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Bluebird
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PostMon Oct 28, 2019 8:37 am 
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The weather was looking amazing for Sunday the 27th, both Jake and Colin were interested in a summit and we settled upon Snowking as our destination. I've wanted to go to this area ever since reading about Kindy Ridge in an old Ira Spring guidebook I found at a thrift store in the 1990's.

The last 1/2 mile of the road is definitely for high clearance only, it has some deep dips and the 4-runner scraped a little on one of them (both in and out). There's enough space for a couple cars before the first deep dip if you want to park and walk the last bit of road.

We started off from the trailhead at 2:30am, walking the old roadbed in about an hour. It is just under 3 miles, brushy in places and quite pleasant in others. There are a couple of washouts that weren't difficult to navigate and a bridge that has seen better days about 1/2 way through the roadwalk. It's seriously slanted downward, but you can walk on it. Once it collapses it'll be interesting... (photo taken on the hike out, when it was light outside)

It was only 3:30am when we reached the start of the Kindy Ridge trail, which is pretty obvious and at a wide spot in the road with a fire pit. Plenty of space to camp here too, and water nearby. We took a snack break, drank some water and headed up the VERY STEEP trail gains about 2500 feet in the first 1.5 miles. Although reports state that this trail is dry, we did cross minor water a couple of times, and were next to a creek that wasn't too accessible some of the time. This is probably because it's nearly November and not summer. Some of the trail was very moist and slippery too. We hit intermittent snow and ice around 4000 elevation, which made navigation interesting, especially in around the major blowdown where the trail braids, & in the dark but between the 3 pairs of expert navigator eyes we managed to stay on track.  We were making good time considering the conditions and pitch darkness so at the top of the steep uphill we took another snack/water break where Jake and I put on our mountaineering boots.

We continued up along the ridge trail, which goes down somewhat before ascending to the kinda dismal saddle and then ascending to Point 5791 right as the sum was rising, and giving us our first view of Snowking The last bit of gain to the point is really interesting with a slot canyon of significant depth. (photo taken on the hike out when there was light outside)
We crossed over the canyon near the top-- a jump for the guys and a careful sketchy climb across an icy rock stuck in the canyon for me.

We climbed carefully down from point 5791 (steep terrain here!) and then along the ridge. We reached the tarn along the ridge above Cyclone Lake and opted to stop postholing by putting on our snowshoes. The hardpacked/icy snow was good snowshoeing, at times we were front pointed in the snowshoes.

At the top of the ridgeline on a rocky point, we ditched our snowshoes and got out ice axes. It was a steep mixed climb to the summit and I wished I had my crampons on when only my toes kicked in on a section with a very bad runout. But it was over quickly and we enjoyed a long summit visit, admiring how you can see almost all of the coolest mountains from Snowking.  biggrin.gif Took us just under 8 hours including all our breaks and gear transitions.

But, we had a long way to go and the guys had to be to work early on Monday so we reluctantly left the summit, wearing crampons this time until the tarn. Our knees weren't too happy with the last 5k feet of descent, but that's how it is as your knees get older


Total trip distance per my Suunto 5 watch: 18 miles, 8100 gain/loss. Took us 14.75 hours car to car
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Backpacker Joe
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Joined: 16 Dec 2001
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PostMon Oct 28, 2019 10:09 am 
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Wonderful trip and pics.  Never get tired of that area.  Thanks.

--------------
"If destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen we must live through all time or die by suicide."

Abraham Lincoln
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Michael Lewis
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Joined: 27 Apr 2009
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Taking a nap
PostMon Oct 28, 2019 10:33 am 
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Nice! up.gif That bridge is looking rolly now. I gotta go back there... thanks for sharing
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neek
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PostMon Oct 28, 2019 10:34 am 
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Nice effort!  And Jake did this just 12 hours after destroying me on a bike ride...
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mosey
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PostMon Oct 28, 2019 12:38 pm 
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Great TR! I've had my eye on this
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puzzlr
Mid Fork Rocks



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PostMon Oct 28, 2019 3:44 pm 
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Way to get this one done. It's an unexpected season for it.

Bluebird wrote:

Great technique shot

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Mid Fork Rocks flickr
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rbuzby
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PostWed Oct 30, 2019 8:07 am 
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Nice pics.


I thought that was a tough climb for a 2 day trip, before the road washed out.  I guess it wasn't.

Can't beat the summit of Snowking.  I don't know of any other place you can see 7 lakes in one glance. Like you can when you look over toward El Dorado from there.
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Bluebird
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PostTue Nov 05, 2019 7:57 pm 
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Thanks to all for commenting. It is so wonderful up there I'm already planning to go back and visit all the lakes... after all, I'm a lakebagger at heart <3
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olderthanIusedtobe
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PostTue Nov 05, 2019 9:18 pm 
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Bluebird wrote:
Thanks to all for commenting. It is so wonderful up there I'm already planning to go back and visit all the lakes... after all, I'm a lakebagger at heart <3

Peakbagging just gives you a good overview of lakebagging objectives.
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Brushbuffalo
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PostWed Nov 06, 2019 9:28 pm 
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Ambitious one-dayer in summer,  quite burly  in short daylight season!

Bluebird wrote:
The last bit of gain to the point is really interesting with a slot canyon of significant depth.

That gap is an interesting geologic feature. I think it is a large joint ( crack, like a fault but without differential movement on opposite sides). I was too preoccupied with the long ridge and its many ups and downs to give it a better examination, but is shows clearly on Google Earth. It is one of a pair of parallel twins on that part of Kindy Ridge. #googleearth https://earth.app.goo.gl/vvjvkm

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Passing rocks and trees like they were standing still
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Forum Index > Trip Reports > Snowking CTC 10-27-2019
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