Forum Index > Trip Reports > Seven Fingered Jack, Mount Maude 9/23/17
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awilsondc
Scramblin' Fool



Joined: 03 Apr 2016
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awilsondc
Scramblin' Fool
PostMon Sep 25, 2017 10:29 pm 
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After the mid September snow had fallen, the forecast called for some clear weather over the weekend.  Jake and I made plans to bag some peaks around Leroy Basin.  Leading up to the trip, our plans changed a few times.  I wanted to hit up Carne and take the high route over to Maude.  Jake wanted Seven Fingered Jack and Maude.  I had already done 7FJ, but uncertainty over snow cover and the possibility of having difficulty route finding the Carne high route eventually ruled out that possibility.  We decided to go for 7FJ and Maude figuring that even with up to a foot of snow we'd be able to get at least one of these peaks.  I didn't mind repeating Seven Fingered Jack, as it was pretty cool the first time.  I rolled into the Phelps Creek Trailhead to meet up with Jake around 11pm for a few hours of shut eye before our 4am alarm.  By 4:40 we were on the trail by headlamp.

The first hour was pretty cruiser up the easy trail to the junction up towards Leroy Basin.  The trail gets pretty steep here and Jake later mentioned he had a "what the hell are we doing" moment hiking up the steep trail by headlamp.  As we neared the basin it grew light enough we were able to turn our headlamps off and a few minutes later we had reached Leroy Basin.

Leroy Basin - Jake eyes 7FJ
Leroy Basin - Jake eyes 7FJ
Tiny larch and Maude
Tiny larch and Maude
Jake making his way towards 7FJ
Jake making his way towards 7FJ
Fall colors
Fall colors
Larch w/ Glacier Peak
Larch w/ Glacier Peak

As we looked up towards Seven Fingered Jack we both though, what?!  Where's the snow?  Other trip reports had reported 6-8" of snow at 6000ft, but looking up we were both shocked how little snow there was.  We both agreed that if you had suggested this particular outcome to us prior to the trip, we'd have given it about a 10% chance.  None the less we were stoked and even had grand visions of descending via the Carne high route.  First up was 7FJ.  We made our way up to Upper Leroy Basin, noting a few isolated larches that had begun to turn.  Only 2-5% were showing any yellow.  As we climbed higher, Glacier Peak rose above the horizon and a few sun breaks among the near overcast skies provided for some dramatic lighting.  This particular vantage point of Glacier Peak is probably my favorite view of any of the cascade volcanoes.  I just love it, and the light made it even better!

Jake scoping out Maude
Jake scoping out Maude
Jake ascending, Glacier looming
Jake ascending, Glacier looming
Glacier Peak close up
Glacier Peak close up
Rainier
Rainier
Dramatic light on Glacier Peak
Dramatic light on Glacier Peak

At ~7500ft we started hitting patches of snow which became more continuous in the low to mid 8000's topping out at ~4" at the deepest.  Not too bad when you come expecting a foot!  We ascended a gully too early and had to cross a rib over to the standard route and eventually reached the summit ~5 hours after we started.

Ascending the gully
Ascending the gully
Reaching a saddle
Reaching a saddle
Jake working up a ramp near the summit of 7FJ
Jake working up a ramp near the summit of 7FJ
Seven Fingered Jack summit panorama
Seven Fingered Jack summit panorama
Click this photo, then click again, then drag and scroll
Click this photo, then click again, then drag and scroll

Views from the summit were incredible!  Better than I had remembered, plus the early morning light breaking through the clouds provided for some dramatic views.

The north face of Mount Maude
The north face of Mount Maude
Dome
Dome
Logan and Goode
Logan and Goode
Bonanza
Bonanza
Mountains
Mountains
Golden Horn
Golden Horn
Fernow
Fernow
Glacier Peak
Glacier Peak

We stayed only 25 minutes or so before heading down and over to Maude.  We dropped back down to Upper Leroy Basin where we filled up on water and started making our way over to Maude.  The scenery was spectacular, although I wish more larch were showing color but looks like that's a week or two away.  From Upper Leroy Basin we took the west gully of Maude and angled up towards the south ridge.  As we neared the ridge I crashed hard.  Bonked, if you will.  Despite eating plenty the whole trip I was running on fumes.  The last 1000 vertical feet to the summit was a sufferfest for me and I slowed to probably 1/3 my normal pace.  I was happy to finally reach the summit and was able to mow down on some thai fresh rolls I had brought for lunch which helped bring me back to my normal self.

Down the gully
Down the gully
Onward to Maude!
Onward to Maude!
Looking back at 7FJ
Looking back at 7FJ
Jake hiking through upper Leroy Basin, Buck in the background
Jake hiking through upper Leroy Basin, Buck in the background
Deer
Deer
Jake making his way up Maude
Jake making his way up Maude

The views from the summit weren't that great.  Clouds had really moved in blocking a lot of the distant scenery.  We didn't linger here too long.  20 some minutes on the the summit and we were heading down.  After the miserable last 1000 feet up Maude all desire to descend via the Carne high route was gone.  We decided to descend via the standard route for Maude.  We probably should have gone back down the west gully.  We lost the trail as it neared the westward angling ridge line (trail went east of the ridge, we went west of the ridge) and we ended up descending some unpleasant loose scree until we reached the basin and were able to find the trail.

Jake on the summit of Maude
Jake on the summit of Maude
Light on Fernow
Light on Fernow
Spectacle Buttes
Spectacle Buttes
Jake looking out into Ice Lakes basin
Jake looking out into Ice Lakes basin
7FJ and Maude on the way back
7FJ and Maude on the way back
Fall colors on the trail
Fall colors on the trail
Fall colors 2
Fall colors 2
Light on Seven Fingered Jack
Light on Seven Fingered Jack

The rest of the hike out was pretty uneventful.  We leapfrogged a few times with a couple trail runners who had come up the Entiat side, up to Ice Lakes (they said this portion was post burn log hopping and bushwacking for 2 1/2 miles), and were exiting via Phelps Creek TH.  On the drive out we got stuck behind a couple trucks towing horse trailers.  They were going super slow, like under 10 mph, which I get it... you're towing horses.  They refused to pull over for over 20 minutes despite several opportunities to do so until they eventually had to stop for some other reason (a guy got out to check the trailer or something) and we were able to finally get by.  An irritating end to an otherwise great day!

18 miles 8100+ ft gain, 13:37 car to car
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tmatlack
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tmatlack
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PostTue Sep 26, 2017 12:32 am 
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Scramblin',

Cool photos.  That pano with scrollin' is awesome and fun.

Tom
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Kat
Turtle Hiker



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Kat
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PostTue Sep 26, 2017 3:24 am 
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Great pics and trip!  There was still a water source in Leroy basin - ?
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awilsondc
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awilsondc
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PostTue Sep 26, 2017 5:45 am 
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Kat wrote:
There was still a water source in Leroy basin - ?

There was water in a stream a bit before Leroy Basin, I didn't see any water in lower Leroy Basin (where most people camp) but didn't look for any either.  We found water in upper Leroy Basin approximately where marked on the topo at just below 6800ft, north of the island looking mark on the topo.  Somewhere around there at least.
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mbravenboer
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mbravenboer
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PostTue Sep 26, 2017 7:25 am 
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Great photos  up.gif  The panorama is particularly nice and sharp.
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Fletcher
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Fletcher
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PostTue Sep 26, 2017 7:51 am 
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Wow, you got some spectacular shots up there!
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Rigafari
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Rigafari
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PostTue Sep 26, 2017 7:51 am 
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Every time I drive up that road I get blocked by someone who refuses to pull over!  It's a thing there
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MtnGoat
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MtnGoat
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PostTue Sep 26, 2017 8:41 am 
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Yeah it is.  When someone comes up on you, let them pass! Is it really that hard to fathom? If they caught you in the first place they'll be gone ahead of you soon enough.

Fantastic trip report. Climbed 7FJ 30+ years ago, those pics bring it all back. Great colors too.

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Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock. - Will Rogers
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ozzy
The hard way



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ozzy
The hard way
PostTue Sep 26, 2017 8:12 pm 
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Damn boys! Savages, long ass day as well, lol! Sick pics and tr. Cant blame you for crashin, 8100ft of gain, holy balls! Sounds like you finished hard. Drink a Rainier next time, its the nectar of the gods it'll give you that extra push! Lol.Cheers dudes, keep up the gnarliness! rocker.gif

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Milk is for babies. When you grow up you have to drink beer. -Arnold
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Jetlag
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Jetlag
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PostTue Sep 26, 2017 8:51 pm 
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Great TR!

As others have mentioned that pano shot is superb, with so many favorite mountains linked up.

Your zoomed shots of individual peaks are remarkably clear!

Thanks for posting!
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geyer
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geyer
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PostThu Sep 28, 2017 9:02 pm 
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I saw Jake's post on this on fb and it looks really cool. A few friends and I were originally going to hit up Ice Lakes for an overnighter this weekend, but the weather is looking pretty crappy... My friend and I are still going to go for at least Maude as a day-hike, snow be damned! Hopefully the cloud ceiling is pretty high.

Also, love the pano!
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awilsondc
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awilsondc
Scramblin' Fool
PostFri Sep 29, 2017 5:51 am 
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Thanks all!  Yeah, the slow trucks with horse trailers were pretty annoying.  To top it off,
after we pass them there's another passenger vehicle going slow that wouldn't pull over either!

Fortunately it was only about 5 minutes before we got to the passing zone.  Some people just don't have basic courtesy.  Whatever.

geyer wrote:
A few friends and I were originally going to hit up Ice Lakes for an overnighter this weekend, but the weather is looking pretty crappy... My friend and I are still going to go for at least Maude as a day-hike, snow be damned! Hopefully the cloud ceiling is pretty high.

Nice!  I think you'll have some colorful larch to keep you company at least.  I was up at Easy Pass yesterday and they're definitely starting to turn!  Have a good trip!
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goleary
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goleary
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PostFri Sep 29, 2017 12:15 pm 
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I got stuck behind a truck with a horse trailer on the way up Chiwawa Friday afternoon.  They wouldn't let us pass for the longest time until the turn off up to Phelps creek.  One of them got out and didn't seem to have a clue what was going on when I mentioned their lack of courtesy.  Don't think there was any malice involved, just lack of awareness...
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Cue
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Cue
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PostSat Sep 30, 2017 10:05 am 
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We were camped at upper Ice Lake and watching a few people descend the ridge of Maude, and likely saw you! Great weather up there that day. We also ran into those two trail runners below upper Ice Lake.

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Quinn
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silence
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silence
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PostSun Oct 01, 2017 8:21 am 
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Can't believe you did both peaks in one day ... no wonder you bonked. It took us 2 just to get to Maude. But, still an awesome fall trip with great views! Fantastic photos!  up.gif  up.gif  up.gif

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PHOTOS: https://www.flickr.com/photos/33792231@N00/sets
FILMMAKING: http://www.crestpictures.com/

Keep a good head and always carry a light bulb. Bob Dylan
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