2017/9/24 – Devils Peak 8081 / 魔鬼峯8081

Destination awaits
Destination looming ahead

Photos from this trip can be found here.

Devils Peak in the Pasayten Wilderness. For Devils Peak off Mountain Loop Highway, check out this post.

My original plan was to climb Mount Rolo one day, spend the night near Robinson Pass, and then climb Devils Peak the next day before returning to the trailhead. But since the map showed the 478A trail junction being in close proximity to Slate Pass, I decided to get a good night sleep back at the trailhead in between trips.

Right away I took notice of today’s destination looming near the head of Robinson Creek Valley, as we once again descended into Middle Fork Pasayten River Valley. The inconspicuous trail 478A turn-off took some time to locate, as the reported cairn was nowhere to be found. From the turnoff, rest of the hike to Robinson Creek Trail (#478) junction was a breeze.

Golden morning
Golden morning

Photos from this trip can be found here.

We left the trail by the junction and scrambled up the slopes in moderate brush and down trees. As we scrambled toward the 6,400′ bench, the distant wolf howling had us on edge. The sound began to fade as we moved farther south. From the larch-filled meadow, we continued to travel south aiming for the southwest-trending buttress coming off of Devils Peak’s west ridge.

We managed to get ourselves stuck in a short section of waist-high, dense shrubs along the way. Lots of larches strewed these steep slopes, and many of them had already turned the vibrant gold color. Just past the larches was the aforementioned buttress, which we negotiated at 7,000′ on loose choss.

Don't any of you move
Don’t any of you move

Photos from this trip can be found here.

On the other side of the buttress was the large talus field that I saw earlier from the trail. And getting to the 7,400′ notch on the other side of the talus seemed to take forever. Glad nothing moved as we boulder hopped. The notch gave us our first look at the steep access gully, as well as view to the misty Robinson Creek Valley with cascading ridges.

More choss to get through before getting to the access gully, filled with nothing but…more choss. Pup and I took turns in getting up the narrow gully to avoid getting hit by falling rocks. Things looked much better past this point. We finished the last bit of scramble to the summit ridge on better rocks and solid ledges.

Access gully
Access gully

Photos from this trip can be found here.

A short ridge traverse finally put us on the summit; it began to drizzle then. Views to the north were largely obscured by low hanging clouds, including that of Mount Rolo from the day before. Better views in all the other directions. The monumental Robinson Mountain was practically in our face.

Fearing the weather would worsen, we left the summit after a short stay. Sky had cleared up a bit when we got back down to the notch. Sun came out again when we got back down to the larch meadow. From the trail, we reversed the route and hiked back to Slate Pass in an afternoon full of sunshine.

Robinson Mountain
Robinson Mountain

Photos from this trip can be found here.

Access: Buckskin Ridge Trailhead at Slate Pass
Gear: helmet

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