2018/11/24 – Icicle Ridge III / 冰柱脊之三

The ridge continues
The ridge continues

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The black pup and I had hiked a small section of Icicle Ridge before. We’d begin from the Fourth of July Creek Trail junction to the lookout site. Though, we had never hiked the ridgeline at great length. While waiting for the pass conditions to improve, the yellow pup and I explored the eastern part of the ridge.

The Lowdown on Icicle Ridge

Access: Icicle Ridge Trailhead
Round Trip: 12 miles
Elevation Range: 1200′-5560′
Gear: microspikes and snowshoes

Walking on sunshine

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Icicle Ridge Trail

Even with the recent snowfall, there were many boot tracks in the snow. It was much colder in the shade. Though, the lower parts of the trail were still icy because of the low morning temperatures. It’s just over two miles of hiking through the long switchbacks to the 2880′ saddle.

Tumwater Canyon from the saddle
Tumwater Canyon from the saddle

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The trail continued to climb up the south slopes, and then it intersected the ridge three more times. The path then remained on the crest beyond 4200′. The days-old boot tracks we had been following eventually turned around at 4800′. There the snow had deepened, and so I put on snowshoes.

Snowshoe time
Snowshoe time

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The Six-Mile Stopping Point

We hiked up another 1000′ elevation in the most forested section of the ridge. Then at 5200′, we broke out into open and moderate terrain. Half a mile more hiking through a small section of open forest, we then went out into another clearing. The opening faced the Eightmile Creek drainage. We were now six miles in from the trailhead.

Eightmile Mountain
Eightmile Mountain

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This was the closest to The Enchantments I’d ever been seeing it under fresh powder. The snow significantly brought out the contrasts between the lights and the darks. It also cast a different personality over the peaks.

Panoramic view on Icicle Ridge
Panoramic view on Icicle Ridge

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Outro

We didn’t stay long on the ridge. I still wanted to go over Snoqualmie Pass before dark. After arriving back at the 2800′ saddle, we made a quick stop on the Tumwater Tower. This high point overlooked the City of Leavenworth. Then we proceeded to hike back down to the car.

Panoramic view over Leavenworth
Panoramic view over Leavenworth

See more trip photos here.

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