Photos from this trip can be found here.
Stevens Pass was more wet than icy. Turnoff onto Smithbrook Road was still accessible, with only a few inches of snow. So getting to the trailhead by the hairpin wasn’t a problem. Any more snow, low-clearance and/or 2WD will need to consider parking close to the highway and hike in instead.
The mostly cloudy weather forecast stayed true, with occasional snow flurry and light wind. We started scrambling just past the talus field east of the trail. The slope was s bit steep and somewhat icy but manageable with spikes. Once on the ridge, the way to Union Peak summit became more apparent. The summit was woodsy to the west, and we would have had nice views to the east if it weren’t so cloudy.
Getting to Jove Peak required losing about 500 feet in elevation down to the col and gaining 700 feet to the summit. The traverse was more straightforward than anticipated. Summit was completely socked in when arrived, the clouds just wouldn’t budge. It was a bit windy, so we took refuge behind some trees just below the summit and had lunch there.
We got back to the car just as the sun was setting.