Forum Index > Trip Reports > Rotten Red Mountain at Last!  7/31/10
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KarenP
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Joined: 02 May 2010
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Location: Shoreline, WA
KarenP
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PostMon Aug 02, 2010 10:58 pm 
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Kazuyo and I had been wanting to go to the top of Red Mountain for a long time.  Red was on her short list of peaks she must do before returning to Japan.  We took the old Commonwealth Basin Trail for the first leg of the hike.
Beginning of the trail
Beginning of the trail

This trail cuts off approximately a mile from the trip and while the views are not as spectacular as the new upper Pacific Crest Trail to the Katwalk, the forest is lovely and creek crossings are fun.  The water level of the Commonwealth Creek was surprisingly low and the crossings easy.  For an "abandoned trail" it is in wonderful shape.

Old Bridge
Old Bridge
Commonwealth Creek Crossing
Commonwealth Creek Crossing
Beautiful forest
Beautiful forest
Commonwealth Creek Crossing
Commonwealth Creek Crossing
Crossing Commonwealth Creek
Crossing Commonwealth Creek

The old trail intersects with the sanctioned Commonwealth Creek Trail shortly after it splits off the new PCT.  Two miles later there is a cairn on the trail.  If you continue straight ahead, the trail takes you to Red Pond and on to Red Pass.  Turning right instead takes you straight up the side of Red Mountain.
Looking toward the top of Red Mountain
Looking toward the top of Red Mountain

Previous trip reports mention loose rock.  This is an understatement.  Red Mountain is one big rotten rock whose pieces come off in your hand while you are hanging on to it for dear life or which gives way under your feet to slide onto your unsuspecting hiking partner.  It is best to go on this hike alone or with few people unless you wear a helmet and other armour to protect you from falling, sliding, slithering rocks, boulders and dirt.
Red Mountain Trail
Red Mountain Trail
Red Pond
Red Pond
Lundin Peak is in the background.
Lundin Peak is in the background.
The path up Red Mountain
The path up Red Mountain
The summit ski area is far below.
The summit ski area is far below.

However, once you make it to the top, all is forgiven as the views are spectacular.
Red Mountain Pano 1
Red Mountain Pano 1
Red Mountan Pano 2
Red Mountan Pano 2

We relaxed and ate lunch; Kazuyo with her usual masterpiece and me with a satisfying but less spectacular roll up.
Kazuyo's Lunch
Kazuyo's Lunch

After photo session
Kaleetan is almost completely enveloped in clouds in the background.
1 label
Kaleetan is almost completely enveloped in clouds in the background.

and building a small cairn on the summit
I built this small cairn using the rocks I considered hauling down the mountain.  I am trying to break myself of the habit of taking home rocks from the tops of mountains.
I built this small cairn using the rocks I considered hauling down the mountain.  I am trying to break myself of the habit of taking home rocks from the tops of mountains.

we cautiously descended.  There was nice breeze on our descent and we were not very bothered by mosquitos.  I can imagine that usually Red Mountain is normally a vertical red "frying pan" for hikers so we were pleased that at least radiating heat was not part of our challenge.

There were a surprising number of flowers on Red Mountain.
These hardy flowers adorned crevices in the rock all over Red Mountain.
These hardy flowers adorned crevices in the rock all over Red Mountain.
Flowers on Red Mountain
Flowers on Red Mountain
Kazuyo looks at the heather in flower by the steep trail down Red Mountain.
Kazuyo looks at the heather in flower by the steep trail down Red Mountain.

Also many flowers, mostly white, along the Commonwealth Trail.
White Flowers
White Flowers
White Flowers
White Flowers

For an added bonus on our return, we took a side trail over to Commonwealth Creek Falls.  The falls were nice, but I bet earlier in the season they are spectacular.
Commonwealth Creek Falls
Commonwealth Creek Falls
Commonwealth Creek
Commonwealth Creek
Commonwealth Creek
Commonwealth Creek

We had a party to attend in North Bend, so we took showers at Ken's Truck Stop.  Felt sooo good to get the trail dust washed off.
For $10.00 one can get a nice shower at Ken's Truck Stop.
For $10.00 one can get a nice shower at Ken's Truck Stop.

Then had wonderful salmon at our friend's camp site and then on for revelry at the party.  What a great day!

For more photos:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/34457823@N04/sets/72157624635360120/
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Spotly
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Joined: 06 Jan 2004
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Location: Mead (Near Spokane)
Spotly
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PostTue Aug 03, 2010 6:33 am 
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Nice TR and excellent beta on the $10 showers! I vote for putting Kazuyo's Lunch picture on this year's calendar smile.gif  That looks so delicious and I'm not even that hungry - I can imagine how it tasted after a long hike.
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rbuzby
Attention Surplus



Joined: 24 Feb 2009
Posts: 581 | TRs | Pics

rbuzby
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PostTue Aug 03, 2010 7:05 pm 
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Nice ascent!  What a fun mountain.

In the summit pic, with the two dynamite mountain ladies, I think that is Mt. Thompson that is enveloped (shrouded even) in clouds.  With gravel lake below.

Good  pics up.gif
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KarenP
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Joined: 02 May 2010
Posts: 56 | TRs | Pics
Location: Shoreline, WA
KarenP
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PostTue Aug 03, 2010 7:29 pm 
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Whoops!   Kaleetan is to the west.   Mt. Thompson is northeast of Red Mountain.  Thanks for the correction!
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Yet
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Joined: 23 Apr 2005
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Location: Happily Ever After
Yet
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PostTue Aug 03, 2010 8:00 pm 
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Fun trip! I have to confess that I stared at Kazuyo's lunch for a few minutes.  embarassedlaugh.gif Gonna miss her gourmet photos when she goes back to Japan! She sure knows how to have a great time while she is here, though. Thanks for posting the TR, KarenP. Red Mtn is one of my favorites!  up.gif
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Magellan
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Joined: 26 Jul 2006
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Magellan
Brutally Handsome
PostTue Aug 03, 2010 8:45 pm 
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I loves me some attractive lunch.  up.gif   Nice peak-bagging too.
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Backpacker Joe
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Joined: 16 Dec 2001
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Backpacker Joe
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PostTue Aug 03, 2010 9:02 pm 
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Ya just gotta love two hot chicks on a summit!  Everything about that is just, right! hockeygrin.gif

--------------
"I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, and I won't be laid a hand on. I don't do these things to other people and I require the same from them."

óWayne's John Bernard Books in The Shootist
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Chief Joseph
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Chief Joseph
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PostWed Aug 04, 2010 12:55 am 
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+1 Joe,.....great pics and that lunch looks delicious.

I have been through quite a few truck stops but never encountered a shower/bathroom that looked that clean.

For $10.00 one can get a nice shower at Ken's Truck Stop.
For $10.00 one can get a nice shower at Ken's Truck Stop.

--------------
Go placidly amid the noise and waste, and remember what comfort there may be in owning a piece thereof.
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