THE DETAILS

Highwood Mountains

Sunday, May 8, 1994

This was my third try to hike to the top of Highwood Baldy.

Although the day was sunny and warm, I was feeling a little under the weather.

On the way up, saw the vertebrea, skull and antlers of a six point buck still intact. The bugs weren't quite done with it.

Some snow as I approached the summit and I spent a lot of time pole-holing my legs deep into the spring snow. Closer to the top, I had to hike and climb across lots of rock rubble, some a bit unstable.

Did reach the top this time. The view is great of the surrounding valleys. Because the sky was a bit hazy, couldn't see Great Falls. There's a radio building at the summit with about 20 antenneas of all shapes and sizes rising above its roof.

As I ate lunch, I watched two bald eagles circling high above the valleys and peaks. A perfect sight for my effort.

I followed the trail (at least how it's supposed to be on the map) on the way up, and intended to on the way down. Unfortunately, I didn't turn left at the right time and ended up descending through the forest toward the wrong drainage. I was confused for a while but once I got in the clearing, I could see the other drainage and traversed to it. No real fear, just some concern.

It took 2.25 hours to get up and 1.75 hours to get down. As the guidebook says, it is a strenuous hike.

Backpacking in Montana