Justin

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  • in reply to: When the front door is closed, try the back door #4968
    Justin
    Participant

    Hi Brian, thank you for the insightful post. I would be very interested in hearing more details about the Hell For Sure refined approach, how you connected with the folks at Whitewater Preserve, and the general areas you hiked.

    I am relatively new to the SGWA, but was able to get in a few multi-day trips prior to the fires last fall. I drew a deer tag for D14 and was planning to do a true backpack style hunt in the Northfork Meadows area. When I would scout, I would usually set up camp at Mineshaft, then we heading out for the day I would cut straight up to Ten Thousand Foot Ridge, traverse the ridge to what Hikin’ Jim refers to as Hell For Sure Peak in one of his blogs (not sure if that’s an official peak name or his name for it, but it is essentially the last high point on the ridge), then I would cut back down to the Northfork Whitewater. Cutting down to the river was sketchy at times, but I’d just take it one step at a time and be extra safe. Interesting side note, I believe I stumbled across the wreckage of the private jet that was carrying Frank Sinatra’s mother. I started noticing small pieces of metal just a few hundred yards below Hell For Sure Peak, then came across what I believe to be a wing about 1/3 of the way down the canyon.

    So, your post really interests me because part of the reason I like going to this area is due to how remote and rugged it is. I never saw a single soul (just a lot of deer). If I could explore the Hell For Canyon area, then I feel like I would have somewhat of a good gauge of what lies all the way from San Gorgonio Peak, down to Mineshaft/Lake Peak/10K ft ridge, down to Northfork Meadows, down to the lower areas of Hell For Sure Canyon, etc.

    I would prefer to go with someone for safety reasons, especially when cutting down from 10K foot ridge, but don’t have anyone that’s been willing to do that. I do have a sat communicator with SOS, a med bag, etc.

    One of my biggest questions is even though you’re entering through the preserve, if you cut into the SGWA, are you technically allowed to be there?

     

    Justin
    Participant

    Hi Jim,

    When I initially started researching the SGWA, I believe I came across one of your blog posts years ago that was very helpful.

    http://hikinjim.blogspot.com/2013/10/six-backpacking-loops-in-san-gorgonio.html?m=1

     

    Justin
    Participant

    Thanks Mike, Jim, and Ranger Lon! I did already purchase a hunting license, and did enter the drawing for a D14 tag, which is a Premium Zone for the 2020 season and requires a drawing instead of an automatic issue. I should know in about a month whether I’ll get to hunt D14 this fall (rifle).

    Jim, I have similar sentiments regarding handguns on the trails (not worried about people, mainly the possibility of four-legged creatures since I’m typically alone and quiet, because I am scouting and WANT to see wildlife, but mainly deer). It sounds like we’d never have anywhere near the level of risk here as I would if I was alone in northwest Montana, which I’d definitely want to have open carry for quick access. But I did some more research and found a great combination chest rig from a company called Hill People Gear. It’s a combination of a chest MOLLE pouch which will fully conceal a firearm (no gasping hikers) and hold my glass (binoculars), all while still being compact and not too big.

    Thank you Lon for all the great advice. I did a lot of research, googling and searching YouTube before my Memorial Day trip. I also looked at a topo map and identified the areas where I thought there would be deer. Low and behold, Northfork Meadows is where I saw all the deer. I don’t think it’s a secret to any hunter, so it’s not as those I’m giving away a secret spot. It takes a certain type of person that is willing to hike 8-9 miles in to get there, then hike 8-9 miles back with a lot more weight on you than what you started with. That in and of itself is a barrier to entry. I’ll definitely be stopping by Mill Creek- any leads on when you’ll be reopening?

    Justin
    Participant

    I will add that I did a “hunting” search on the forum this evening and was disappointed to see numerous comments related to hunters leaving behind messy campsites, not treating the area appropriately, etc. My hope would be that a few bad hunters are ruining it for the good ones. A true sportsman would not exhibit these behaviors.

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