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Trip Report    

Alpine Scramble - Old Desolate

One day scramble of Old Desolate from the Carbon River trailhead.

  • Road suitable for all vehicles

Left Carbon River trailhead on bikes at 7:15am and was at Ipsut campground in 50 minutes. Hiked the Carbon River trail to the Moraine Park meadow area before the trail switchbacks up to Mystic Pass. Headed up that last forested gully which was less bushwhacking than I expected. Had to move left across 3-4 diagonal slide runnels to keep on our bearing toward the top of the bouldered gully. Crossed the plateau (6400') area of upper Moraine Park then picked a route up the final boulder field to the ridge. Ended up further south than we needed to be and had to move along the ridge past the benchmarked summit to the true summit (7137') that has the register.  Staying just off the east side of the ridge worked best while traversing.  Exited off the ridge a bit north of the true summit and found what we felt was a better way down that was less steep and didn't have as many large propped-up boulders. Wished we'd just gone up that way and traversed south the the summit. Returned via the same route from the plateau. Fairly fast group - car to car was 12 hours and the off-trail portion was 3.5 hours.