Joined: 15 Mar 2010
Posts: 725 | TRs
Location: Duvall, WA
|Last time me and Cookie I walked the Smithbrook road was all the way back on December 1st, 2018. At that time the road walk ended up dangerous for us due to many snowmobilers overtaking us at fast speeds. But the recent trip report from awilsondc http://www.nwhikers.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=8033595 indicated no motorized transport on the road and I immediately remembered of one more peak up there I wanted to visit!
As the name indicates, Nason Ridge Peak #1 is the first bump on the Nason Ridge. Over the years me and Cookie stood on every single bump along the Nason Ridge, except the very first one.
Back on February 10th 2018 me and Cookie snowshoed up what I at that point referred as Jelly peak, but looking at the caltopo map my route actually passed via Nason Ridge Peaks #3 and #2: http://www.nwhikers.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=8026526
I snowshoed to Rock and South Rock mountains twice, once back on November 13th 2010 before Cookie was born, and once more with Cookie on April 9th 2016. Unfortunately the name like Rock mountain makes it really hard to find if I ever posted trip reports for it.
Mastiff and Howard is a great summer loop me and Cookie enjoyed on July 14th 2019: http://www.nwhikers.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=8030051
We also visited Round Mountain, Alpine Lookout and Subalpine Peaks on November 10th 2019: http://www.nwhikers.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=8030870
With Nason Ridge Peak #1 Cookie now put her little paws on every single named peak along Nason Ridge. Kind of sad really, but thankfully there are still many other ridges to collect.
Nason Ridge #1 is probably the most boring of them, but it is not horrible. The road was icy and easy to walk on even without snowshoes and even though Smithbrook pullout on hwy 2 had quite a few cars, we didn't see any person on our route. No snowmobiles this time either! I think the key is timing, plowing of hwy 2 created a wall that makes it pretty hard for anyone to get a snowmobile to the Smithbrook road now.
Soon we found a big avalanche path that destroyed some trees and used it to cut the long swithchback on the road. From there we walked very short time to a small lake and from there it is just an easy steep ridge walk to the top of Nason Peak #1.
The peak itself has trees, but going down from it east on Nason ridge has really nice views to all directions. There are some huge cornices and cliffs on the ridge though. We walked more along the ridge and enjoyed the views. We bypassed several cliffbands traversing on steep snow. After that we climbed back on the ridge and continued in the direction of the peak #3. It gets very steep and clifffy. Just a bit lower the next band we traversed under more steep cliffs and soon found a nice ridge to go all the way down to the Nason Creek. This completely avoids any road walk and makes a very nice loop. The forest there is very nice, open with really big trees.
We also found a very huge (old) avalanche at the bottom that destroyed many big trees!