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Malachai Constant
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Malachai Constant
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PostFri Aug 31, 2007 9:45 am 
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Lillian Lake
Lillian Lake
The Route Ahead
The Route Ahead
Cliffs to the Left of Us
Cliffs to the Left of Us
Peaks to the North
Peaks to the North
Alpinglow
Alpinglow
Peaks to the East
Peaks to the East
Sunset Cairn
Sunset Cairn
Frank Loyde Cairn
Frank Loyde Cairn
Sunset in Clouds
Sunset in Clouds
Big Guy to the South
Big Guy to the South
Cloudcap
Cloudcap
Rampart Lakes
Rampart Lakes

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"You do not laugh when you look at the mountains, or when you look at the sea." Lafcadio Hearn
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Joe
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PostFri Aug 31, 2007 9:58 am 
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Trip stats:  5.5 miles with 2670 feet elevation gain

A few of my photos

Lake-Lillian
Lake-Lillian
Lillian-Pano
Lillian-Pano
views
views
views2
views2
views3
views3
Rachel-Lake
Rachel-Lake
Rampart-Lakes
Rampart-Lakes
tarns-along-route
tarns-along-route
Alta
Alta
sunset-from-rampart-ridge
sunset-from-rampart-ridge

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Joe
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Mesahchie Mark
Really Useful Engine



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Mesahchie Mark
Really Useful Engine
PostFri Aug 31, 2007 10:39 am 
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Wow - I am so bummed I missed this one!  Stupid work  rant.gif
I love RR, and the weather was perfect last night.  I hear it was quite an adventure for some - looking forward to reading Yukon's TR!

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Cheers,

Mesahchie Mark
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yukon222
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PostFri Aug 31, 2007 12:12 pm 
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I had arrived at the parking area a few minutes past the target time of 5:45pm.  Just 3 rigs there but none I recognized and no TNABíers in site.  Grabbed my pack, locked the truck and decided to wait a few minutes to see if anyone else would be arriving.  I hadnít done this hike before and only had a few bits of info off the Web.  After waiting 10 minutes, I finally saw Dave (Tread Well) driving by.  Flagged him down and learned we were both IN THE WRONG SPOT!  Between his watch loaded with the GPS trail map and my Web info, we learned we had to drive back down the hill 1/2 mile and then north up a very, very brushy narrow road.  My full size Ford F250 4WD was doing some major brush cutting, as the road was only 5í wide in places and 6 1/2í most of the time.  About 1 1/2 miles of that horrible scratching sound as the branches scoured the sides of the truck, folding the side mirrors back against the body.

Made it by 6:15pm and we took off up the trail, hoping to make it to the top before the fabled 8:00pm TNAB turnaround time.  There were only 3 other vehicles at the parking area so we werenít sure how many people were ahead of us.  After jogging up the first stretch, we went at TNAB pace up the trail as it climbed to the area next to Lake Laura.  I had pulled a little ahead of Dave by this point.  Remembering the map I had printed off, I was going to go by the right side of the lake and then up 500í vertical or so to Lake Lillian.  Followed fresh tracks on the trail down to the edge of Lake Laura where the trail petered out.  Little bit of a trail on the north side, leading up to some cliffs and what appeared to be a steep but doable heather/rock ramp.

Pushing thru Devilís club, ferns, heather, blueberry bushes and who knows what else, I get into the open again above the lake.  Looks like recent brush tromping farther up the steep hillside, even making switchbacks as it went.  I foolishly follow, thinking that this is extreme even for TNAB standards.  Hard to imagine the rest of the group ahead of us went this way.  But if I turn around now, there is no way Iíll be able to backtrack, find where I went wrong and get up to the 5700í summit by 8:00pm.

Short, slippery heather makes the way difficult to the base of the rock cliffs.  What appeared to be not too difficult terrain from below, takes on a completely different aspect up close.  60į rock face with a chimney on one side.  It looks like if I could get up 15í or so, the grade lessens and I could continue upward.  Still canít see the top of the ridge as Iím only up 1/4 of the way.  I grab a couple of handholds and start struggling up the chimney.  Backpack is smashed back into the rock as I search for just a couple of decent hand or foot placements.  Tricky move to roll left across the open face with only a few 1/2Ē high fingertip holds and little else.  Only problem is my left foot was still hurting from the rock crushing at Snowy Lakes 12 days earlier http://www.nwhikers.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=7960825&start=30 and Iíll have to place it on a small rock bump on the face, then power up from there.  Yeoowww!!  Boy did that hurt as the toes bent more than they wanted too!

Laying on the 60į rock face with my right kneecap imbedded in a recess in the rock (worked great although I thought it might sheer off and come ripping right out thru my skin), I crawl and claw my way farther up the mountain.  The line eases a bit until I see the next band of rock cliffs. There is a steep rock/compacted pine needle ramp leading to what appears to be an open hillside that should carry up to Lake Lillian.  Dave is nowhere in site far below and I hope he has found the correct path.  There is no way this is; but Iím on a TNAB mission now.  Another narrow slot offers decent grip but runs out too quickly.  Need to go out on to the steep face with very few rocks to grab.  I ease my way out and try to latch on to a small rock projecting thru the hard duff.  Canít quite reach it and I start slipping backwards down the slope.  Both feet churning now into the face and fingers trying to gouge their way into anything to stop the slide.  Rocks are broken out from my feet and tumble down the slope.  After several seconds going downhill, the feet finally jam against firm rock.

Moved back up to the key point and tried again.  This time the hillside holds beneath one foot as I traverse over to some nice handholds and trees.   
Above Lk Laura cliffs
Above Lk Laura cliffs

Covered in dirt with 20 scratches on my legs from the lower bushwacking, I finally crest the ridge to gaze at Lake Lillian.  Itís taken quite awhile to climb the face and time is running out.  I can see the trail, yes the real trail, on the far side of the lake.  As I approach it, Dave is just entering the lake basin!  He had made the same mistake down to Lake Laura but realized the trail should be a 100 yards or so to the east of the lake.  He backtracked and went up the real trail, avoiding the cliff climb.

After ascending the next ridge above the lake, views open up and we can see what we think is the objective.  Still no people in site and darkness is starting to fall.  Wind past several small tarns, then Dave spots movement on a high ridge a few hundred yards east of our line.  We continue to go as fast as we can thru unfamiliar territory.  Finally catch up to Joe near the base of the summit who had veered over to the east ridge because had spotted someone there.  The three of us finally reach the top at 7:53pm where MC greets us.  Only 4 TNABíers on this journey Ė MC, Joe, Tread Well and Yukon222.  The view down to the Rampart Lakes was special with fading light casting shadows across the surface.
Rampart Lakes again
Rampart Lakes again
Rampart Lakes
Rampart Lakes
rampart lakes pano
rampart lakes pano

A quick celebratory Yukon and the descent began around 8:10pm.  Darkness came quickly and headlamps were needed to navigate back thru the tarns.  A few slips and stumbles on the way down but we arrived safely back at the vehicles at 9:40pm.  Perhaps a little worse for the wear, but good memories nonetheless.
cairn & rainier at Rampart edge
cairn & rainier at Rampart edge
Summit shot
1 label
Summit shot
Tread Well patting Rainier
Tread Well patting Rainier
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Joe
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Joe
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PostFri Aug 31, 2007 12:36 pm 
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Near the tarns I veered right and followed a trail to a 5600 ft. high point.   This spot had good views of Rachel lake.   I waited around for a while, looking for any TNABers.  I finally spotted MC to the west on pt. 5870.  I traversed the ridge west, until I hit some cliffs above the notch leading to rampart lakes.  Scouting around a find a way down to the trail below, where I meet yukon222 and tread well coming up from the tarns.

My GPS track for the trip.

Rampart-Ridge-Route
Rampart-Ridge-Route

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Joe
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Sore Feet
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Sore Feet
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PostFri Aug 31, 2007 4:46 pm 
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So I take it this means the road is all-too passable despite what the FS has claimed?  guns.gif

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Bryan Swan
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Waterfalls - www.waterfallsnorthwest.com
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Joe
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PostFri Aug 31, 2007 5:02 pm 
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Sore Feet wrote:
So I take it this means the road is all-too passable despite what the FS has claimed?

The wash out area is passable for now - one lane width.  One more good winter storm may close the road.

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Joe
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Magellan
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Magellan
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PostSun Sep 02, 2007 4:16 pm 
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Wow!  Sorry I missed this one.  Sort of.  huh.gif
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Yet
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PostMon Sep 03, 2007 11:09 pm 
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yukon222 wrote:
Pushing thru Devilís club, ferns, heather, blueberry bushes and who knows what else, I get into the open again above the lake.† Looks like recent brush tromping farther up the steep hillside, even making switchbacks as it went.† I foolishly follow, thinking that this is extreme even for TNAB standards.† Hard to imagine the rest of the group ahead of us went this way. ...

Short, slippery heather makes the way difficult to the base of the rock cliffs....

There is no way this is; but Iím on a TNAB mission now....

Etc, blah, etc!

Oh, I know what you are trying to do. You just want to make the rest of us who missed this great adventure feel better by making it sound as scary as possible. Not working. I'm really sad I missed it. frown.gif

Even sadder that my last TNAB for the year was Avalanche Mtn and there is to be no more. But so so glad that I made it to the 21 that I did make. Love TNAB, always will.

Excellent TR, yukon! I have bruises just from reading it. I hope your foot is ok!
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Mark Griffith
(Embrace yourself)



Joined: 14 Mar 2005
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Mark Griffith
(Embrace yourself)
PostTue Sep 04, 2007 9:11 pm 
My Tromp up Rampart
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I often can't go on TNAB, well often is an understatement, I've only been on one, the winter Solstice on Si last year. Anyway, I'll often go on the same hikes during the day on the weekend after or before. I headed out to Rampart Ridge Monday morning Labor Day. I'll reply to this thread with some observations and a few pics.

yukon222 wrote:
.....  I hadnít done this hike before and only had a few bits of info off the Web.  After waiting 10 minutes, I finally saw Dave (Tread Well) driving by.  Flagged him down and learned we were both IN THE WRONG SPOT!  Between his watch loaded with the GPS trail map and my Web info, we learned we had to drive back down the hill 1/2 mile and then north up a very, very brushy narrow road. ......

I wasn't sure where I was going either, I printed off some directions from this site (can't find them now) and I ended up miscounting left turns and ended up way over on the ridge above east end of Lake Keecheuls, but I got to see a beautiful sunrise over Rainier. I ended up back tracking several times and wandering all over before I retraced my steps completely, counted to two correctly and took the correct left hand turn : 90 minutes later!  Here are the directions for future reference :


* Going East on I-90
* Take exit 54 and turn left (North), and go under the freeway.
* Turn Right on the frontage road heading East adjacent to I-90
* Pass the trailhead for Gold Creek, and keep driving
* 2.4 miles the pavement ends and dirt road begins
* 3.8 from I-90 (1.4 on dirt) Turn Left. This is on the second big switch back and its the second left (the first left is more overgrown and hard to miss) If you come to a trailhead parking sign for Lake Margarett you've gone too far
* There is a washout on this road that is down to a single lane, who knows if it'll make another winter
* 5.1 miles from I-90 (2.7 on dirt) take the first left, this will switch back up the ridge (its a rocky road) to the top another 2.4 miles.

If you want to get to Lake Laura and Lake Lillian don't take the last left, go to the next turn in the road.

Google Map of the route as well.

So I ended up going up a completely different ridge than the one you guys did, though I was just happy to be hiking after 90 minutes of driving around and there was a high ridge to scramble up on to.

yukon222 wrote:

... Remembering the map I had printed off, I was going to go by the right side of the lake and then up 500í vertical or so to Lake Lillian.  Followed fresh tracks on the trail down to the edge of Lake Laura where the trail petered out.  Little bit of a trail on the north side, leading up to some cliffs and what appeared to be a steep but doable heather/rock ramp....

I am curious what the correct route is though?

Here is a photo that shows the Lakes from above, what is the "correct" trail?

yukon222 wrote:


...Pushing thru Devilís club, ferns, heather, blueberry bushes and who knows what else, I get into the open again above the lake.  Looks like recent brush tromping farther up the steep hillside, even making switchbacks as it went.  I foolishly follow, thinking that this is extreme even for TNAB standards.......

......What appeared to be not too difficult terrain from below, takes on a completely different aspect up close.  60į rock face with a chimney on one side.  It looks like if I could get up 15í or so, the grade lessens and I could continue upward.  Still canít see the top of the ridge as Iím only up 1/4 of the way.  I grab a couple of handholds and start struggling up the chimney.  Backpack is smashed back into the rock as I search for just a couple of decent hand or foot placements....... 

I ended up doing a very similar thing in getting to the top of the ridge I scrambled to, I headed straight up instead of making my way around. The "easy" or normal trail (boot path really) actual continued along the ridge line below these cliffs up a much larger and not as steep bowl and then you can scramble up around the backside. I went up this chute, figuring if grass and trees could grow there I could make it up. I had to stop a couple of times and shake the nerves off. When I finally reached the trees near the top, I actually had to take my backpack off, and shove it and my camera up ahead of me and then push myself through a very narrow opening beneath some branches and the dirt up and out through a vegetation womb. After that it was a scant 10 feet to the top. I came down the easy way.

Here are some photos.

The First Ridge
The First Ridge
The sister lakes Laura and Lillian below the Rampart Ridge basin.
The sister lakes Laura and Lillian below the Rampart Ridge basin.
Lake Laura the first lake if you scramble up from Rocky Road to Rampart Ridge.
Lake Laura the first lake if you scramble up from Rocky Road to Rampart Ridge.
Actually I set the camera on timer to get a self portrait on top and it was set for 5 seconds instead of 10 seconds like I thought.
Actually I set the camera on timer to get a self portrait on top and it was set for 5 seconds instead of 10 seconds like I thought.
When I was lost
When I was lost
As seen from the logging roads above I-90, past Gold Creek off of exit 54.  View On Black
As seen from the logging roads above I-90, past Gold Creek off of exit 54.  View On Black
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yukon222
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yukon222
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PostTue Sep 04, 2007 9:59 pm 
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mbgriffi, here is the correct route from one of the other TNAB'ers.  http://www.metatropo.com/tnab/tnab_rampartridge_gps_track_waypoints.htm  As you mentioned, once you are on the really brushy road for a mile or so and come to the fork, go right if you want to take the "main" trail.  Parking area on a broad right hand turn and the trail is directly to the north of you.

Your picture of Laura and Lillian Lakes perfectly shows the cliff face I went up.   eek.gif I knew it was very steep but this side view.....  I'm really glad I found a route up thru and didn't have to try and downclimb it.  I went up thru the large green patch below the cliffs, left of the white log laying across the hill, then straight up in that somewhat concealed slot just east of the larger slot.  Popped out along the middle of the South side of the lake.  Thanks much for the picture - brings back the memories of that night for sure!

The correct trail is to switchback up thru the trees on the far side of the lakes, just popping over the ridge to Lillian at the SE corner.  You want to turn right about 100 yards before the trail goes to the lake.  You then go around the east side of the Lake Lillian and ridge walk up from there to the 5800' high point above the Rampart Lakes.
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Tom
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PostTue Sep 04, 2007 10:11 pm 
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Quote:
I am curious what the correct route is though?

OK, maybe I'm missing something.  Joe also posted a GPS track just a few posts above.  Hope the McMillan Creek venture works out well.  You're starting to worry me. stun.gif
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Mark Griffith
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Mark Griffith
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PostTue Sep 04, 2007 10:28 pm 
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Thanks Yukon222 for your helpful and friendly response.

Tom wrote:
Quote:
I am curious what the correct route is though?

OK, maybe I'm missing something.  Joe also posted a GPS track just a few posts above.  Hope the McMillan Creek venture works out well.  You're starting to worry me. stun.gif

Tom, you seem to belong to Becky school of description, the "obvious" route. smile.gif  Joe only noted that this was his track route, not that it was correct. Geesh.
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Tom
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PostTue Sep 04, 2007 10:51 pm 
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OK, sorry, it just surprised me that after looking at the route from above it wasn't obvious.
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Mark Griffith
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Mark Griffith
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PostWed Sep 12, 2007 6:59 pm 
Up to Rampart in the Early AM
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After my trip attempting to get up to Rampart on Labor Day where I actually didn't get to the trail head but went up to the top of Rocky Ridge and then scrambled to the ridge to the south west of Lake Laura and Lillian, I went back up this morning early to try the correct trail head up to the Lakes.

This gave me a bit better perspective on what ykon222 did. wink.gif

yukon222 wrote:
.... we went at TNAB pace up the trail as it climbed to the area next to Lake Laura.  I had pulled a little ahead of Dave by this point.  Remembering the map I had printed off, I was going to go by the right side of the lake and then up 500í vertical or so to Lake Lillian.

Followed fresh tracks on the trail down to the edge of Lake Laura where the trail petered out.  Little bit of a trail on the north side, leading up to some cliffs and what appeared to be a steep but doable heather/rock ramp.


So the trail up to Lake Laura comes to a split. If you go left you go down to the lake, if you go right you head on up to Lake Lillian.  So you must have gone left down to Lake Laura and then you just went straight up the cliff?

The Ridge Above Laura
The Ridge Above Laura

Wow.  I was surprised the trail was so obvious up to Lillian, but glad at the same time to not have to bushwhack up through thorns. .....

yukon222 wrote:

...crest the ridge to gaze at Lake Lillian.  Itís taken quite awhile to climb the face and time is running out.  I can see the trail, yes the real trail, on the far side of the lake.  ....

After ascending the next ridge above the lake, views open up and we can see what we think is the objective.  Still no people in site and darkness is starting to fall.  Wind past several small tarns, then Dave spots movement on a high ridge a few hundred yards east of our line.  We continue to go as fast as we can thru unfamiliar territory.  Finally catch up to Joe near the base of the summit who had veered over to the east ridge because had spotted someone there.  ......

I think this is where I got confused at Lake Lillian. Instead of crossing around to the opposite (north side) I went up the gully to the east of the lake as seen here :

View from the east ridge above Lake Lillian with the alpenglow reflection in the water.
View from the east ridge above Lake Lillian with the alpenglow reflection in the water.

And then I went on up to the highest point on the east ridge. I found a funny little summit register in an orange plastic can. Piece of paper noting peak 5760 (or something like that) only one signature in it from Fay someone or other in Dec of 2005. I was around this area :

http://www.topozone.com/map.asp?lat=47.40621&lon=-121.33031&size=l&u=4&datum=nad27&layer=DRG

I should have followed the ridge above Laura to the west and then through the tarns to Rampart Ridge.....

Well there is always another reason to go back.

Full set on Flickr.
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