Mount Price via Hester Lake / 經海斯特湖上普萊斯山

For years, I would see Mount Price from other places. But I had always thought that the route started from the Middle Fork Campground. So I never pursued it. Then after our recent outing up north, we went up to the mountain after I did more research.

Mount Price behind Hester Lake
Mount Price behind Hester Lake

See more trip photos here.

Mount Price at a Glance

Access: Dingford Creek Trailhead
Round Trip: TBD
Elevation Range: 1400′-5587′
Gear: helmet
GPS Track: available
Dog-Friendly: on the trail

Dingford Creek Trail

Many cars were at the trailhead when the pup and I arrived. I talked to another hiker as we were getting ready to leave. Then I found out that the trailhead was also the starting point to Goldmyer Hot Springs.

Six miles of hiking later, we finally came to the outlet of Hester Lake. Shortly, the trail ended after we walked past two campsites. I looked for a path along the lakeshore. But there was nothing but the brush and slide alder.

Dingford Creek Trailhead
Dingford Creek Trailhead

See more trip photos here.

Hester Lake and Little Hester Lake

At first, we went higher and away from the shore. But then I remembered the one report I read suggesting staying low and close to the water. But without any snow, going around the lake through the brush was arduous.

Eventually, we made it to the west shore by the talus between the two lakes. Then we tried avoiding the brush and cliffs by staying close to the rocks. By the time we went up to the outlet of Little Hester Lake, the clouds had moved into the area.

Little Hester Lake westshore
Little Hester Lake westshore

See more trip photos here.

Mount Price North Ridge

We couldn’t see the lake in its entirety. So we walked clockwise along the lakeshore to the west and took a break there. Miraculously, the clouds that had been drifting over the lake 20 minutes ago suddenly lifted. It was a good sign, I thought.

Once we went up to the 4680′ saddle, we then worked out way up the north ridge. Half of the time, we were able to stay on the ridgeline. But along the way, we found two places with cliffs of enormous boulders. So we bypassed them from the west.

Mount Price north ridge
Mount Price north ridge

See more trip photos here.

The Final Stretch

Soon, the eastern slopes dropped steeply. Then from the 5200′ meadow, I finally got my first glimpse of the summit. Just past the grass field below the top, the terrain steepened with dense growth. There was also more exposure.

I used lots of veggie belay to move upward. But the exposure didn’t seem to faze the pup. At 50′ below the top, the terrain slowly flattened. Then we finished the last bit of climbing climb with a short and leisurely walk.

Hester Lake and LIttle Hester Lake
Hester Lake and LIttle Hester Lake

See more trip photos here.

Mount Price Summit Plus Outro

Views were decent on all sides except to the north. So I moved up and down the east ridge to photograph places from where I had seen the mountain. I managed to catch a glimpse of Chair Peak and a bit of Snow Lake. Big Snow Mountain wasn’t fully visible through the mists. Both lakes looked even bigger from up here.

I gave ourselves enough time to make it back down to Hester Lake’s outlet. So we would leave the area before dark. Then we would also be on the trail for the six-mile hike back out in the dark.

So long, Mount Price
So long, Mount Price

See more trip photos here.

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