Trip Report    

Alpine Scramble - Mount Jupiter

This great, but long early season snow scramble had fantastic views (~5000’ gain and ~20 miles due to the locked logging road gate). Should remain a snow scramble for the next 4 weeks, then a hot-dry hike after that.

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Almost perfect conditions for this early season snow scramble.  We hit mostly continuous snow starting at ~4700’ elevation, causing us to transition from approach shoes to mountain boots, gaiters, ice axes, and helmets.  Lots of route finding challenges with fragments of the trail appearing here and there.  The primary ‘do not fall’ zone (at ~5400’) is easily crossed:


    (photo by Leaf Petersen) but there were a number of other sections with hard snow over a soft layer that also had respectable consequences:


    For most of these on descent we faced in, kicked steps, and used self-belay with our ice axes (moving one point of contact at a time):


    (photo by Tomas Singliar)

A great day in the mountains.  After squeezing our 5 non-carpool (COVID era) cars into the last remaining spaces (elevation ~1200’, maximum of 6 parking spaces near the gate) we headed out in our approach shoes with cool/overcast skies (caused by a low level marine layer).  To minimize Tick encounters we hiked the logging roads before transitioning to trail in a clear cut at ~2800’:


The trail soon entered forest, giving us moderate temperatures, gentle breezes, and cool shade for almost the entire approach. We took a few substantial breaks throughout the day, plus lunch on the summit for a total trip time of ~10.5 hours (6 hours on ascent, 4.5 hours on descent).  Photos from this and other trips to this venue can be seen here.