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Now I Fly
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Now I Fly
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PostFri Nov 04, 2022 2:10 pm 
Thought we might get this in before yesterday's system came through. This trip is best when views of the Stuart range are clear. Cloudbase dropped before we reached the high country, but I think we still enjoyed the day. Great to travel in winter conditions again! Access the Point 5018 Ridge directly across the road from the Stafford Creek trailhead parking lot. It's surprisingly open from the start.
Access the ridge near the Stafford Creek trailhead.
Access the ridge near the Stafford Creek trailhead.
Bryan working through the first challenge.
Bryan working through the first challenge.
Wonderful traveling for much of this route, with a few small puzzles to work through.
Wonderful traveling for much of this route, with a few small puzzles to work through.
Doesn't take long for the views to open up
Following the ridge towards Point 5,018. After passing it we continued along the ridge to the left.
Following the ridge towards Point 5,018. After passing it we continued along the ridge to the left.
Point 5,018 and cloud-capped Miller Peak beyond.
Point 5,018 and cloud-capped Miller Peak beyond.
Following the path of least resistance.
Following the path of least resistance.
Once at the saddle cross over the ridge and traverse along its West side. Regain the ridge once beyond this rocky section.
Once at the saddle cross over the ridge and traverse along its West side. Regain the ridge once beyond this rocky section.
I've done this part a couple ways. Yesterday we picked up a game trail directly at the saddle and traversed the west side for a 1/4 mile before working back up to the ridge. That worked well. Once back on top of the ridge I think it's best to stay near its crest, traveling on either side as needed. In the past I've tried direct lines traversing below the ridge and in never seems to pay off.
Stay as close to the top of the ridge as is convenient, crossing over when needed.
Stay as close to the top of the ridge as is convenient, crossing over when needed.
Approaching the County Line.
Approaching the County Line.
Views of Freedom Peak and the "County Line" appear.
Views of Freedom Peak and the "County Line" appear.
The ridge eventually runs into the "County Line". Follow it to Freedom Peak traveling over a few different high spots along the way. Some of these may be a bit spicey for some folks, especially while snow covered.
Didn't stay in the snowshoes for long.
Didn't stay in the snowshoes for long.
Working the ups and downs along the County Line.
Working the ups and downs along the County Line.
The weather did move in.
The weather did move in.
Before long you'll your on Freedom's summit!
Freedom Summit!
Freedom Summit!
From here we followed the ridge down to the Freedom-Navaho Pass. If conditions permit it's fun to tag Navaho from there, but with the weather deteriorating we bailed back down to the Stafford Creek Trail. I'm not a fan of that trail especially in climbing boots, but it had an inch or two of fresh pow on it to soften the pound out to the truck. Hit a bit of nasty driving coming back over the pass. Once home I read it had been closed, so yay for being lucky. smile.gif 9 miles (+/-) 4,000 ft. (+/-) elevation gain 6:48 Elapsed time 5:04 moving time

zimmertr, jaysway, Sculpin, brewermd, Bramble_Scramble, Matt, awilsondc, LukeHelgeson, RichP
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Sculpin
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PostSun Nov 06, 2022 1:54 pm 
Now I Fly wrote:
Access the Point 5018 Ridge directly across the road from the Stafford Creek trailhead.
I'm interested in this route but am confused by your description. You took the ridge that runs parallel to the Stafford Creek trail to the east, right? That would be on the same side of the road as the trailhead. There is a ridge to the south that is "across the road" but it would be a loooooong way to get to Freedom Peak that way. confused.gif

Between every two pines is a doorway to the new world. - John Muir
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penquin
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PostSun Nov 06, 2022 7:45 pm 
Sculpn: We left the Stafford Creek trail a few hundred feet from the trailhead and took the ridge all the way to the top of Freedom Peak. Here is a screenshot of our route.

Now I Fly
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Now I Fly
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Now I Fly
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PostMon Nov 07, 2022 6:56 am 
You are right, I should have said across the road from the parking lot. Thanks for pointing that out. smile.gif

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