Top 5 Trip Reports - October 2021

Every month, we sort through trip reports Mountaineers have posted from their adventures. After that, we pick our favorites and celebrate them here!
Issy Steckel Issy Steckel
Communications Associate
November 01, 2021

This month, we're sharing the trip reports that epitomize fall adventures. From colorful foliage and misty mountains, to crisp mornings and dustings of snow, October in the Pacific Northwest surprises us with a little bit of everything. 

Enjoy a backpacking trip with great larch views, a youth club's first outing (!), an end-of-season scramble, an empowering crag climb, and a day hike that required a river crossing or two. 

Click on the photos to read the full reports from the volunteers and members.

Backpack - Golden Lakes Loop - 10/4 to 10/7

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"Golden larch and aspen appeared part way up and by the time we got to the lake the larch color was all around us and stunning! Needles are falling fast now though I project that the color will last another week, windstorms notwithstanding."

Did someone say larches!? Get a detailed account of this group's 4-day route in Cheryl's trip report

Youth Club Hike - Eunice Lake & Tolmie Peak Lookout - 10/3

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"Our first activity for the Olympia Explorers was a hike up to Tolmie Peak Lookout Tower. We had six excited Explorers ranging in age from 9-11 and their parents."

It sounded a wee bit wet and chilly, but the Olympia Explorers didn't mind. They found their enjoyment anyway. Tag along on their first outing this season to explore the Tolmie Peak Lookout Tower. Happy adventuring! 

Alpine Scramble - Burnt Park, Palisades, Marcus Traverse - 10/9

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"A gorgeous ‘end of the season’ tour along alpine ridges and meadows connecting 4 distinct peaks: Burnt Park (Pt 6327), Palisades, Marcus, and Pt 6218 (the ridge NW of Marcus). This strenuous exploratory traverse (~5300’ gain, ~14 miles, 5 miles off trail) is a keeper, with unexpected sun/views and impending weather that held off until we arrived back at the cars."

Following this season's first significant snowfall in the mountains, the road to Sunrise at Mount Rainier along with many other roads have closed. This exploratory scramble avoids the need for Sunrise access and features some pretty sweet views. 

Crag Rock Climb - Smith Rock - 10/9 to 10/10

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"Julia was courageous enough to take the Panic Point pitch. Looking down out the mouth, the exposure was very, very spicy. It look a bit of fear managing, but this pitch is very short (albeit pumpy and greasier than a Big Mac) and soon after we found ourselves at the top."

What's more fun? Descending the Monkey with a 100ft free-hanging rappel OR grabbing delicious Thai food after a successful day of rock climbing? Okay fine, you can have both in this trip report

Day Hike - Quartz Creek & Blethen Lake - 10/16

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"This was a very nice hike with good scenery and no bugs.   Although the first half or more is a road walk, it has a forest feel. Watch for the Blethen Lake trail slightly down and to the left after the first set of switchbacks. If you come to the second set of switchbacks turning right up towards the Ark, you have just missed it."

Consider packing waterproof shoes on your next fall hike! These hikers successfully navigated some tricky river crossings and were rewarded with awesome mushroom sightings (one of which is even photographed in the trip report).


We love reading your trip reports! You can find recommendations for how to write a solid report here. Who knows, your trip may even get featured in next month's round-up. 

Lead image by Cheryl Talbert.