On August 11th, 2008 XXXI, the Molossian Geographical Society launched its first expedition in many years, to explore the nearby Molossian Alps. This was the inaugural expedition of the revived Molossian Geographical Society, which has been dormant since before the turn of the century.

The expedition set out on a warm morning, with the goal of distant Mount Prosciutto in the Molossian Alps, known also as the Virginia Range. Mount Prosciutto is probably known by another name, as well, but we haven't a clue what it is. The expedition toiled up First Hill, which has an excellent view of the Dayton Valley, in which the Republic of Molossia lies. First Hill is so named because it is a location from which previous expeditions have begun, as well as this one. From First Hill, the expedition climbed upward toward the crest of Disappointment Ridge, so named because at the crest of this ridge is where our intrepid explorers discovered that they were on the wrong hill. To reach Mount Prosciutto, the party would have to descend into a deep ravine, and then ascend the mountain. There was no other recourse, so this is exactly what they did. From Disappointment Ridge, the expedition descended to Stone Creek, which was dry, and became the route back down the canyon, to begin the ascent of Mount Prosciutto. A secondary goal was a mysterious mine in the side of Mount Prosciutto. Upon reaching the mine, after scrambling up a very sandy slope, the party examined it closely without entering, which is dangerous. It proved to be mysterious indeed, as it was certainly man-made, but no road or trail led to it, bringing into question how the miners came and went, and who they were. Following the investigation of the mine, the expedition began the arduous ascent of Mount Prosciutto. The climb took them through One Tree Notch, an interesting sandstone structure, before finally arriving at the summit of Mount Prosciutto. After lunch and a requisite photo op at the summit, the expedition started down toward Molossia. The route took them down Mine Hill, site of another mysterious mine, with the same lack of evident access. This mine had been explored during a previous expedition, so this visit was a follow-up to try and solve the riddle of the mine - now two mines. Rather than the riddle being solved, the mystery only deepened. Perhaps the solution lies in a future expedition. In the meantime, the mine having been investigated, the explorers returned to Molossia, hot and tired but accomplished.

Dayton Valley,
Looking Toward Molossia

The Road Behind

The Road Ahead

Distant Molossia,
From Atop First Hill

The President
Climbing First Hill

The Molossian
Alps Ahead

The Goal -
Mount Prosciutto

First Hill
From Disappointment

Sandstone Rock
Disappointment Ridge

Looking Up
Stone Creek, Down Which
The Expedition Came

Mysterious Mine,
Mount Prosciutto

One Tree Notch,
Mount Prosciutto

Looking Back
Through One Tree Notch

Animal Den,
Mount Prosciutto

Sandstone Rocks,
Mount Prosciutto

Atop Mount

Looking Down
From Mount Prosciutto

Distant Misfit Flats,
Site Of Many Molossian
Rocket Launches

Mount Prosciutto
From Mine Hill

Summit Of
Mine Hill

Mysterious Mine,
Mine Hill

The Other End Of
The Same Mine,
Mine Hill

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