Tieton Peak Trail
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South Fork Tieton River, Surprise Lake, Tieton Peaks #1131, Tieton Glacier, Cold Lake — Aug 24, 2010 — C P
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Cows and elk and goats, Oh My! Glacier Peak was not in the cards today, the weather would not hol...
Cows and elk and goats, Oh My! Glacier Peak was not in the cards today, the weather would not hold, so we settled on the glaciers in the Goat Rocks.
Got a late start though still found time for "the biggest peach we've ever seen" at the Naches fruit stand- a bit underripe.
Started walking at 1pm after a 4 hour trip. Cows. South Fork Tieton River trail 2 miles to Tieton Peaks trail junction, slight right. So unmaintained the "trail not maintained" sign from a few years back is gone. Trail in good shape the 2.5 miles to the marsh.
Cut straight across trying to stay on what looked to be the high ground, no such luck- the grass was just taller. Moved quickly to avoid sinking to the boottops.
On the other side we stayed to the left following decent tread with occasional glimpses of the mountains at the valley head. Multiple trails soon made the route confusing but Maria kept us on track. Went a few hundred feet too high (right) but from here were able to scope out the rest of the route. Enjoyed knowing where we were and this beautiful alp slope instead of wandering around in the woods.
Soon past the waterfalls and next to the creek coming from the Conrad Glacier we ascended to Cold Lake where we made camp. The multicolored stripes on Tieton Peak are a fitting backdrop to this bleak, stunning landscape. Walked around the lake pre retirement.
Next morning made our way to the Conrad-Tieton saddle to see for the first time the Tieton Glacier, and what a sight indeed! Left most of our stuff here and dropped onto the glacier. Made our way down the gentle slope perhaps 500' to where we ascended snow slopes to the pass above Cispus Basin, where we could see the PCT far below.
Retraced our steps, sliding safely much of the way and back up the Tieton Glacier, this time on the ice. Back at our stuff we made camp and headed up Tieton Peak to watch the sunset. The ridge here is scenic, easy walking. Spent a windy, coyote-song filled night at the saddle.
Next morning (day 3) even windier though still sunny. Maria had managed to make breakfast while I slept. Soon clouds began pouring through the far pass and we knew time was of the essence. Ahead of the storm made our way from the Conrad-Tieton saddle, across the Conrad Glacier, to the Conrad-Meade col.
Made our way down next to the Meade Glacier and to the campsite right of the stream coming off the glacier. Followed the faint trail on the ridge crest to where a better trail took us to the Surprise Lake loop. If you follow the stream from the Meade Glacier you'll run into it.
Once on the loop made good time to Surprise Lake, and out to the car uneventfully. Total trip 3 days/2nights 20 miles 7000'. Expect to see plenty of wildlife (especially goats), and no people. Some routefinding and easy glacier travel.
South Fork Tieton River #1120,Tieton Peak Trail #1131 — Jul 17, 2004 — coyote
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The coyote is an explorer. He likes to think of himself and mate as Lewis and Clark. His mate, who ...
The coyote is an explorer. He likes to think of himself and mate as Lewis and Clark. His mate, who has a sarcastic bent, gently chides “Like Lewis and Clark with a GPS and a U.S. Geological Survey map.