Forum Index > Trip Reports > Around Big Snow: Wild Goat Peak, Hardscrabble Peak, Wild Snow (5/13-14/2023)
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LukeHelgeson
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LukeHelgeson
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PostWed May 17, 2023 9:26 pm 
May 13-14, 2023 Wild Goat Peak Hardscrabble Peak Wild Snow
Route
Route
Brian and I started up the Middle Fork Road early on Saturday morning on foot and after a quick 7 miles we arrived at the Hardscrabble Lakes turn off feeling pretty good. The trail was easy to follow and by 3,400 ft I swapped my trail runners for boots as the snow became consistent. We ascended to Lower Hardscrabble Lake while taking in the views of Thompson and discussing routes up Burnt Boot Peak.
Upon arriving at Lower Hardscrabble Lake we found a significant amount of large and chunky avy debris at the inlet that we crossed on our way to the upper lake. Later we would discover a large crown below the summit that was the culprit.
Rounding Hardscrabble Lake
Rounding Hardscrabble Lake
Avy Debris at the inlet of Hardscrabble Lake
Avy Debris at the inlet of Hardscrabble Lake
Big avy crown below the summit of Big Snow
Big avy crown below the summit of Big Snow
After filling up water bottles at the upper lake for the last time before leaving for the alpine, we ascended 1,000 ft up gradual snow slopes to the summit of Hardscrabble Peak. Amazing views were had by all as we enjoyed some lunch while basking in that summit sun and cooling winds. It was wonderful to see the surrounding peaks from a new perspective and of course Big Snow was the star.
Upper Hardscrabble Lake
Upper Hardscrabble Lake
Summit of Hardscrabble Peak
Summit of Hardscrabble Peak
We followed the broad ridge running north from Hardscrabble Peak heading towards our next objective, Wild Goat Peak. Soon we reached the east face of Pt. 5904 (aka "Triangle of Doom") that due to its aspect, slope angle, and commitment was the first crux of the trip. Brian quickly lead across the slope with out any problems and found a route down into next basin east of Wild Snow. This basin felt remote and fun as we plodded along enjoying new views of Chimney Rock, Overcoat, Summit Chief, etc. It felt refreshing to experiences those unique mountain feelings again after a 10 month absence from remote peakbagging.
Descending into the next basin
Descending into the next basin
After crossing underneath too many cornices on our traverse we arrived at the final slopes to Wild Goat Peak, which was our main objective. The south ridge was steeper and more run out than expected but non-the-less Brian put in a booter for my slow ass and soon we were at the summit. No register was found.
Closing in on Wild Goat Peak
Closing in on Wild Goat Peak
Final Slopes to Wild Goat Peak
Final Slopes to Wild Goat Peak
Frozen Gold Lake
Frozen Gold Lake
The full view. Right side is the ridge we traversed under coming from Hardscrabble.
The full view. Right side is the ridge we traversed under coming from Hardscrabble.
After leaving the summit we crossed into the Gold Lake Basin via a notch in the ridge. We traversed above many cliff bands along lower angle slopes to the north ridge of Wild Snow (Pt. 6080). The summit of Wild Snow was melted out which we took advantage of as we enjoyed the beautiful early evening light on the nearby Cascade Crest Peaks.
Descending into the Gold Lake Basin
Descending into the Gold Lake Basin
Looking at Hardscrabble Peak from Wild Snow
Looking at Hardscrabble Peak from Wild Snow
Chimney Rock
Chimney Rock
Wild Goat Peak
Wild Goat Peak
Descending towards Gold Lake
Descending towards Gold Lake
Shortly after leaving the Wild Snow summit we left the high consequence terrain and reach the basin holding the much frozen Gold Lake. We followed the outlet till we ran out of energy at 8 pm and set-up camp for a surprisingly cold night, given it was to be the hottest night of the year everywhere else. Early Sunday morning we threw on frigid, wet boots and continued down the Gold Lake Outlet "Creek" (river) skirting multiple mini-canyons. Snow bridges were non-existent for the past mile and the creek was raging from the recent heat which started to make me nervous on how exactly we would cross this beast. Luckily, near our desired ridge, about 0.5 mile from Dorthy Lake, we found a sturdy log flanked by calm water and easy access from the snow bank. We crossed the frigid knee deep water and let out celebratory yelps of equal parts happiness and painful feet. After taking time to warm feet we set out up our intended ridge that ascends from Dorthy Lake to above Upper Myrtle Lake. This ridge went better than expected with an abundance of easy to follow snow slopes. At the saddle, I pulled the plug on our last peak, Little Bulger, as I was feeling pretty weak and we were running out of time. We dropped down to Mrytle Lakes and promptly found recent tracks which largely allowed us to turn off our brains on the walk out. The Dingford Creek trail was rowdy as ever. Stats 29 miles 8,300 ft Links More Pictures Day 1 GPS Day 2 GPS The planning and execution of this trip was aided by LIDAR-based slope angle shading maps that I've recently developed for the entire Alpine Lakes Wilderness. A preview of this novel map can be found here.

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Now I Fly
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Now I Fly
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PostThu May 18, 2023 6:54 am 
Looks like a fun trip! I'm a little surprised you didn't carried snowshoes, but it looks like it was the right call! That was an impressive avalanche! Must have really roared! Great photos of it! All of our late season snow has been keeping me a bit nervous of late. I saw similar slides on the NE aspect of Gaberial last weekend. Well done, and thanks for the report!!

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ozzy
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Joined: 30 Jul 2015
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Location: University place, wa
ozzy
The hard way
PostThu May 18, 2023 7:06 pm 
Bomber loop Luke!! Crazy!! I was admiring Wild Goat while we were up top, some awesome terrain y'all covered! Thanks for the insight and cheers! rocker.gif

“I don’t know what’s gonna happen, but I wanna have my kicks before the whole shithouse goes up in flames”-Mr Mojo Risin
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LukeHelgeson
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Joined: 19 May 2021
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Location: Seattle, WA
LukeHelgeson
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PostThu May 18, 2023 8:18 pm 
Quote:
Looks like a fun trip! I'm a little surprised you didn't carried snowshoes, but it looks like it was the right call!
Funny enough we brought snowshoes but never used them because the snow conditions were good enough. We definitely joked that was likely the longest walk we've taken the snowshoes on. Ugh.

Now I Fly
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