Trail: Yes, then off trail / cross country
Hike: Moderate ~ 11.7 miles round trip, some class 2 scrambling (includes Trail Peak)
Elevation gain: 2900′
Self Spot: Used inReach satellite
2-meter FM: Difficult, no 2-meter contacts
A first time activation for Peak 11,100.
For our second day in Horseshoe Meadow we had two peaks on the to-do list: Trail Peak and Peak 11,100.
Trail Peak is straight forward. Out the trail at the west end of the parking lot and then a quick turn south at the first trail intersection up towards Trail Pass. Once at the pass you can head west on the PCT but quickly need to jump off trail and start up the slope of Trail Peak. Trail Peak made for a nice break with another set of great views of the Sierra Mountains.
Once finished on Trail Peak, it was back down to Trail Pass and then east towards Mulkey Pass. Past Mulkey it was off trail, first gaining a bit of elevation and then contouring along the slope at about 10,600′ taking us to the saddle at the base of Peak 11,100. From there we headed up the loose scree/sand slope to the top. Peak 11,100 flattens out at the top and you need to continue heading east to the very edge to find the highpoint. Once on top, there are tremendous views of the Owens Valley with a dramatic escarpment that drops off over 7,000 feet. My 13 year old son, upon seeing it, decided it was, “best to stay away from the edge.”
I enjoy cross country, off trail hiking and this was a fun peak to bag. It was also the first time it was activated for Summits on the Air. While SOTA refers to it as Peak 11,100 (it is an officially unnamed peak) other common references are Peak 11,062 and a name derived from the register “Cottonwood Head.”
On the return, some in the group wanted to “re-contour” along the slope to make for a gentle return. You can see from out GPX that is what we did. If I were to do it again, I’d head straight up from the Peak 11,100 saddle back towards Horseshoe Meadow and then find a way to scramble down towards Last Chance Meadow. That is a more direct and aggressive route, but looks fun and easily doable.
Once back at Horseshoe Meadow, it was time to pack up and head home. Another great “quick” Sierra trip in the books.
Thank you to all the chasers who helped to make both of these peaks successful SOTA activations.
Link to first day and Cirque Peak here.
(Note on photos: I am not a photography hobbyist, I simply point and shoot when I see something I want to remember. I like trip reports with lots of photos to give you an idea of trail conditions, features, points of interest, terrain etc.)