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Trip Report    

Intermediate Alpine Climb - Cathedral Peak & Amphitheater Mountain

Very long, but extremely fun multi peak climb and backcountry tour.

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • All peaks can be accessed via trail with very little off trail travel to reach scramble portions.
    Water exists at all stream crossing but trail is dry between Cathedral Pass and Tungsten Mine. Only a small fill up stream exists 1/4 before the mine on Boundary Trail.
    Great camping at mine.  Additional camp and water 4 miles past mine SE on Tungsten trail.
    We did the CW loop.

Day 1:  Met at 4:30am and drove to Cathedral Driveway TH, boots on trail at 11:30am.
Made it to Four Point Lake at 5:15pm and felt good enough to grab Remmel as a sunset hike.
Put up camp, hung food and moving 6:15 pm.  Summit push took 1hr40 min.  Enjoyed sunset and
returned to camp by headlamp at 9:30pm to tend blisters, mutilated toes and assorted miseries.  17.8 miles, 4800ft gain.

Day 2:  We were under the allusion that, because we did Remmel the night before, day 2 would be 
easy with the only goal of Amphitheater then to camp.  I had beta on a short cut which began at the
saddle 45 minutes NW of the lake.  Once at saddle we tried to see the route down to where we need to cross river but it was socked in and just started to rain.  Off we go into the 2hr bushwhack and carwash.  If dry, I recommend this route as it saves about 2.5-3 miles, but only a little time off the day.  Soaked, we need to find a way across the river, but this was tedious as the terrain got pretty steep.  River crossed, trail found, rain stopped....  
Rain started again in force as we tool the Lesamiz Trail, but we all opted to go for Amphitheater as the terrain is quite tame.  Made summit 6hrs after leaving Four Point Lake.  Quickly made our way down, then travelled CW around Amphitheater to Upper Cathedral Lake, south shore camp.  8hr day 2800 ft gain.

Day 3:  One member opted out due to fatigue as the rest of team went up Cathedral.  Protected gap with a few med cams and handline.  R/T to camp: 4.5 hrs
Packed up and headed over Cathedral Pass, then to Apex Pass by 1pm.  All but one went up Apex which, IMO, is one of the beast vantages in the area for views.  We were on Apex summit in 40 minutes, explored the area then headed down to Mine which is about 2 miles from Apex Pass.
Discussed going all the way to 30 mi camp, but that is another 7 miles and 3hrs.  Mine was super cool to explore, play horse shoes, or just chill.

Day 4:  Very windy that night and the rain returned.  Departed camp at 7am and at cars by 12:30pm.  1300 ft gain to cars was soul crushing, but it goes quick.

Thoughts:  4 days is perfect, but day 1 put the hurt on the team, especially that Remmel was included.  Everyone was extremely fit, but I feel car camping would take pressure off the team and allowed for a moderate pace instead of the race we created.
Do the cross country short cut if it's dry.  Saves mileage, but not much time.
There is a shitty gully down from Amphitheater which takes you down on the north side of lake.
Because it a bowling alley and you would miss out on a stunning hike, take the trail.  The south side of the lake offers the best lake view photography in the area.
While it just missed the Bulger List, climb Apex. Quick and has really cool terrain.
Bring lots of Leukotape.