Peak 6352 (W6 SS-407) 10 Oct 2018

Peak 6352 is in the Southern Sierra, off Chimney Peak Road. It seems to also have the informal name of “Perpendicular Peak”, probably because its lower neighbor is “Parallel Benchmark”.  It had previously been activated by Dan NA6MG. The hike starts at the Lamont Peak trail head. It took three hours to drive there, plus a half hour break in Mojave for topping up the gas tank and a breakfast at McDonalds.

Left off Hwy 14 to Hwy 178 west, then north on Chimney Peak Road after Walker Pass. Chimney Peak Road is a well graded dirt and gravel road.

The trail head, looking south. The hike to Peak 6352 to the right (west). Hike to Lamont Peak to the left (east)


The next day I hiked a little up towards Lamont and took this picture of Peak 6352.



The hike is just over a mile with about 900 feet of elevation gain. It took me about an hour and a quarter. Up through open chaparral, Coulter Pine and Pinyon Pine. Very dry with numerous dead trees. Starting up from the saddle where I parked, then at the top of the hump, left and down and up over to the main ridge as the photo shows:



Pinyon Pines have clusters of nuts which you can eat as a snack



The big wall on a subsidiary spur becomes visible



I kept this rocky outcrop to my right, then up to another outcrop on the left (not shown), which I again kept on my right.



Then up to the top



Good band conditions for ham radio



Date:10/Oct/2018 Summit:W6/SS-407 (6352) Call Used:N6JZT Points: 6 Bonus: 0   

Time Call Band Mode Notes
17:00z NE4TN 14MHz CW
17:01z N4EX 14MHz CW
17:01z AG6V 14MHz CW
17:02z W0MNA 14MHz CW
17:03z VE2JCW 14MHz CW
17:03z W0ERI 14MHz CW
17:04z K5DEZ 14MHz CW
17:05z VE6UX 14MHz CW
17:06z NS7P 14MHz CW
17:07z K8TE 14MHz CW
17:10z K0EAP 14MHz CW
17:11z N2ESE 14MHz CW
17:12z K3TCU 14MHz CW
17:13z KG3W 14MHz CW
17:14z K4MF 14MHz CW
17:15z W2SE 14MHz CW
17:22z K7GT 10MHz CW
17:24z NS7P 10MHz CW
17:26z KX0R 10MHz CW
17:28z NU7A 10MHz CW
17:34z W7RV 7MHz CW
17:37z KB7HH 7MHz CW
17:41z K6EL 7MHz CW


The summit consists of large slabs and boulders and is very scenic



In the distance, from left to right: Cannell Peak, Taylor Dome, Church Dome. The first two were activated two years ago by Dan NA6MG and me



North ridge of Lamont Peak



To make sure of my route down, I had noted on the way up, that you pretty much head towards Lamont Peak to avoid any problems with mistakenly going down a wrong spur or ridge



Halfway down, someone had dropped their stash of medical cannabis (marijuana)! The worn label looked like it was several years old.



Nearly down, crossing back over to the left to the hump above the parking spot.DSCN0885


Had some lunch, then decided to drive along Chimney Peak Road towards the Kennedy Meadows Road and do some sightseeing

Lamont Benchmark, an unactivated SOTA peak



The Pacific Crest Trail. You could take this towards Lamont Benchmark to within 600 feet of the summit. Then cross country if you wanted to get to the top



I checked out the nice Chimney Creek Camp Ground (36 sites among the trees), 0.2 miles from where the PCT crosses the road. I decided not to camp there, but camp back at the Lamont Peak trail head, since the latter is much more open and practical for astronomy.

I continued north and reached the Kennedy Meadows road, then turned back on the “Chimney Peak Scenic Byway”. This day I only saw one other vehicle on this road. A quiet autumn Wednesday I guess!DSCN0887

After dark, set up the telescope and observed the M31 Andromeda Galaxy, the double open cluster in Perseus (always a pretty sight), and the M57 Ring Nebula in Lyra. I spent awhile trying to spot the M33 galaxy in Triangulum, but I guess it was just too dim for me and could not locate it. I noted I could see down to at least 5th magnitude by eye; I could see 61 Cygni, a 5th magnitude binary star. I noted that there was some luminosity in the southern sky, presumably from Los Angeles 100 miles away. But it did not affect my seeing to the north or east or overhead.

I slept pretty well in the car, getting up at 0420 to use the telescope again. I observed the M41 open cluster in Canis Major, and the M42 and M43 nebulae in Orion. I easily mde out the four stars of “The Trapezium” embedded in M42. I could see much more nebulosity than I can see at my home in the city.

It was colder now (45F/6C) in the early morning so I had a pint (0.5 litre) of hot chocolate to warm up! I had originally planned to spend another day in the mountains, but I did not feel like spending another night in the car, so I headed for home around 0800!




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