Reply To: North Fork Adventure

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chris in redlands


I’ve looked at maps, potential routes, and scoped the terrain above Whitewater from near Walthier landing with binoculars for some time. Unless I’m mistaken, the biggest challenge in getting from Whitewater to 10k ft ridge will be within the first thousand feet after leaving the stream bed. I have been unable to identify anything down low there that’s “sure to go,” at least not in the zone I’m entertaining going up. Toward figuring it all out, I scouted out a couple of things last year, including a route up a canyon that puts you on 10k ft ridge, gaining the ridge right at the southernmost peak of the ridge. Here’s a track I recorded on that outing. Aside from the detour you can see up the “wrong” canyon near the beginning, the rest of the route was pretty chill and very direct:

fish creek to 10k ft ridge

I started at the fish creek trail, then left it to go direct to 10k ft ridge, then took the ridge back to the fish creek trail. The way i went up would be a pretty mellow descent for someone accustomed to x-c travel in the san bernardinos.

I also tested a theory that getting to where you leave the whitewater and start up toward 10k ft ridge would be easier from the mission creek preserve than it is from whitewater preserve. Having done both, I can say for sure that it’s easier from mission creek, where you basically follow an old road that used to go to walthier landing. That looks like this:

mission creek to walthier

I have sketched out a few ways that seem “likely” to go that would be irresponsible to share in a public forum, lest someone assume i’d done them and they went. ha! But it would be fun to discuss offline the way you went and where on that big south face might go.

I haven’t done much lately toward figuring this out…my thought is it’d be a three-day thing, going into the start of the climb at the north fork the first day from mission creek preserve, climbing about 3/4 of the way up (I don’t know the water situation) the second day, then up to 10k ft ridge and out to the fish creek TH the third. Could all be fantasy too, but it’s something I’ve thought about for about 15 years. would like to know if it’s doable or not.

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