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Forum Index -> Trip Reports -> Tolmie LO, Howard & Florence Peaks 8.1.09.
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naturealbeing
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Post Sun Aug 02, 2009 5:34 pm    Tolmie LO, Howard & Florence Peaks 8.1.09.
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Having sprained my ankle 100 yards from the summit of Spark Plug Mtn. last Friday, I decided that Tolmie Lookout would be an easy trip to test my recovering ankle.

I hit the trail at 10:30+ and made it to the LO without any difficulties in an hour and a half. The mosquitoes were out in full force and were helping themselves to as much blood as they could consume. At any given moment there would be 10 to 20 mosquitoes on my shoulders and with a quick slap they were toast, but in another 10 seconds a new group would take up where the others left off. This would be the norm for the balance of my trip.

Having consumed as much of the surrounding views that I desired, surveying the surrounding peaks and my magic 8 ball GT map, I determined that a cross country trip over to Howard Peak was in order. I was hoping that keeping in motion would leave behind those blood suckers, surely they knew from past generations, Tolmie LO was the place to feast on the unsuspecting victims....Well not quite, they had set up a parameter that encompassed the entire friggen MRNP! Escape was futile.

I dropped down to the N from the TLO Trail and did a descending traverse to my right to catch a ridge that connected to Howard. Once at the summit I looked to the E and could see a rocky out cropping that appeared to be higher, so I dropped my pack and headed over there to investigate. Well, you know we've all been there before, once there Howard Peak appeared to be the tallest point, so back I went.

My ankle felt ok and Florence Peak was now calling for a visit. How could I turn down a peak with the name of Florence? I couldn't, so off I went. Travel was mostly on the Alki Crest Ridge, with some ups and downs, occasionally dropping down to the S slope for easier travel, some open sloping meadows and passages through forested sections. The sections that were covered with trees had plenty of broken branches scattered about to test the condition of my ankle. I wove my way up to the false summit only to realize that I needed to drop back down to connect to the final climb. The final climb was on piles of lose jumbled jagged rocks and boulders. Someone that might be inclined could probably remover half of the mass of this peak in short order.

Once on top I discovered the register from Hell! For some reason unbeknownst to me, the cap was unscrewed and the note book inside was in a damp state of decomposition. I decided to leave a map I printed of the area there in it's place and bring the register back with me in hopes of reclaiming the names of those that signed in. If successful maybe some one with an interest may volunteer to take it back up there.

On my way down I discovered that there was a series of ledges on the E side of the false summit that was easier to travel on. This would have saved some unnecessary up and distance from the route I took in from the W side.

I used the same route out as in except when I reached the S slope of point 5255 I decided to head straight to my point of departure on the TLO Trail, this took me down into the drainage for some much needed water and allowed me to cut some distance off my travel, but also meant that I had to regain some elevation. From here it was a hot, mosquitoes infested crawl up to the trail.

Boy! was I happy to be back on a nice groomed trail heading down hill. All of the ups and downs in the heat of the day while being eaten alive had tested my patience and I was ready for a relaxing drive home. There was only one more section that would have me going up hill and that was a short one. Back at the car I was glad that I packed a cooler full of beverages to nurture my thirst hungry self.



Florence Peak To Howard Peak Pano

Eunice Lake Pano
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the Zachster
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Post Sun Aug 02, 2009 7:42 pm   
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Really nice report on a side of the Mountain I have yet to investigate! Perhaps I'll wait til the skeeters go away though...sounds nasty! This sure is the summer for sprains, strains (and a broken bone or two!). Glad yours is mending well! up.gif

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"May I always be the kind of person my dog thinks I am"
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ragman and rodman
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Post Mon Aug 03, 2009 1:51 pm   
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Thanks for the beta on your trip... I was doing Fay Peak and First Mother Mtn on Saturday... and looking at and thinking about Tolmie, Howard and Florence.

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Always remember that you are unique.  Just like everybody else.
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ree
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Post Mon Aug 03, 2009 2:01 pm   
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Nice pictures! up.gif
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Tazz
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Post Mon Aug 03, 2009 8:49 pm   
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so nice to see you out and posting trs again!!!    up.gif
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naturealbeing
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Joined: 05 Dec 2004
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Location: Great Mystery
Post Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:11 pm   
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the Zachster wrote:
Really nice report on a side of the Mountain I have yet to investigate! Perhaps I'll wait til the skeeters go away though...sounds nasty! This sure is the summer for sprains, strains (and a broken bone or two!). Glad yours is mending well! up.gif

Defiantly worthy of a peek & see. I think I read somewhere that you sprained your ankle too, it seems with your recent TR's your back in the swing of things. continued health and well being to you.

ragman and rodman wrote:
Thanks for the beta on your trip... I was doing Fay Peak and First Mother Mtn on Saturday... and looking at and thinking about Tolmie, Howard and Florence.

Glad to be of service in regards to the beta.

I was considering Fay & Pleasant or Echo & Observation, but decided to play it safe with my questionable ankle. One of these days we'll cross paths. Until then enjoy your time in the great outdoors.

ree wrote:
Nice pictures! up.gif

Your welcome, glad you liked them.

tazz wrote:
so nice to see you out and posting trs again!!!    up.gif

Thanks, things have been out of balance for me and it's been a challenge to get a rhythm going between work and play. I see you've been getting out and about as well and having a fun time at it. Good for you!
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Tigerotor77W
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Post Wed Aug 05, 2009 8:43 pm   
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I last visited Sunrise in 2007, so when I went back this year, I was surprised to see more clearcuts along 410. I wasn't sure if it was just me, but it seems like from your photos that there's a lot of clearcuts going on (both along 410 and 165). I don't remember that much emptiness in 2007 when I saw the mountain from the Mowich Lake road in 2007... frown.gif
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