left the PCT to head up Cowhorn’s steep, exposed western ridge, through scree, over the volcanic dike, and on to the rock scramble to the summit, always the highlight of this trip. All enjoyed the spectacular views and enjoyed figuring out what all the humps and bumps on the far horizons were.
After lunch on the small summit we headed back, gingerly down scrambling through the rocks and sliding down the scree. The descent went quickly and we reached the cars about 3:00. A stop at Crescent Junction for refreshments completed a great day.
This was the third qualifying hike for soon to be member Elle Weaver.
Hikers were members: George Baitinger, George Jabanek, Janet Jacobsen, John Jacobsen (leader), Doug McCarty, Barb Revere, Rich Romm and Mel Zavodsky; and nonmembers: Denise Butler and Elle Weaver.