Trip Report    

Alpine Scramble - Echo Rock, Observation Rock & Tillicum Point

Beautiful weather and a great crew made for a fabulous summer-is-winding-down, overnight trip with three summits attained.

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • This late in the season the Flett Glacier is hard ice and we were very happy to have crampons rather than just microspikes for the short ascent.  With the dying of this glacier, no meaningful crevasses are present but there are some very impressive melt water ice caves on the upper, flat section that you need to keep an eye out for, especially early season when they might be bridged with snow.

This was an overnight trip and we secured a permit for the Ptarmigan XC zone from the rangers over the phone a few days in advance ( doesn't include the XC zones so you can't book online).  Be aware that backcountry permits for the XC zones in MRNP allow for a max of only 5 people!

Room with a view

We did this as a loop trip, approaching through Knapsack Pass to upper Spray Park where we bivied.  After summiting Echo and Observation we returned to Mowich on the Spray Park Trail which we reached via the unmaintained, but very scenic, boot path heading down Spray Park from the large, dirty tarn at 6,600'.  

We summited Tillicum Point after setting up camp at approx 6,400'.   The point is not very distinct but it has an actual name and it was easily accessible from camp so we figured we'd give it a try.  At this time of year there is very little snow remaining so we just ascended the prominent rock rib which comes due north directly down from the summit.  While the talus in the gullies was predictably loose, the rock rib itself was solid and surprisingly fun to climb.  I'd definitely rate the rock quality and scramble here better than Echo or Observation.

Ptarmigan Ridge seen from Tillicum

There is plenty of beta on Echo and Observation so I won't add any more except to say that all of us were glad to have crampons for the mellow but icy Flett Glacier.

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Flett Glacier was mostly hard ice

Spot the scramblers!
South peak of Observation makes for dramatic summit shots.