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Sat, Sep 26 2009 - Mt Richmond (View Original Event Details)

Coordinator(s): Tom Kotynski
Participants:Tom Kotynski

Write Up:
Mount Richmond - September 26, 2009 Coordinator: Tom Kotynski Gale force winds added an element of challenge to a climb of Mount Richmond (elevation: 8,177 feet) in the Rocky Mountain Front/Bob Marshall Wilderness. Eight of us began just west of Swift Reservoir on the North Fork of Birch Creek. Richmond is a handsome limestone peak that towers above Swift Reservoir west of Dupuyer. The views on top were stupendous, enhanced by a bright, clear blue sky, although the predicted winds started to pick up. On our descent, we worked our way down through several large cliff bands at the top, descending to broad ridgelines where the wind really began to howl. At first we laughed about being blown about. Then the winds became sustained and the laughing was over. I was thrown to the ground at one point and scratched my glasses and bruised my arms and knee on the sharp limestone rock. Jerry Moore was knocked down trying to help me up and then was knocked over and flat by the wind. He hit his head, but was not seriously hurt. The rest of us were thrown into rocks as we tried to move down the ridge. We could barely move at times and huddled together at points hoping the wind would die down. Paul Cogswell's sunglasses flew off his face. A wind gust lifted Mark Hertenstein off his feet. Finally, we had no choice but to move off the ridge to the east side that wasn't getting as badly buffeted. David Schuler, who retired from a career at sea with the Coast Guard and knows winds when he sees them, estimated the winds at "60 knots," which he translated as 90 miles an hour. I've been in high winds on the Front before, but I think these were the highest I had ever encountered. We finally got into the bottoms and enjoyed narrow, scenic small canyons dappled with fall colors before reaching the North Fork. We all enjoyed the off-trail and unexpected nature of our exploratory, but it will be the wind that we'll remember the most.



Have some photos from this event that you'd like to share in our photo album? Please forward them to Tim Anderson at twamontana@gmail.com. Please note that we prefer to receive the photos in approximately 640x480 or 750x500 pixels - do NOT send original high-res photos. If you have a LOT of photos, please submit up to twenty of your favorites (only) for a day event, or up to forty of your favourites for a multi-day event. Thank you.




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