Forum Index > Trip Reports > Bacon Peak via Bacon Creek ~ 5-19-19
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Fletcher
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Fletcher
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PostMon May 20, 2019 11:37 am 
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Dave and I brought home the bacon yesterday. What a route and what a day! I'm embarrassed to admit that this was my third attempt on this route in as many months.. but third time was a charm.


Quick route info:
1. Take Bacon Creek Road to where it crosses Bacon Creek and take spur 1064 to first fork, either park here (1000 ft) or take a right and drive to turnaround at next switchback (1200 ft), road is not driveable beyond this point.

2. Hike dilapidated spur 1064 for a few hundred yards until you reach some orange flagging, turn right here and begin shwack

3. follow path of least resistance 2600 ft uphill to ridge, take ridge to Pt 4800

4. drop 500 ft into obvious basin to the west, ascend obvious snow gully to 6000 ft and "Diobsud Creek Glacier"

5. Ascend easy glacier and moderate snow slopes to Bacon Peak summit

Dave and I met up at the usual Ash Way park and ride at 4am and I was running off of the usual 2.5 hours of sleep. We would have made better time to the trailhead had I not stupidly cruised by the turnoff for highway 530. By 6:45 am, we were geared up and moving.

starting out
starting out

By 7am we left the road and began rapidly gaining elevation uphill. Having gained familiarity with this route on previous attempts, we made good time on the shwack. It is not too bad in North Cascades standards, although there are unpleasant sections. It took us 3.5 hours at a steady pace to reach Pt 4800 where we took a break.
start of the shwack
start of the shwack
first view of Electric Butte
first view of Electric Butte
first views of Despair and Triumph
first views of Despair and Triumph

On my past two previous attempts (one in March and one 2 weeks ago) we'd been spooked from proceeding beyond Pt 4800 because the basin below is the funneling point for a huge amount of avalanche generating terrain on Electric Butte above. Back in March we reached Pt 4800 only to witness dozens of slides coming down on our route ahead. 2 weeks ago we reached Pt 4800 to see said basin riddled with debris from numerous climax slides. With warming temps and a lot of cornices holding on above, we decided against proceeding. Yesterday, we felt good about it and decided to move through the line of fire quickly.

There is one section of steep snow dropping down into the basin that we had to down-climb. Travel through the basin was challenging due to all of the spring avalanche debris.
basin
basin
debris
debris

We cruised through the basin and made a right up the obvious snow filled gully. Snow conditions in the gully were ideal for kicking steps. We made good time gaining back our lost elevation, avoiding a few deep moats that gave minor pucker effect.
Dave climbing the gully
Dave climbing the gully

Upon reaching 6000 ft, we found a dried out rock outcropping to stop and take a break. We were both relieved to be out of potential slide paths and got our first view of our peak which did not look too far away.
there she is
there she is
pleasant travel ahead
pleasant travel ahead
Electric and Logger Buttes
Electric and Logger Buttes

We put on snowshoes here and continued on a short distance to the Diobsud Creek Glacier. Travel across the flat section of the glacier was very enjoyable before our final summit slog began. Views were opening up and were incredible.
glacier ahead
glacier ahead
Dave getting it
Dave getting it
what a place
what a place

The final 700 ft or so to the summit were tiring. We'd both already put in a lot of work to get to this point. The views kept us chugging along.
Southern Pickets
Southern Pickets
Northern Pickets
Northern Pickets
Blum
Blum
Bear and Redoubt
Bear and Redoubt

We topped out at exactly 2:00. The 2500 ft of prominence underfoot excited me in a strange but familiar way. We decided to take an hour break up there to take it all in. I think Bacon has some of the best North Cascades views I have ever had the pleasure to enjoy.
summitshot
summitshot
Baker
Baker
hey babe
hey babe
Shuksan
Shuksan
too many peaks to name
too many peaks to name
in every direction
in every direction

We left the summit at 3:00 and made excellent time back down to the basin below Electric Butte. It only took us an hour.
Dave leaving the summit
Dave leaving the summit
south peak
south peak
descending with views
descending with views
Triumph, Thornton, Jack, and Crater
Triumph, Thornton, Jack, and Crater
Blum again
Blum again
our tracks and incoming clouds
our tracks and incoming clouds
incoming weather on Glacier Peak
incoming weather on Glacier Peak
quick descent
quick descent
quick descent
quick descent
passing back through the avalanche funnel
passing back through the avalanche funnel

Gaining the 500 ft back up to Pt 4800 was tiresome. From there, other than a few minor bumps on the ridge, it was all downhill to the car. The crux of the day was the shwack down from the ridge. We were both exhausted and steep downhill bushwacking took its toll on our patience. We stumbled onto the road just after 7pm, relieved. 15 minutes later, we arrived at the car, stoked our our success.
interesting melt patterns
interesting melt patterns
some of the pleasant terrain on the deproach
some of the pleasant terrain on the deproach
whats this?
whats this?
a welcome sight
a welcome sight
thankful that these guys were able to take me to the top of Bacon Peak
thankful that these guys were able to take me to the top of Bacon Peak

~15 miles
~8000 ft of cumulative gain
~12.5 hours car to car
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Gimpilator
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PostMon May 20, 2019 11:44 am 
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Very few reports for this peak.  Thanks.   up.gif

Give those dogs a break!

--------------
https://www.youtube.com/c/Zogador
https://www.summitpost.org/users/gimpilator/25744
http://www.peakbagger.com/climber/ClimbListC.aspx?cid=2650&sort=elevft&u=ft&j=-1&y=9999

Keep climbing mountains and don't slip!
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wade63
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Joined: 21 Jun 2018
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Location: Orcas Island
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PostMon May 20, 2019 11:59 am 
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Thanks for the report. We're planning a trip into berdeen and Green Lake. I've tried to get in there a few times one trip up Bacon Creek bushwhack hell and last year circumventing Mount Watson ran into bad weather. We're shooting for Mid August and this time we'll try heading up the ridge on the bacon Creek Side I think.
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Michael Lewis
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Joined: 27 Apr 2009
Posts: 590 | TRs
Location: Lynnwood, WA (for now)
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Taking a nap
PostMon May 20, 2019 12:01 pm 
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Quote:
Give those dogs a break!

lol.gif

I second that

I keep thinking about this route so I'm glad to see there's interest in it.
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rstoddard24
BBQWingz



Joined: 30 Dec 2016
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PostMon May 20, 2019 1:03 pm 
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thanks for the report. we were considering for this coming weekend if conditions are good, and your TR is very timely and helpful!

also for your "what's this" photo..my sister says "thats dogwood - duh!"
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Fletcher
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PostTue May 21, 2019 11:21 am 
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*bump for video addition

Id be curious to hear from anyone else who has done this route. Obviously someone has been up there in the last few years, evidenced by the flagged route that we followed. The flagging gives you a good idea of where to leave the road, but after that, pick your poison and follow the path of least resistance. The flags don't always lead you to the best route.
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Brushbuffalo
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Location: there earlier, here now, somewhere later... Bellingham in between
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PostMon May 27, 2019 12:34 pm 
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Fletcher wrote:
The flags don't always lead you to the best route.

Ain't it the truth?  Same goes for cairns on alpine routes...sometimes.
But the worst are blazes....only total greenhorns or idiots ever make blazes.

--------------
Passing rocks and trees like they were standing still
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Mike Collins
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PostThu Jul 30, 2020 7:17 am 
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Fletcher wrote:
whats this?
whats this?

Cornus nuttallii or Pacific Dogwood. It is in the same genus as the lowly 4" tall bunchberry plant. I happened upon your trip report while researching a climb of Bacon Peak. I was atop Watson Peak yesterday and bonded with Bacon Peak.
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cascadetraverser
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PostMon Aug 03, 2020 12:17 pm 
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What a great alternative to the above the Diobsud brush thrash approach.  Yet another great report from you Fletcher....
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Forum Index > Trip Reports > Bacon Peak via Bacon Creek ~ 5-19-19
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