Barring some freak 10-foot snow-melting heat wave in the next week, we've officially selected a backup hike to replace our Wonderland trip.
We considered two hikes in the Pasayten Wilderness area: Eastern Pasayten Loop and Larch Pass/Hidden Lakes.
The Eastern Pasayten Loop is it. It's a 65 mile loop that covers what appears to be some spectacular terrain.
Nigel called the local ranger station to get some trail updates. Here is what we learned:
– Currently a trail crew is working on clearing the trail and is moving from the East Fork moving West
– Start of trail #510 still has trees down and standing water in the parking area. They plan on opening the trail head by the end of this week .
– Fire Creek burned out in 2003 and is still a big mess – she said to avoid it since it has not been maintained since. South of this is supposedly ok (especially the area around Four Point Lake)
A web page of snow conditions for each of the trails located here. Just last week it sounded like heavy snow still – today they are listed as snow free for the trails on Eastern Pasayten but heavy snow at Larch Pass still.
Map and trail guides courtesy of Backpacking Washington, available from Amazon for $13.46.
I was wondering if you had been planning a back-up. Bummer though! Still, very pretty area to hit!
yeah – i’m bummed not to see the wonderland this time. oh well – there is always next year 🙂
I’m about to head into the Pasayten on Thursday night. We are headed for the Caro, Lago Mtn area up near Shelrock pass. We’ll all plan to bivy near 7000 feet. I’d be very interested to here how your recent Pasayten Loop trip went and any info on snowpack and bugs.
you remind me i need to get the trip-report written up. 🙂
the trip was outstanding – we really enjoyed it; it’s an incredible and vast area with stunning views at every turn. the snow was almost gone (few patched off to the side) when we did it over 2 weeks ago – so you shouldn’t see any white stuff at all. the bugs were out in full force at some camps, and light at others. i posted about the bug protection we used – and the sawyer clothing stuff worked amazingly well. with that on our clothes, headnets and a simple avon bug repellent/sunlotion – we didn’t need any full-on deet at all. i escaped with a mere two mosquito nibbles.
i’ll try and get the write up done soon! my wife is due with our first kid in 8 days – so if i don’t get it done soon – i probably won’t for a while 🙂
have fun out there!
Thanks for the info Brett,
I did a similar version of the same loop you guys did back in 1995. I’m not sure if you remember passing the cabin near Tungsten lake, but that thing saved us on our trip in late September. We lucked out and no one was using it when a storm came through with 40+ mph winds and snow. It would have been one heck of a night out in a tent, instead we were warm and dry in the cabin complete with woodstove. Did you make it up to Cathedral Peak? I recall a fairly airy leap of faith to reach the true summit. Good luck with the new addition to your family, sounds like your pack weight will be increasing by a few pounds in the future.
FYI, I’ve had good luck using the ExOfficio Buzzoff clothing for mosquitoes. Not sure about the long term health risk, but I feel it’s better than slathering on the juice.
yeah – we got some great cabin photos – tungsten mine was an awesome area.
Nigel one of the guys on the trip wrote up some info on Tungsten mine with some pics:
Myself and 2 other scout leaders took 11 scouts on most of this route and completed it yesterday. We left on August 6 and it took 5 days and we guess it was about 60 miles. The only part that we did not do was the Coleman Ridge section. The trails out of the Cathedral Lake area have all changed. Check with Rangers before you head back south. The trail goes through burnt forest from 30 Mile Camp Trail head all the way over Windy Pass ends just before the Horseshoe Basin. Water was plentiful along the entire route. We were so close we took the 25 minutes to climb Windy Peak. Great experience for the kids. Email me if you have any questions.