Joined: 06 May 2007 Posts: 174 | TRs | Pics Location: The highest point in front of my PC
Sun Jan 20, 2008 10:20 pm
Little St. Helens, 1/20/2008
Dave C and I snowshoed up "LittleSt. Helens" today, a 4582 ft blob of a peak on the south side of I-90 south of Bandera and west of Humpback Mtn. Thanks to the low snow levels we had to park at the Tinkham Creek interchange and walk an extra couple of miles just to get to the trestle where the John Wayne Trail passes over Hansen creek, a point where one can usually drive to this time of year.
We continued on the Hansen Creek road to about the 3500 ft elevation and then just trudged straight uphill to the summit. Had we had any brains we would have brought skis and enjoyed a nice glide back down, but lacking brains (and skis) we opted to make a loop trip out of it and snowshoe over the NE summit and straight back to the trestle. That's the ascent route suggested by Kloke in his "Winter Climbs" book, but the north slope was mostly a maze of tightly-spaced second growth trees, laden with snow to dump down your neck. We dropped down to the west end of the trestle, crossed over Hansen creek, and took the spur trail down to the Hansen Creek road. Can't say I recommend that route. Next time I go up there it'll be with skis. Or just drive up the thing in the summer; but what'd be the fun in that?
Well, it sort of looks like St. Helens, right?
Iron man Dave breaking trail:
LittleSt. Helens summit:
Descent route from trestle:
I've always called that peak Baldy because of its clearcut summit.The skiing can be good up the Hansen Creek road. There are lots of spur roads and clearcuts to explore. At a pass just south of the summit, the main branch of the Hansen Ck road enters the Seattle watershed. If you don't mind being a scofflaw, you can ski that road almost to the summit of LMSH aka Baldy. This is a good area for spring skiing. By March (In a normal year) you can drive to a spot near the Iron Horse trail, making for a shorter ski trip.
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