Forum Index > Trip Reports > A Journey Into the Okanagan Range - May 11-16
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Jeff Pod.
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PostTue May 19, 2020 10:10 am 
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We decided to venture into one of the corners of the Pasayten Wilderness last week. We figured there wouldn’t be too many folks out there as Washington Pass wasn’t open yet, it was earlier in the season and the weather forecast was terrible. We were excited to explore this little area of the Pasayten that was just down the road from where we are living in Winthrop, WA.

Day 1 - 5.11.20 - Entered the Wilderness on Thirtymile Trailhead
We entered at the Thirtymile Trailhead (no other cars at the TH) and spent the day walking along the Chewuch River, turning right at the Tungsten Creek Trail and spending the night at the Tungsten Mine on snow.


Day 2 - 5.12.20 - Hike Along the Boundary Trail - Summit Apex and Wolframite Mountain
We hiked along the fairly easy to follow boundary trail in the morning. We stepped off the trail and climbed up Wolframite and Apex peaks along the way. We eventually made our way around and went up and over Cathedral Pass. We were basically walking in a storm most of the day.


Day 3 - 5.13.20 - Cathedral Peak Attempt & Summit of Amphitheater Mountain
We woke and there was a short break in the weather, so we decided we would go for Cathedral Peak. Towards the top, the rock became very icy and,at some points, dangerous to be on. We decided to bail on the peak attempt. e headed back to camp, ate some lunch and decided to go for Amphitheater Mountain. This peak was a mellow walk up around on the Southwest slope. We were glad to make it to the top of one peak for the day.


Day 4 - 5.14.20 - Hike to Four Point Lake
We walked down past Remmel Lake, taking in beautiful views of Mount Remmel along the way, eventually gaining the trail along the Chewuch River. We walked in a downpour for most of the day. We walked up the trail to a nice camp at Four Point Lake…...except that it was dumping snow for most of the evening while we were there. We told ourselves that we would give it until 10am the next morning to decide if we were going to attempt to climb Mount Remmel.


Day 5 - 5.15.20 - Mount Remmel Summit & Begin Our Hike Out
At around 9:30am we could actually see the summit from Four Point Lake and there was blue sky above us -- but still clouds swirling all around us. We decided that it was worth starting the journey towards the summit! We hung out for a while at the top and enjoyed the view while a small pocket of blue sky swirled around us.We wanted to sleep on dry ground for the night, as we had not done that the whole trip, so we packed up camp and walked 7 miles back to a nice camp at the junction of Tungsten Creek and the Chewuch River.


Day 6 - 5.16.20 - Hike Out
We had a leisurely morning and packed up and left camp around 8am. I guess we were excited about the food and news that awaited us. We enjoyed our walk out and made it out to the trailhead at about 11:30am. Some people had come in and cut some of the fallen trees down, so we were thankful for the sections of easy walking along the way. We ran into a small group of other hikers on their way in while we were on our way out. We made it back to the car, changed our shoes, drank a sparkling water and headed back towards Winthrop.

Here is a map of our trip:


What a great trip full of weather, challenge, getting lost a bit, snowshoeing, and cold toes and hands.

Check out a bit more detailed trip report and a few more photos!
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Nancyann
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PostTue May 19, 2020 12:54 pm 
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Very impressive, you two are tough! I recognize those creek crossings, Horseshoe and the Chewuch, and your last campsite, we camped there last August. You were lucky to to get a window of good weather so you could summit Remmel, what a nice reward for all your efforts!
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Jeff Pod.
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PostTue May 19, 2020 1:02 pm 
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Thanks! Yeah - those river crossings were really running. We were lucky enough to always find some logs across them....even if they were a bit exposed. Mt. Remmel was truly a beautiful summit and stands out from all around. Would love to go and hike the Boundary Trail in summer time. It is probably stunning.
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Mike Collins
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PostTue May 19, 2020 1:10 pm 
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You made the right decision to retreat from Cathedral. There is an ~2.5 ft step from one rock face onto another that you definitely want friction to be on your side when attempting. It is just before the summit.
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Jeff Pod.
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PostTue May 19, 2020 1:40 pm 
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Hey Mike. Yeah - we made it exactly to that point. We were at the "airy step" and decided against an attempt because of the conditions, how our hands and feet were feeling and general icy rock. So hard though...you can literally see the summit from that point.
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jdk610
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PostTue May 19, 2020 4:03 pm 
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Thanks for the helpful TR.  I was wondering about snow levels and conditions up the Chewuch. (We live just down the road in Mazama... hey neighbors!)
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Jeff Pod.
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PostTue May 19, 2020 4:15 pm 
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Cool! We will see you out there!
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Kim Brown
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PostTue May 19, 2020 4:27 pm 
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I love the tannin-color of the Chewuch. So - not millions of downed trees? You mention you appreciated the people logging out on your way out, but I would think it nearly impassable this early in the season and there would be more (*&^*&%^)) on conditions, yet not one single *&^!.

Not little lake to drive through on the road, just before the trail head?

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" I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there."  – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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Jeff Pod.
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PostTue May 19, 2020 4:44 pm 
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Hey Kim. Yeah - there were alot of downed trees. There wasn't too many on the way into the junction of the Tungsten Creek Trail & Chewuch River Trail. But, after the Four Point Lake junction headed towards Remmel Lake there is some big sections of blow downs. We had to walk around for a while to get around all of the blow downs in some places.

We were amazed to see some trail maintenance happening. It was only done on a little section from the Junction of Tungsten and Chewuch to Thirtymile TH. But, we were welcoming easy walking either way after walking in deep snow for days.

Yes - the lake at the TH - it was still there. We parked before it and walked to the TH. Technically, b/c of all the COVID restrictions parking at TH is not allowed. So, that actually worked out for us.
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jdk610
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PostTue May 19, 2020 4:50 pm 
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Jeff, just sent you a PM.
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gb
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PostWed May 20, 2020 8:05 am 
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Bold trip considering the weather.

You replied to Kim regarding the downed trees especially up Four Point; but could you describe the areas that are burnt or unburnt along your route?

I've only been in that area once and rock climbed on Cathedral, then went up Amphitheater and returned via Andrews Creek. I understand all of Andrews Creek was burnt a good number of years ago.
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Jeff Pod.
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PostFri May 22, 2020 12:53 pm 
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Hey gb,

The only part that was actually really burned on our loop was the section from Remmel Lake down to the Four Point Lake junction. That is at least as far as I can remember.

Everywhere else was still looking pretty alive.

Hope that helps.
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gb
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PostFri May 22, 2020 1:27 pm 
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Thanks, Jeff. That is actually pretty good news considering bad fortune regarding fires in the Pasayten the last couple decades.
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Forum Index > Trip Reports > A Journey Into the Okanagan Range - May 11-16
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