2017/9/23 – Mount Rolo / 羅洛山

There she is
There she is

Photos from this trip can be found here.

Middle Fork Pasayten River Valley access restrictions had just been lifted a few days ago. But many roads and trails east of the valley remained inaccessible in response to summer wildfire activities.

Pup and I car camped just past Harts Pass late Friday night. Next morning we drove up to Buckskin Ridge Trailhead at Slate Pass and started hiking by 8 AM. From the pass our destination appeared to be under a thin layer of new snow from this past week.

Ferguson Lake
Ferguson Lake

Photos from this trip can be found here.

By the time we crossed Middle Fork Pasayten River at the valley floor, 1,700′ of elevation had been lost. I already wasn’t looking forward to gaining it all back on the way out. We overshot Ferguson Lake Trail junction by a couple hundred yards, but quickly realized and backtracked to find the trail. We took a break by Ferguson Lake before moving on.

From the lake, we ascended northeastward to reach the 7,800′ saddle just north of Point 7985. There we got our first spectacular look at the Lago Slam and Monumental Slam peaks, as well as several other highest summits of Washington not yet in full view.

More high points to negotiate
More high points to negotiate

Photos from this trip can be found here.

The high traverse probably would’ve been much more enjoyable had there not been few inches of snow. We ran the ridge while staying on or west of the crest, plus negotiating a few high points along the way before Mount Rolo eventually came into full view.

Final scramble to the summit was on chossy but firm rock ledges. From this great vantage point, I got a clear view of many of the highest summits of Washington alongside the Eureka Creek Valley. Visibly more snow on those taller mountains than their shorter neighbors including this one.

Pasayten River Valley north view
Pasayten River Valley north view

Photos from this trip can be found here.

Clouds were high enough to provide decent views to the distant south, as well as views of Canadian peaks to the north beyond Middle Fork Pasayten River Valley.

On the way out, we reversed our route and quickly made it back to Ferguson Lake, where the tent we saw earlier was still around. Just past the lake, we ran into the owner of the tent out scouting for deer. He and I briefly chatted about his hunting trip and the weather before going our separate ways.

Eureka Creek lineup
Eureka Creek lineup

Photos from this trip can be found here.

Back on Middle Fork Pasayten River Trail, we slowly gained back every inch lost and got back up to Slate Pass just after dark.

Access: Buckskin Ridge Trailhead at Slate Pass
Gear: helmet

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