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Cleghorn Mountain, Sugarpine Mountain, Monument Peak #2, Cajon Mountain

8 March 1970

By: John Backus

Leader: Duane McRuer
Asst.: John Backus

We now have a new class of mountain to describe those on the HPS list, the "push-up." A "push-up" is a "drive-up" with so much snow on the road as to require a great deal of pushing of cars (by the passengers, of course) to get them up the mountain. Some forty-two people gathered at the non-existent town of Summit for an advertised climb of Cleghorn and drive-up of the other three. The roads had been scouted two weeks before, and were in good shape; however, considerable snow had fallen in the meantime, and the north slopes of the mountains looked forbiddingly white. The Cleghorn road from Cedar Springs is on the south slope of the ridge, so everyone (loaded into nine cars) made it up to Cleghorn Saddle, from which the peak is a 45 minute, 700 foot gain scramble up a brush-covered ridge and then along a fire road.

After conquering this mighty 5,333' peak, we drove up the Powell Canyon road (not shown on the 1965 San Bernardino National Forest map) to road 2N49 along the next ridge to the south. Being mostly on the north side, this road had up to a foot or more of snow on it in places, and here is where the pushing began; to get to the parking area below Sugarpine Mtn. required two hours instead of what should have been 15 minutes. The 150 feet of gain to the summit of Sugarpine was negotiated without incident; however, with a higher summit visible a half mile to the east, considerable skepticism was expressed concerning the bump we were standing on. These doubts were quelled by the leader's firm statement that if the opinion of the party was that Sugarpine was not much of a mountain, wait until they saw Monument. So, after a quick lunch, the party (with cars) mushed on toward Monument, hoping that snow conditions would become better as they went farther south. They did not; they got worse, and finally the cars were abandoned and the last mile (down!) to Monument done on foot. Then back to the cars, where a car-turning-around operation was engineered; then the drive back down to the road out to Cajon Mtn. was negotiated. Two cars tried the drive out to the Lookout tower, and finally made it; the rest of the party felt that they had done enough pushing for the day and walked to the peak.

This was Randy Bernard's 100th, so champagne was served. (Unfortunately, by the time I arrived, it was all gone; I don't think the rule about not preceding the leader is taken seriously enough.) Finally, at 5:00 p.m., the intrepid group emerged from the mountains, having conquered a hike-up, a push-up, a push-along-and-hike-down, and a walk-up, for a total of four so-called peaks for the day.

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