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Trip Report    

Winter Scramble - Oakes Peak (winter)

Oakes Peak overnight

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
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    There is no trail on this one. We leveraged the longer approach on our way in (via FS 1062) which required a combination of scrambling and road walking (and some bushwalking) until we met the standard route up SW slopes (after crossing Oakes Creek at ~3800 ft.  Put snowshoes on at ~ 3000 ft and they stayed on all way to the summit. Came down the next day via standard route and walk the road back to the cars. Snow pack was pretty consolidated with minimal postholing  (on snowshoes).


Party of 5 parked our cars right off Bacon creek road where FS 1062 starts (by the gate). We combined some road walking with scrambling (while shortcutting the road walk) until we crossed Oakes Creek at 3800 ft and met the standard route up SW slopes. No other foot prints until about 600 ft below the summit (we met a solo scrambler coming down who tagged Oakes after he tagged Salvation; impressive effort as day trip for only one person given the amount of snow).

We made it on the sumit after 8.5 hours -- yes, it was more strenous than expected (I was estimating 7 hours) but the effort paid off. We did setup camp on the summit for some of the best views you can get from a high camp in the North Cascades. Perfect weather, no wind, solitude, stunning views and great company. We slept in, had breakfast and had hard time pushing ourselves to start packing the camp and getting ready for the hike out. It took us about 4.5 hours to downclimb / scramble down to the road the standard route and and extra 30-40 minutes to walk on the road back to our cars. 

Perfect late winter / early spring overnight outing to kick-off the  heavy pack carries  and simulate longer approaches for the climbing season.