Mount Harrington, Kennedy Mountain


By: David L. Underwood

Thanks to a new policy in Kings canyon and Mineral King this year I was able to pick up our entry permit after noon the day before the hike. This allowed us to get an early start and beat the heat of the day. Going to the Canyon a day early gave me some time to bicycle and to see the area from a different perspective, it is a good way to see the kings and if you have the time it is a great way to tour the area. I can not recommend the food at Cedar grove however. the best that I can say for it is that is furnishes calories. Also if you plan to stay in the camp grounds be assured that the bears are vigilant to the point of wandering through the grounds all hours of the day and night.

Following the advice of Barbee Tidball I called all the participants and moved the starting time to 6:00 a.m. as she told me that her trip on Aug. 6-7 was very hot. Fortunately the heat had subsided by the 27th. but the early start helped. We started at a leisurely pace from Deer Cove and reached Frypan Meadow by 11:30 stopping frequently to drink and take in the view on the way up. The camping at Frypan is much better than at Wildman but as usual the first campsite you come to is not always the best. Continue on for about 200 yards and you will find a much better site. If you cross the small creek you will find two more nice secluded sites among the trees. There does seem to be a problem with Hornets in this area. I was stung at the camp and another climber was stung coming down from Mt. Harrington.

We set up camp and proceeded on to Kennedy Mtn. a total of 7200' for the day and about 14 miles. At the top of Kennedy Pass we met a party of Dutch hikers who were completing a hike of several days. They camped near us at Frypan and were quite hospitable which made for a nice social hour after dinner.

Sunday morning we got off to a late start but had no trouble reaching Mt. Harrington. we started up the south buttress due to some misinformation that I had and found that we had to traverse the west side of the peak to the north ridge where we made our final ascent to the summit. We were fortunate to have an excellent group of climbers in our party and experienced no trouble in gaining the summit.

Also participating were John Cheslick whose guidance is much appreciated, Linda James who has been hiking with Steve this summer and is developing into a good strong hiker, Lisa Boehmer one of our newest SPS members and a real tiger, and Duncan Livingston who was on his first SPS trip and is a fine climber who I hope to see on other trips· Lastly I would like to thank Steve for helping to make this a successful enjoyable climb.

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