Saturday, December 19, 2009

Billy Hill and Glascock Mountain Hike

View of Billy Hill from above

On a clear, crisp early winter day (December 18), Dick Fraschetti, Mark Manoff and I drove to Capay Valley, located northwest of Woodland, for a terrific and very challenging 6 mile RT hike.

Our first destination, Billy Hill (1800'), is located about 3rd the way up to Glascock Mountain (2500'), our ultimate destination. The trail head (800') starts at Hwy 16 along Bear Creek Valley. The hike to Glascock Mt. is 4.3 miles but the trail peters out about a mile from the summit so we ended our hike at this point along spectacular Cortina Ridge.

Click on pic to enlarge view

The view of Cortina Ridge and Glascock Mt, the peak on the right, from the top of Billy Hill

Glascock Mt, elev. 2500', was our goal

But the trail along Cortina Ridge became over-grown and disappeared so we ended our hike here. We ate our lunch on a cliff-edge with awesome views of Bear/Cache CreekValleys and the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Mark and Dick and the big oak

The lower elevation of the trail passes through open grassland and oak-woodland forest and the trail is very steep for 1000' to the top of Billy Hill

The last grunt up to Billy Hill . . . steeper than it looks

Birds-eye view of Bear Creek Valley and Hwy 16 from the summit of Billy Hill - looking southwest. The trail-head starts at a wide-spot off Hwy 16. You climb over a barbwire fence to get to the trail which then switch-backs up a very steep hill to the summit of Billy Hill and ultimately leading to Cortina Ridge and Glascock Mt.

Dick and me at the top of Billy Hill. Cortina Ridge behind us.

View looking north - Bear Creek Valley and Hwy 16

The trail between Billy Hill and Cortina Ridge follows a ridge over a series of moderate humps

Dick and Mark weaving through the low growing chapperal

The view of the trail along the ridge leading up to Cortina Ridge. The last pitch is steep and tricky.

Dick and Mark working their way up the last steep pitch

The view west

The trail follows the spine of the ridge. Billy Hill (bald spot) at the far end of the ridge. Mt. Konacti, next to Clear lake, seen in the far horizon.

Dick and Mark make it to the top

From Cortina Ridge, view looking west toward Billy Hill and Mt. Konacti

Eastward View

The view of the Sutter Buttes from Cortina Ridge

Hacking our way toward Glascock Mt. This is about where the trail peters out.

This is good enuf. Time for lunch.

We find a good spot for lunch with a great view

Heading back down

Almost home . . . Dick's van comes into view next to Hwy 16 and Bear Creek. End of a 6 mile RT hike with about 3000' of vertical.