Placeholder Routes & Places

Trip Report    

Alpine Scramble - Hidden Lake Peak

The less typical route up Hidden Lake Peak...

  • Road rough but passable
  • The trail below the trees is a little muddy, with a few blowdowns. Higher up, the *intermittent* snow is okay with no traction, though I would call it on the firmer side in some places; nearly everyone in the group went with approach shoes, one wore some softer hiking shoes (and did end up using microspikes), I wore my Selewa Repaces, and was just as happy to have them. Snow bridges are getting pretty thin in some places and the weather isn’t getting any colder for a while, caution is very necessary.

    Off the snow, the trail is very clear, and one just needs to connect the dots.

    The road definitely has a few bumps, though some of us made it in a Subaru Outback, I did see them scrape on the way out.

    As some people camp at the lakes, it should be noticed that there’s still very consistent snow on and below the E aspect.

Hidden Lake Peak 7/3/21

Intermittent snow gave us a chance to practice a little route finding, discover a few short cuts, and some long cuts.

Here is an alternate route described on SummitPost:

Alternate Route to Main Summit
It is not necessary to go all the way to the notch between the summits in order to climb the main summit. This is especially true in early season when the trail is covered anyway. For this route, contour the northwest slope (trail or snow) for less than a mile until at or just before the damped out western spur ridge is cornered. From here, simply head up slope, weaving through minor rock bands as necessary, to meet the ridge crest someplace north of the summit. The final scramble to the highpoint is blocky Class 3.”

So, we set out ascend via this route, of course it turns out that “damped out western spur ridge” and “less than a mile” are both somewhat vague. We contoured the NW slope until just past the saddle S of point 6257, and gained the N ridge there. This put us right on some more-than-class-3 terrain with some loose rock, exposure, and a couple of big moves. We made it up with some excellent communication and cooperative problem solving, great group.

If I attempted this route again, I would consider looking a little further S for a route onto the N ridge.

Once on the N ridge, the remaining ascent was easy blocky granite and some snow, plenty of places to choose one or the other. The summit itself is a fun perch with plenty of room around for lounging around and having lunch (which we did), and excellent views (which the weather gave us).

We descended by the SW ridge about halfway back to the trail, and then cut more directly W, taking advantage of a few good glisades. Once we intersected the trail we stayed on it all the way back to the trailhead.

Be safe out there!