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Old 06-28-2018, 05:55 PM   #8
Trail Boss
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Join Date: Nov 2010
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Originally Posted by Lonehiker View Post
What if your a bushwhacker and make your own trailhead. Do first time 46ers have to follow a designated trail. Trailheads start from different elevations. I say if you climb 300 feet your good. Let me guess, you can't jump off the Whiteface Memorial Highway for a bushwhack.
You can indeed make your own 'trailhead' when bushwhacking. Your starting point simply needs to be a valid one (more below).

There are no "designated trails" for aspiring 46ers. You just need to begin from a valid starting point.

Yes, trailheads start at different elevations. For the ADK 46er peaks, New Russia is the lowest and ADK Loj is the highest.

You can jump off the Memorial Highway to start a bushwhack, provided you walked, not drove, up the highway to start the bushwhack. People ski up the road in winter to Whiteface and that counts.

Regarding "climb 300 feet and you're good", it's invalid if you drive up the road. Whiteface is the only 4K peak with a road and so the ADK46ers have disqualified it as a starting point. Otherwise you get the absurd situation where you can drive up the summit parking lot and go up and down the stairs all day long and claim you climbed Whiteface three dozen times in a day.

The concept of a valid starting point is not hypothetical. It's needed to maintain a level playing field when qualifying an ascent. For example, if I hike over Marcy to get to Skylight, my return trip over Marcy (~900 feet of ascent) does not qualify as a second ascent of Marcy. I can say I visited three peaks that day (Marcy twice and Skylight once) but, for book-keeping purposes, I ascended only two peaks.
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