East Ord Mountain
16-Oct-99 (List Finish)
By: John Cheslick
The morning of my list-finishing hike started with a long wake up call at 2:30 am. The 7.1 Hector Mine earthquake. This scared off a few participants but I knew as long as the roads were open I was going.
Charlie and I met the group at the end of Camp Rock Road at 10 am. Why start earlier when you only have 3 hours of hiking and a long evening of celebrating ahead of you. We had a total of 28 people on this hike, including two people (Vicki Kompaniez and Kurt Levens) on their first DPS trip.
We started the hike from the 2WD trailhead at about 11:30. We went up the alternate route, which is a class 2 scramble along the ridge to the summit. It was perfect day for this hike, not too hot and not too cool. We summitted 2 1/4 hours later, a bit slower than the time listed in the guidebook but not bad for such a large group.
The celebration on the summit involved the usual champagne toast, plenty of pictures and goodies to share on the summit. It must have been warmer and hotter than I thought since the group had no trouble at all drinking 10 bottles of champagne. Patty Kline surprised me by welcomed me to "The Order of the Bighorn's Ass." (You have to see the pin to appreciate the comment.)
After the pictures, champagne and a little lunch the group descended via the standard route to the cars. Then it was time for happy hour and our potluck.
It was almost anti-climatic in finishing the list. I only seriously started working on the list about four years ago. Originally, I didn't want to try to finish the list since I thought it involved more driving than actual climbing. Once I did a couple of peaks, I was hooked on the beauty of the desert and the sense of adventure in exploring new parts of the Southwest. Plus, I enjoyed the great potlucks and pancake breakfasts. I also confirmed that the list involves more driving than hiking time especially driving to Big Picacho or Ruby Dome but it was well worth the time and the energy.
I would like to thank all the folks who were on my list finishing hike. Especially Donna for putting up with my "List Fever" and Charlie Knapke for co-leading this hike and for the many other DPS trips we led together. I would also like to thank all the people that made this trip and all the other DPS and private trips so enjoyable and fun. See you in the mountains. John
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