Fools Day Peak in April / 四月上愚人節峯

I came across Fools Day Peak during a recent search. So after yesterday’s trip out east, we came to Salmon La Sac to look for sunshine. We were also here right after the onset of the outbreak.

Fools Day Peak from the road
Fools Day Peak from the road

See more trip photos here.

Fools Day Peak at a Glance

Access: NF-4308
Round Trip: 4.1 miles
Elevation Range: 3200′-5203′

Gear: snowshoes
GPS Track: available
Dog-Friendly: yes

Road 4308

Winter recreation was still underway five weeks ago. So I expected to start walking from Salmon La Sac Road. But glad that the roads have since been clear of snow. So we were able to drive through to 3200′. Then I pulled into a big open space by the snow patch on the roadway.

Two guys had tried to drive through the snow but became stuck. Then they tried digging out the car with bare hands and tree branches. It looked like they were close to removing most of the snow. So I left them with my shovel, and then the pups and i started walking.

You've got this
You’ve got this

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The Starting Point

Half a mile ahead at the junction with NF-4312 was an RV. Judging by the amount of snow around the vehicle, it became stuck also. A girl looked out and waved. But then she looked away. So I assumed that help was on the way.

There was still quite a bit of snow past that point. So we made a right and hiked on NF-4312 to the next junction. Shortly, we took a sharp left onto NF-4312-111 and went south. Later I found what looked like a trail at the bottom of the ridgeline.

First view of The Louvre
First view of The Louvre

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Fools Day Peak East Ridge

Earlier I saw Fools Day Peak from the road. The top seemed woodsy. So I thought it would be another summit without views. Oh well. But at the least, we would get in our exercise. It was still great to be away from everyone.

There were lots of down trees lower on the ridge. So we stayed on the south side of the ridgeline. But as the terrain slowly steepened, we then moved back onto the crest. I put on snowshoes at 4000′ shortly. By now, the snow had become slightly slushy.

First view of the Stuart Range
First view of the Stuart Range

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The Final Stretch

There wasn’t much route-finding on this peak. All we had to do was following the ridge clear up to the top. Along the way, we passed through a few clearings. Skookum Peak and The Louvre first came into view. Then higher up, the Stuart Range appeared.

The terrain flattened past 4800′. So we were able to move more efficiently in the soft snow. We spent the final 300′ back in the forest. Then the terrain steepened and widened in the last 100′. Hooray! We would have views, after all!

Fools Day Peak summit at last
Fools Day Peak summit at last

See more trip photos here.

Fools Day Peak Summit

The forest ended abruptly. It also created an open space between the trees and the summit. Judging from Google Earth, a road goes through here when bare. But there was still feet of snow on top. So we stayed away from the corniced south side.

We had great views of the Kachess Ridge. The top of Mount Rainier also poked out from behind the ridge. Trees covered much of the westerns slopes to see anything down below. Thorp Mountain was just to our west. Then Stuart Range and Sasse Ridge were over on the east.

Red Mountain and the Stuart Range
Red Mountain and the Stuart Range

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Outro

This outing was relatively short without the extra road walk. On the way down, we moved slightly to the north of the crest. So I could keep snowshoes on for a while. But I took them off just before we went back onto the road. Then we shortcut down to NF-4308.

The RV now had two shovels next to it in the snow. So it looked like someone had dug some while we were away. There were still people inside. But they avoided eye contact with me. Another .25 mile of the road walk, and then we were back at the car.

One last look
One last look

See more trip photos here.

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