Summit Elevation (m): 1690
Elevation Gain (m): 550
Round Trip Time (hr): 2
Total Trip Distance (km): 5
Quick ‘n Dirty Rating: Class 1 – you fall, you tripped over your own feet
Difficulty Notes: No difficulties – mostly hiking / snowshoeing on steep grass with some minor bushwhacking. Crossing the Sheep River is the only hazard.
Technical Rating: OT2; YDS (Hiking)
Map: Google Maps
After completing Mesa Butte (when we were turned around due to heavy snow on McNab!) Steven and I decided we should go back to McNab to see if the weather had improved. It had. There were literally dozens of people parked around the winter gate and lower down in the day use parking lot for Sandy McNab! The sun was shining, kids were sledding and folks were roasting wieners and marshmallows over cheery fires in the designated picnic spots.
It was quite fun – and very unexpected for a February day. Steven and I parked along the road and strapped on the ‘shoes. We got a few weird looks from people on the picnic tables nearby as we stepped over the fence and plunged down the steep embankment to the Sheep River below. McNab it obvious from the parking lot and there’s nothing tricky about the route finding either. Just go up the obvious (treed) ridge.
The best views are on the hike up and include a huge washout in the hillside, right beside the trail. There is some height loss as well, but nothing too dramatic. The summit views are among the WORST I’ve had – so don’t do this “mountain” for the views but rather for the exercise and the company. Combined with Mesa Butte it was worth the drive, but otherwise I’d only bother if I was in the area and extremely bored.