Marsupial Peak + Gilbert Mountain / 袋峯+吉爾伯特山

Gilbert Mountain
Gilbert Mountain from Marsupial Peak

Photos from this trip can be found here.

Some reports described this being an all-day outing, so pup and I car camped for an early start. Relaxing trail hiking, no problem crossing North Creek at 5,100′ with low water level. We took a break in the luscious meadow past the junction with Cedar Creek Trail (#476). Who knew Cedar Creek Trail actually made its way down into this basin from highway 20.

We somehow missed the old miners trail turn-off by a few hundred yards, but realized soon as the main trail began to descend toward North Lake–not where we needed to be today. A short distance of backtracking to locate the reported large tree trunk across trail junction. I built a cairn there and started hiking up the forested trail.

Gilbert from pond
Gilbert Mountain from pond

Photos from this trip can be found here.

Once we reached end of the miners trail out in the clearing, I decided to add Marsupial Peak (aka Gilbert Mountain NW Peak) to the mix. At 6,700′ we headed north into the peak’s south basin overrun by a large talus. Laborious side traverse through the talus, a loose rock gully east of the headwall providing access upward. We ascended better rocks on climbers right to the base of the chossy summit block.

The incorrectly marked USGS high point has us on the broken ridge 30-40 feet west of the true summit. We backtracked down to the choss and moved east into the next gully where I spent awhile finding a feasible route. Pup was able dash up the steep slabs to the summit. I, on the other hand, moved into the next narrow gully east and scrambled the exposed class 3 boulders to the top.

North view
Northwest view

Photos from this trip can be found here.

Best part about this climb was getting a glimpse of Washington Pass and hearing rumbling sounds of motorbikes through the hairpin. Great view with many familiar high points–Liberty Bell, South Early Winters Spires, Kangaroo Ridge, Snagtooth Ridge, Gardner Mountains to name a few. All the while, Gilbert Mountain, our next stop, was staring us down from across the basin.

After carefully making it back down to the basin, we traversed around east of Point 7483 into the upper basin north of Point 7414. Snow coverage in lower parts of the basin, with scree higher up leading to the notch between Points 7483 and 7414. Real work began from the notch to the summit.

Gilbert here we come
Gilbert here we come

Photos from this trip can be found here.

We were able to traverse mostly on the ridge crest, and occasionally traversed south slopes on easier terrain. Terrain steepened significantly the last 400′ to the summit. We tried negotiating the ridge crest and regaining it via the steep and chossy south gullies. But it turned out to be a lot easier to traverse the exposed ridge crest to the top.

Just as it was on Marsupial Peak, we were once again treated with beautiful views all around. Only this time I got a better look into Cedar Creek drainage, our approach to climbing Silver Moon two months earlier.

Marsupial Peak from Gilbert Mountain
Marsupial Peak from Gilbert Mountain

Photos from this trip can be found here.

On the descent I opted for the shortcut mentioned in a report. Steep side traverse through several ribs and gullies took longer than anticipated, eventually we attained south ridge at 6,000′ just before putting on headlamp. From there we descended 2,000′ to the trail, followed by one mile of hiking back to the car.

Access: North Creek Trailhead
Gear: helmet

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