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View Full Version : Coburn Mountain 7/12/08



Jay Meyer
07-14-2008, 10:18 AM
The second part of a two mountain series with Adrian K., after Boundary Bald Mountain in the morning (separate thread).

The Enchanted Mountain Road is passable, but a high clearance 4WD vehicle is strongly recommended (esp. for a very eroded section approx. 1 mile before the old ski lodge site/clearing). Note: Enchanted Mountain Road is on the west side of Rt. 201 approx. 15 miles south of the Rt. 201/15 junction in Jackman and approx. 2 miles south of Parlin Pond, marked with a relatively new road sign; at the entrance to the road there are several other signs, including a white "Land Share" sign, as well as a power pole with guy wires covered with one white and one yellow plastic sleeve. Once you reach the ski lodge site (a large clearing with fire ring, a large rectangular metal object, and the nearby lodge foundation), you can either park or turn right/north and follow a good side road for another couple of hundred yards to the turnoff for the steep trail up toward the summit (a yellow snowmobile trail marker indicates 2 miles to the summit from this turnoff).

The trail starts as a very rough, rocky and steep road up to a plateau on the mountain's south side, where there is a radio building with an antenna tower that was bent over at its top when we visited on 7/12/08. From the gate behind this radio building, you have two choices for your ascent: follow a short, very steep, unmarked but relatively clear footpath straight up to the mountain's summit, or continue on a snowmobile trail that heads west and then ascends the mountain's west ridge. The snowmobile trail has a much gentler gradient and is quite clear and very easy to follow. We choose to ascend the footpath (carrying jugs of water for training weight), and then looped back by descending the snowmobile trail; this was very enjoyable and is recommended as way to enjoy the mountain's various perspectives.

At the summit you will find a large new radio building (metal quonset hut type construction) with a very large solar array. There is also a relatively new observation tower, approx. 20', from which the views are excellent in all directions. You might wish to bring binoculars to enjoy these outstanding views, although we didn't and certainly got an eyeful regardless.

Met an interesting 79 year old gentleman who emerged from the woods while we were resting on the summit. He had bushwhacked up after driving his dirt bike up a logging road on the mountain's north side. He proceeded to wave off our concerns about his bleeding hand, and demonstrated his various electronic doo-hickey's including GPS with homemade harness and a SPOT satellite communicator. Amazing; I can only hope that I'm bushwhacking up such a beautiful mountain when I'm his age.

Almost identical hiking times as with our earlier trip up Boundary Bald: approx. 1 hr. 45 to the summit, and less than 3 total, including a long break on top.