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Wolfjaws Attempt


Submitted By Michael Virdone

The Mountains & Stats

10 miles with 2919 feet of gain
  • Upper Wolfjaw (4185 Feet, NY) globe Mountain

People On The Trip

Trip Report

     We had originally planned on hiking both upper and lower wolfjaw however when we got to the trail register at the AMR no one had been up since the recent snow. We decided to go for it anyways to try our hand at breaking trail.

      We took the bridge about 3/8 of a mile down the AMR road over to the west river trail. From when we left the road to the UWJ summit we were breaking trail the whole way. The trail breaking not only slowed our pace,but we lost the trail quite a few times as well. We eventually reached the wedge brook trail and began our ascent. The trail is a nice easy grade until you reach the shoulder of UWJ. When we got to the first trail junction on the AMR side we decided to breakout the trail to the LWJ junction first, but hike UWJ first (bad idea since we had to gain/lose all that elevation).

      Once we reached the trail junction to the JBL we began the ascent of UWJ. The trail up to the false summit of UWJ is very steep in places (we probably should have put on crampons a few times) but we made it by kicking in our MSRs. Eventually we reached the false summit of UWJ and from there it was relatively quick to the true summit. We took pictures and then began heading back down. We utilized a "seated glissade" for a number of the steeper sections to avoid a fall (although this probably helped the trail conditions since the majority of our uphill problems was from the snow sliding off the icy crust below).

      By the time we got back to the LWJ/UWJ col it was getting late and we were tired so we decided to bail on LWJ. We took the lower trail from the JBL side to the AMR side (a much easier trail than going around LWJ).

      We began the hike down making pretty good time however different areas of powder and wind scour made running downhill interesting to say the least. Eventually we were back at the car after a hike that never seemed to end. All in all it was a long, tiring experience in breaking trail.

The Good and The Bad

The Good:

There were some decent views along the way
Breaking trail to contribute something

The Bad:

The west river trail was dangerously close to the side of a ravine at points
Breaking trail a second time on the way down UWJ

The Drive

We left syracuse at 4:30 am and got back at 1:30 am so it was "interesting" to say the least. Nicole was nice enough to drive home most of the way which helped me out a ton


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