Monday, July 14, 2008

Bald Eagle Peak Attempt 7.14.08

I think it is well known that Bald Eagle Pk. is miss labeled on many current maps. Silver Eagle and Bald Eagle are swapped on most maps. I wanted a direct line with no trail work at all. I parked just after crossing the 2nd concrete bridge on the Foss River Rd. I had some issues with a lost key and road work so I was already behind schedule. The ridge is very to easy to follow and there isn't an abundance of brush for the first 3000' of climb. Around 4500' the brush appears and slows things down. The brush last for about 700' of climb and is manageable. I knew water would be at a premium on this ridge route so I packed enough for both myself and both dogs. I can't say the extra weight was too pleasing. But I didn't want to run dry. I didn't think I would see any water until I neared the summit. I stayed on the ridge which has it's up and downs until around 5400'. I read some reports that stayed on the ridge until 5700' but that didn't look appealing for a solo effort. I traversed for nearly .25 mile most of which was on snow. I found some nice snow slopes to climb towards the notch below the false summit which is dominates the skyline to the South. I reached 5600' and noticed that I was already an hour over my turn around time. I was feeling like the route wasn't quite as apparent as I had hoped. I decided that not freaking my wife out was more important than the last 600' of climb. I really wished for another climber for this trip. I wasn't feeling real good about pressing on solo. I picked my way along the ridge until I was just before the descent really started and dropped pack and had a nice lunch. The views from the summit must be amazing. Just the ridge views were worth the effort themselves. The first part of the descent was the worst with the brush and just enough steepness to be cautious. I was able to more or less stay on the ridge for the entire descent. I always felt like I was heading too far South but I still popped out on the road just North of the car. I crossed the road and walked the short ways the East Fork of the Foss so the dogs could get some well deserved water. Great day and a route that I will repeat with some company.

Approx 5 miles 4100' of climb 8:45 car to car

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