I thought I would learn a little more about “The Volcano” aka “Don’t Do It Peak”, as named by Tim K6TW. He and Bryan N0BCB activated it back in 2013 and it was a tough climb. I wanted to see if it was possible to traverse at the 5800 foot contour from the gully a third of a mile over to the saddle between Kratka and the peak. The descent down the gully would then only be 900 vertical feet. The traverse would avoid descending another 300 feet down the gully. Yellow track shows Tim’s and Bryan’s route.
Started from the road at dawn, headed down the gully at 0555. It was fairly steep but straightforward and fairly easy. I did not have my full SOTA gear with me, only the HT, since I wasn’t intending an activation of CT-083.
Also very scenic
The view down, after descending several hundred feet in elevation
View back up
The GPS said this was around the 5800 foot level: a 20 foot smooth rock wall from one side of the gully to the other. I saw that the traverse was not possible: the sides of the gully were too steep. One would need to continue on Tim’s and Bryan’s route. If I were to attempt it, I would leave a rope here to make sure I could climb back up! Probably could do it without a rope, but…
View of The Volcano from near the rock wall. The vegetation in the gully up to this point had not been a problem at all; Google Earth shows it gets much thicker below this point. Also, I tried the HT here, could not access any repeaters (Catalina, Mt Wilson, San Dima WIN, PAPASYS), I guess not a surprise.
Sat and had a Clif Bar and water for breakfast, then headed back up. The weather was nice and cool and sunny.
Today I wore my old rock climbing helmet to provide some protection against potential rockfall
I had noted from the GPS that these smooth boulders marked the point of 150 meters elevation below the top of the gully
View back down the gully. The Volcano to the right
Near the top of the gully
View down into the San Gabriel Wilderness
It took about 50 minutes to get down the gully to the rock wall, and about an hour back up. The walking and scrambling was pretty easy.
Passed by Newcomb’s at 0830, they weren’t open till 0900 so continued down. Further down at the viewpoint of Waterman, Twin, and Baldy got out the HT and talked with Charles KM6CEM. He was able to relay to Jeff K6QCB that I was on the way home and wouldn’t be activating anything today. I could hear Jeff but he couldn’t copy me. I wanted to get home by 11 to meet some fellow retirees for lunch at Thai Top in Hermosa Beach…