Trip Report    

Winter Scramble - Valhalla, 5050 Pass via Dosewallips

Surprisingly good conditions, especially so given the vigorous weather in so many other locales. Glorious Mount Constance views on this beautiful 5000’ gain trip from the Dosewallips River Road. (lead photo from the summit of Valhalla, The Brothers on the left to the SSW)

  • Road suitable for all vehicles
  • Other than tree drip (due to sunny interludes and our southern aspect) our ascent had almost perfect conditions with bare trail, calm winds, and brisk temperatures to keep us cool.  Substantial snow started at ~4300’, and even then the trail was frequently visible under the trees.  Donned our snowshoes at ~4800’ for intermittent powder snow drifts over an icy under layer to reach Valhalla.  Used micro-spikes a bit on descent to help with the steep, slippery trail.  The ‘end of road’ is currently at ~8.6 miles from Highway 101 with the Dosewalllips River Road in reasonable condition (aside from the usual potholes).

We couldn’t have asked for better conditions, especially so given the threatening forecasts in so many other areas.  No other parties at the trailhead, and only a few folks along the road coming back.  Anticipating a relatively short (albeit steep) day we opted for the 2nd ferry sailing which saw us heading out at 8:30am.  After one break around 4300’ we were soon standing on the summit of Valhalla and stunning views of Mount Constance.


Mount Constance on the far right, with Point Schellin 2nd peak from the left.


Cat’s Ears is below and to the left of Point Schellin.  Above Cat’s Ears you can see an unnamed snow/ice encrusted peak on the ridge containing Inner Constance.

We made good time back to the cars arriving well before sunset.  A great day in the mountains on this ~5000’ gain, 8 mile outing.  Our total trip time was just under 8 hours (4 hours on the ascent, 3 hours on the descent, several substantial breaks).  Photos from this and other trips to this venue can be seen here.