Sometimes hikes are physically tough, but it is easy mentally, because I know the trail and climbed it many times before this. McClellan Butte was now this morning. So this was a mental and physically rough climb.
Well not really lost, but I could not find where the trail continued after getting to a road. There was a sign of course saying 1/4 mile up the road, the trail continued. I walked what I thought was that far and no trail so I walked back again. Then started the quarter mile one more time. This time I found a trail which I spent a while climbing, but it was a false trail. So back to the road. At this point I was thinking maybe I will just go home. But I decided to continue down the road and found the right trail. It was at least a half a mile down that road. I just know it! Half hour lost.
Can a trail deceive you? Yes, it can start out easy and then get really difficult. That was today in a nutshell. I knew however that the trail was supposed to be a burner and kept asking myself when the hard stuff was going to start. It started about an hour and a half into the trip. Straight up!
Then as I got close to the top, the trail turned and began going downhill. I thought that maybe it would just go for a short bit and start back up, but it kept going. So eventually I decided to go back and see if I missed a turn somewhere. Back up the trail I went. I actually did this a couple times before a trail runner came by and said that the summit was in the downward direction. It eventually would turn and go straight up. Then back I went. He was right, eventually it went straight up to the top. Another half hour lost.
There is a scramble at the top of Mclellen Butte. It is about 100 feet with lots of hand and footholds, but and a big BUT, it is all exposed to at least a thousand foot drop. Since I am 74 and my balance not what it used to be I decided to live another day or two and forego that 100 feet. Alex Honhold could climb up it backwards blindfolded, but I am not Alex Honhold.
McClellan Butte is a “good” one as they say, and I didn’t spoil it with testosterone poisoning.