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September 29th, 2009 – Scalplock Lookout

May 31, 2010

With 80 miles over the last four days, I decide I finally do need some sort of actual day off.  This of course involves hiking, but nothing too bad – just 4 miles and 3000 feet of elevation gain to an unmanned lookout in the souther portion of the park.

The hike is fairly straightforward:  Start moving forward, and just turn around somewhat at switchbacks.  There’s a lot of ’em.  I actually see people on this trail, quickly passing a couple of guys packing a bunch of stuff up to the lookout to do some repairs. 

Reaching the top, I’m very pleased with the view, as it offers me several new perspectives on some of the neater peaks in the southern portion of the park, plus I’m able to see Stanton Glacier clinging to the north face of Great Northern Mountain (outside the park).

First, the view north:

Left to right, the prominent peaks are Mount Jackson (with Harrison Glacier and Blackfoot Mountain (Pumpelly Glacier); Mt. Stimson and Pt. Pinchot peaking over Eaglehead Mountain; the ridges of the Cloudcroft Peaks; and of course the unmistakable Mt. St. Nicholas.

To the south is Great Northern Mountain, with Stanton Glacier:

To the South are many, many peaks of the northern part of the Bob; with the mid-morning haze and the sun, it’s hard to identify any definitively:

It’s a great vista all around, and a nice short hike; I wish I could say that the sheer logistics and 5.8 climbing required for Mt. St. Nicholas dissuade me from ever wanting to climb it, but they don’t!

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