A Winter’s Trail on Kerby Peak (Selma, Oregon) 12-Mar-2018

Kerby Peak Selma Oregon

Kerby Peak (5,545 feet) overlooks Southern Oregon’s Illinois Valley, just to the east of major peaks in the Kalamiopsis Wilderness. A hike to its summit in summer is a local favorite (a tough hike to big views!) but there’s no tradition of it being hiked during “official” winter (between December 21 and March 20). We’d gotten up there in February of 2015, during a winter that featured essentially no snow. So, of course, getting to its top in winter – and when the peak was covered in snow – became one of my minor obsessions. We tried it in 2016 and turned back on the shoulder of Point 5112 after The LovedOne plunged into a post-hole. Then I (The LovedOne was having nothing more to do with this delusional behavior) tried again in March 2017, only to turn back when my snowshoes sank out of sight at around 4,800 feet. Snow came late this winter, so I could have repeated our 2015 snowless ascent this January. But, nooo, for 2018 I had to wait until it had snowed.  Well, my obsession was thwarted again (at the shoulder of Point 5112 no less [4.1 miles round-trip; 2,100 feet of elevation gain]) but the views were great! I have been warned, however, that my beer ration will cease if there is any attempt to continue with this nonsense in 2019 or beyond. Must find a new obsession…

2015

Kerby Peak Selma Oregon
The LovedOne on the summit of Kerby Peak, February 2015

2018

Kerby Peak Selma Oregon
Climbing snow to the ridge at Point 4463
Kerby Peak Selma Oregon
Fog in the Illinois Valley; the Kalmiopsis Wilderness on the horizon
Kerby Peak Selma Oregon
The Kalmiopsis from Point 4463
Kerby Peak Selma Oregon
Pearsoll Peak and Gold Basin Butte in the Kalmiopsis from Point 4463
Kerby Peak Selma Oregon
Grayback Mountain and a sun halo from the shoulder of Point 5112
Kerby Peak Selma Oregon
Lichen as dendrites
Kerby Peak Selma Oregon
And so endeth this particular obsession…

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