Photos from this trip can be found here.
The mountain doesn’t get too many visitors. Once leaving the road after 1.5 miles of walking, it’s everyone for themselves. Massive down trees, brush, alder, you name it. Type 2 fun for those who are into this type of scramble.
Lowe Creek road was gated at 1.3 miles from the Highway 2 exit. From the gate 1.5 miles of walking to Lowe Creek where the bridge had been washed out for sometime. Pups and I went 100 feet down stream and found a log to cross the creek, then another .1 mile past the creek we started the scramble. The section from the road at 900′ elevation to the quarry at 2600′ seemed to have been crux of the entire trip due to large number of down trees to negotiate.
Lots of brush along the way and even more down trees between 1800′ and 2400′. Several times we crossed an old logging road covered in trees, alder, and brush and it was barely recognizable. Stumbled upon a deteriorated cabin a couple hundred feet before the quarry at 2600′, a bigger pit than I had imagined. We then bypassed the quarry on its right (north) onto a steep ridge where I was surprised to discover a faint hikers path. We followed the path to a flat area at 3800′, but soon it was buried in snow patches.
As terrain steepened I put on microspikes at 3900′ for traction on firm snow, then switched to snowshoes at 4150′ on soft semi slushy snow. From there we stayed just below the ridge line and made our way to the saddle between Point 4800 and the summit block. After stashing snowshoes and poles at the top of the snow about 100 feet below the summit, we managed to scramble up the east ridge with good holds and weaved our way through big boulders and loose rocks to the summit.
Summit was relatively flat and somewhat corniced on the north side so we avoided that area all together. Great views on this summit, couldn’t believe I hadn’t noticed the mountain from the highway given the number of times I had driven past it. Main attraction was definitely Crosby Mountain, which dominated the southern skyline. Index and Philadelphia Mountains to the west, and Baring, Townsend, Grotto, Gunn among others to the northeast. Lennox, Cleveland plus other familiar faces to the east and the south.
After spending an hour on top, we retraced our steps back down to top of snow and out the way we came. Down trees and brush awaited our return…