Highpointing

 

On the last weekend of September, 2001, JO and BC climbed Mount Washington in NH via the Tuckerman’s Ravine Trail, and at 6,288 feet, it was by far the highest either of us had ever climbed.  We were both exhausted, but we both felt it was quite an accomplishment.  Throughout the 2001-2002 winter, JO and BC began researching the highest points in the other states, and discovered that there was an organization with thousands of members devoted to “Highpointing”, which is to stand on the highest natural point in each state (or province).  It was then that JO and BC decided that highpointing was an attainable goal for them, and it was a good excuse to see the whole country and to take long road trips.  Highpointing is not an easy task for the following reasons:

1) It requires a lot of time to plan each trip, travel to each state, and then walk or hike to each highpoint.

2) It requires a lot of money to buy supplies and travel to each destination. This will prove to be the real limiting factor.

3) It requires a lot of training to get to some of the higher summits. We’re not worried about this so much, we figure that we'll work our way up to the more difficult climbs, and we'll train in advance for the really strenuous ones.

4) For some of the hikes, it's not safe to travel without a climbing partner. Luckily, this is already taken care of since we are going for these climbs together.

BC and JO live in the north suburbs of Boston, MA.  We are both in our mid-20’s and in less than ideal shape physically, and have minimal climbing experience.  Here are some stats on highpointing:

So far, 131 people have completed all 50 US highpoints. 242 people completed 48 of the highpoints. Denali (Mt. McKinley) in Alaska is the highest and most difficult highpoint at 20320 ft. Six hikes require rock climbing, glacier traversing or other mountaineering skills. 21 hikes are less than a half mile walk car to car. Six hikes require more than one day of hiking (over 16 miles roundtrip from car). 27 hikes have vertical gains of more than 1000 ft. 19 hikes are over 6 miles roundtrip. 12 hikes have summits that are over 10000 ft.

As the summer was getting underway, and the list of completed highpoints was growing, BC began doing research into the highpoints of the Canadian provinces and found that this was only completed for the first time in 1998 by Jack Bennett, and this was chronicled in his book, “Not Won in a Day”, which we both quickly read, and also decided that it might be fun to do some of the Canadian highpoints as well, though it has not been decided whether we will do all 13 of them.

Our current totals for highpoints completed are: 41 states (42 for JO), 1 province, and the District of Columbia.  14 of those states came on a week long trip that we embarked on in the summer of '02 throughout the southeastern U.S. (putting over 5,000 miles on JO’s car), and another 11 came on a 9,000 mile road trip we took in Summer 2003 to the midwest, southwest and prairie states, although we had to bail out of a few because of weather and/or car trouble. JO climbed Mount Whitney (CA) and Boundary Peak (NV) on his own in the fall of 2003, while in CA for work. That put JO ahead of BC by 3 states, but that lead was trimmed back to 1 in the summer of 2004, when JO and BC once again hit the road and hit up the southwest, gaining 7 more highpoints.

 

 

State Highpoints

 

Click on the highpoint names below to see a report on the highpointing trips we have made thus far.  We will also put up maps of our journey and pictures taken along the way at some point.

 

 

Abbr

Date

State

Location

Altitude

Lat/Long

Topo quad

AK

 

Alaska

Mount McKinley

20,320

63° 4'N,
151° 0’W

AK Mt. McKinley A-3 1:50,000

CA

 

California

Mount Whitney

14,494

36° 35'N,
118° 17'W

CA Mt. Whitney 1:25,000

CO

 8/10/04

Colorado

Mount Elbert

14,433

39° 07'N,
106° 27'W

CO Mt. Elbert 1:25,000

WA

 

Washington

Mount Rainier

14,410

46° 51'N,
121° 46'W

WA Mt. Rainier West 1:25,000

WY

 

Wyoming

Gannett Peak

13,804

43° 11'N,
109° 39'W

WY Gannett Peak 1:25,000

HI

 

Hawaii

Mauna Kea

13,796

19° 49'N,
155° 28'W

HI Mauna Kea 1:25,000

UT

 

Utah

Kings Peak

13,528

40° 47'N,
110° 22'W

UT Kings Peak 1:25,000

NM

8/2/04

New Mexico

Wheeler Peak

13,161

36° 33' N,
105° 25'W

NM Wheeler Peak 1:25,000

NV

 8/7/04

Nevada

Boundary Peak

13,143

37° 51'N,
118° 21'W

NV Boundary Peak 1:25,000

MT

 

Montana

Granite Peak

12,799

45° 10'N,
109° 48'W

MT Granite Peak 1:25,000

ID

 

Idaho

Borah Peak

12,662

44° 08'N,
113° 47'W

ID Borah Peak 1:25,000

AZ

 8/4/04

Arizona

Humphreys Peak

12,633

35° 20'N,
111° 41'W

AZ Humphreys Peak 1:25,000

OR

 

Oregon

Mount Hood

11,239

45° 22'N,
121° 42'W

OR Mt. Hood South 1:25,000

TX

5/22/03 

Texas

Guadalupe Peak

8,749

31° 53'N,
104° 52'W

TX Guadalupe Peak 1:25,000

SD

 5/19/03

South Dakota

Harney Peak

7,242

43° 52'N,
103° 32'W

SD Custer 1:25,000

NC

7/3/02

North Carolina

Mount Mitchell

6,684

35° 46'N,
82° 16'W

NC Mt. Mitchell 1:25,000

TN

7/4/02

Tennessee

Clingman’s Dome

6,643

35° 33'N,
83° 30'W

TN Clingmans Dome 1:25,000

NH

9/15/01

New Hampshire

Mount Washington

6,288

44° 16'N,
71° 18'W

NH Mt. Washington 1:25,000

VA

7/5/02

Virginia

Mount Rogers

5,729

36° 39'N,
81° 33'W

VA Whitetop Mountain 1:25,000

NE

5/20/03 

Nebraska

Panorama Point

5,424

41° 1'N,
104° 2'W

NE Pine Bluffs SE 1:25,000

NY

6/22/02

New York

Mount Marcy

5,344

44° 07'N,
73° 55'W

NY Mt. Marcy 1:25,000

ME

8/17/02

Maine

Mount Katahdin

5,267

45° 54'N,
68° 55'W

ME Mt. Katahdin 1:25,000

OK

5/21/03 

Oklahoma

Black Mesa

4,973

36° 56'N,
103° 0'W

OK Kenton 1:25,000

WV

8/10/02

West Virginia

Spruce Knob

4,863

38° 42'N,
79° 32'W

WV Spruce Knob 1:25,000

GA

7/2/02

Georgia

Brasstown Bald

4,784

34° 52'N,
83° 49'W

GA Jacks Gap 1:25,000

VT

6/1/02

Vermont

Mount Mansfield

4,393

44° 33'N,
72° 49'W

VT Mt. Mansfield 1:24,000

KY

7/4/02

Kentucky

Black Mountain

4,139

36° 55'N,
82° 54'W

KY Benham 1:25,000

KS

8/1/04

Kansas

Mount Sunflower

4,039

39° 01'N,
102° 02'W

KS Mt. Sunflower 1:25,000

SC

7/4/02

South Carolina

Sassafras Mountain

3,560

35° 04'N,
82° 47'W

SC,NC Estatoe Gap 1:25,000

ND

 5/19/03

North Dakota

White Butte

3,506

46° 23'N,
103° 18'W

ND Amidon 1:24,000

MA

5/4/02

Massachusetts

Mount Greylock

3,491

42° 38'N,
73° 10'W

MA North Adams 1:25,000

MD

8/10/02

Maryland

Backbone Mountain

3,360

39° 14'N,
79° 29'W

MD Davis 1:25,000

PA

8/10/02

Pennsylvania

Mount Davis

3,213

39° 47'N,
79° 11'W

PA Markleton 1:25,000

AR

6/30/02

Arkansas

Magazine Mountain

2,753

35° 10'N,
93° 39'W

AR Blue Mountain 1:25,000

AL

7/1/02

Alabama

Cheaha Mountain

2,407

33° 29'N,
85° 49'W

AL Cheaha Mountain 1:25,000

CT

4/27/02

Connecticut

Mount Frissell (South Slope)

2,380

42° 03'N,
73° 29'W

MA Bish Bash Falls 1:25,000

MN

5/17/03 

Minnesota

Eagle Mountain

2,301

47° 54'N,
90° 34'W

MN Eagle Mountain 1:25,000

MI

 5/16/03

Michigan

Mount Arvon

1,979

46° 45'N,
89° 09'W

MI Skanee South 1:25,000

WI

 5/17/03

Wisconsin

Timms Hill

1,951

45° 27'N,
90° 12'W

WI Timms Hill 1:25,000

NJ

7/6/02

New Jersey

High Point

1,803

41° 19'N,
74° 38'W

NJ Port Jervis South 1:25,000

MO

7/1/02

Missouri

Taum Sauk Mountain

1,772

37° 34'N,
90° 44'W

MO Ironton 1:25,000

IA

5/18/03 

Iowa

Hawkeye Point

1,670

43° 27'N,
95° 42'W

IA Sibley East 1:25,000

OH

8/12/04 

Ohio

Campbell Hill

1,550

40° 21'N,
83° 44'W

OH Zanesfield 1:25,000

IN

8/12/04 

Indiana

Hoosier Hill

1,257

40° 00'N,
84° 51'W

IN Spartanburg 1:25,000

IL

5/18/03 

Illinois

Charles Mound

1,235

42° 30'N,
90° 14'W

IL Shullsburg 1:25,000  

RI

5/26/02

Rhode Island

Jerimoth Hill

812

41° 51'N,
71° 47'W

RI East Killingly 1:25,000

MS

7/1/02

Mississippi

Woodall Mountain

806

34° 46'N,
88° 15'W

MS Iuka 1:25,000

LA

6/30/02

Louisiana

Driskill Mountain

535

32° 25'N,
92° 54'W

LA Bryceland 1:25,000

DE

7/6/02

Delaware

Ebright Azimuth

448

39° 50'N,
75° 31'W

DE Wilmington North 1:25,000

DC

8/10/02

District of Columbia

Fort Reno Park

429

38° 57’N,

77° 5’W

DC Washington West 1:25,000

FL

6/29/02

Florida

Britton Hill

345

30° 59'N,
86° 17'W

FL Paxton 1:25,000

 

Provincial Highpoints

 

Abbr

Date

Province

Location

Altitude

Lat/Long

Topo quad

YT

 

Yukon Territory

Mount Logan

19,551

60° 34’N

140° 23’W

115 C 09

BC

 

British Columbia

Mount Fairweather

15,300

58° 54’N

137° 31’W

114 I 13

AL

 

Alberta

Mount Columbia

12,294

52° 9’N

117° 27’W

083 C 03

NWT

 

Northwest Territories

Mount Nirvana

9,098

61° 52’N

127° 42’W

095 E 13

NU

 

Nunavut

Barbeau Peak

8,583

84° 54’N

75° 1’W

340 D 15

QB

 

Quebec

Mont D’Iberville

5,322

58° 43’N

63° 43’W

014 L 13

NF

 

Newfoundland

Mount Caubvick

5,322

58° 43’N

63° 43’W

014 L 13

SK

 

Saskatchewan

Cypress Hills

4,816

49° 33’N

109° 59’W

072 F 12

MT

 

Manitoba

Baldy Mountain

2,729

51° 28’N

100° 43’W

062 N 07

NB

 8/16/02

New Brunswick

Mount Carleton

2,690

47° 23’N

66° 53’W

021 O 07

ON

 

Ontario

Ishpatina Ridge

2,275

47° 19’N

80° 19’W

041 P 07

NS

 

Nova Scotia

White Hill

1,747

46° 42’N

60° 36’W

011 K 10

PEI

 

Prince Edward Island

Springton

466

46° 20’N

63° 25’W

011 L 06

 

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