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Trip Report    

Winter Scramble - Axis Peak

Successful winter climb of Axis from Stuart Lake.

  • Road impassable/closed
  • The Eightmile Road and the trail were completely snow covered requiring trail breaking all the way. We only found some tracks the first 1/4 mile on the road and then the trail breaking was on 5 of of us. The bridge was completely covered in snow and it looked very sketchy. After spending 1/2h finding an alternative for crossing and concluding we were running out of options we decided to leverage the bridge after Ian and Tim did some shoveling. For the climbing route we found about 6-8 inches of fresh snow on top of a crusty layer which forced us to switch from snowshoes to crampons as soon as we started to gain elevation from the lake. Crampons worked great with some occasional potholing.  We did gain the ridge west of Axis close to the saddle between the  false summit of Axis and the 6800 point and then stayed on the ridge all the way to the summit (had to drop ~250ft and then regain elevation between false and true summit). 

5 of us welcomed the new year (12/31-1/1) with a successful winter overnight ascent of Axes Peak from Stuart Lake which was a great plan C option. Had the whole area to ourselves. We had a long day on the 31st but beautiful weather and scenery kept us going and we made it to Stuart Lake after 8 hours of continuous trail breaking including about 1h spent to figure out how to cross the creek because the bridge was completely covered in snow and looked sketchy. After running out of options, we ended up leveraging it  after Ian and Tim did some shoveling. We did setup the camp in the dark at the NE end of the lake right next to running water. The temps were in teens that evening and no winds both days. We had a great weather window and conditions for the summit push day as well. It took us about 5.5 h RT camp to camp and and slightly less than 6 hours to hike out.