Sunday, October 18, 2009

Mount P.O.W. / M.I.A.

Adventure beckoned. I needed to get outside and climb something new. It is getting near impossible to find a mountain to climb that is within striking distance. Most mountains on my "to do" list are deep into the backcountry and require extensive distance and time to summit. However, I studied my map last night and decided to climb Mount P.O.W. / M.I.A. and engage in reconnaissance of the surrounding area, including Goat Rock. I called Jesse and we settled on an 8:00 a.m. Sunday rendevouz. The route commenced at Mile 5 on Eklutna Lake Road.

Mount P.O.W./M.I.A. is a mountain that has been dedicated to all the soldiers that are or have been given the status of Prisoner of War or Missing in Action (POW/MIA). There is a POW/MIA flag placed atop of Mount POW/MIA and is replaced annually during Memorial weekend in May. This mountain was recently named by the efforts of John Morrissey, a Vietnam veteran from Patterson, New York. The mountain was formally named by USGS in 1999 and is currently the highest, largest natural monument in the world.

After summitting in just over an hour, Jesse and I decided to explore the terrain. We set out sights on Goat Rock. This is a steep, narly piece of rock residing next to West Twin Peak. We followed some goat trails and then broke away towards a gulley between Goat Rock and West Twin. Although we didn't summit, it was neat to recon the area.