Yakima Peak + Deadwood Peak by Chinook Peak + Chinook Pass / 雅基馬峯

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Yakima Peak and Deadwood Peak perch over Chinook Pass near Chinook Peak. They rest on the border of Mount Rainier National Park and the national forest. Moreover, the peaks are close together to climb in one trip.

Yakima Peak sitting on the other side
Yakima Peak sitting on the other side

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Yakima Peak and Deadwood Peak at a Glance

Access: Sheep Lake and Sourdough Gap Trailhead
Round Trip: 2 miles
Elevation Range: 5440′-6280′
Gear: snowshoes, crampons
Route Info: Robert Jenner
GPS Track: available
Dog-Friendly: with guidance

The Preface

Due to the no-pet policy, we haven’t spent much time around Mount Rainier. The only other time we were here was on the way to Sourdough Gap seven years ago. But Yakima Peak and Deadwood Peak were on the park boundary.

We would still stick to the rule by entering from the national forest side. But knowing how accessible Chinook Pass was, I waited a day to avoid the mass. The forecast was also better the day after, so it’s a win-win situation.

After sunrise
After sunrise

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En Route to Deadwood Peak

Yakima Peak and Deadwood Peak are right above Chinook Pass, both visible from the parking lot. But if it says anything about the closeness, the trip with two peaks combined was only two miles.

It took a short while to reach the shared saddle at 400′ above. We continued on the south ridge and soon saw the first outcrops. But instead of bypassing from either side, which looked sketchy, we traversed the crest.

Today's Deadwood Peak crew
Today’s Deadwood Peak crew

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The Final Stretch

More outcrops ahead forced us to bypass via the west. Then we slowly moved to the east of the ridgeline and found a faint path. Before long, we reached the rocky top adorned with a radio tower and what looked like an electrical box.

I thought we were on the summit until clouds to the north dissipated to reveal the peak. So we downclimbed onto the west and continued on the crest to the actual high point at 400′ away. Meanwhile, it grew increasingly cloudy in the early morning.

The final stretch
The final stretch

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Onward to Yakima Peak

Yakima Peak was only half a mile south of the joining saddle. After a short break, we went down through two snow slopes from the west. Then I went back to retrieve my snowshoes below the first outcrops.

I saw some skiers with a pup about to ski off the pass. The northwest gully seemed vertical from afar but looked tamer as we walked below it toward the west ridge. So we went straight up the steep slope instead.

Yakima Peak on the other side of the saddle
Yakima Peak on the other side of the saddle

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Yakima Peak Summit Plus Outro

Soon, we made the final stretch to the top as two skiers were leaving. We’d see them again on our way out, back for seconds. But when we stood atop the broad summit, clouds had beat us and overtaken the area.

I thought about waiting out the mists but wanted to leave before more people came. So we quickly retraced our steps down the gully back to the saddle. Then with a 400′ drop, we soon reached back at the car.

American River Valley view
American River Valley view

See more trip photos here.

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