Nov 15, 2011
Nov 21, 2011 12:25 PM
- Type of Outing
- Day hike
Read More in our Hiking Guide
Snoqualmie Pass -- North Bend Area
Mt. Baker - Snoqualmie National Forest - Snoqualmie District
- Be Aware Of
- Snow on trail
- No water source
The break and view just out of the forest looking across the 90 corridor.
I had a nice hard workout early in the morning and while doing my 100 floors on the stair mill I had the goofy idea that today would be a good day to climb Mailbox Peak again. So I drove straight to the trailhead from the club in Bellevue, of course. Since I had not planned to climb I only had the gear that always sits in the trunk of my car. I emptied my workout bag and put in a sweatshirt (cotton), water bottle and microspikes I had in my car. I had my tennis shoes on and put on gaters I had in my trunk and in a tee shirt (cotton again, yes I know that's bad) I threw the strap of my bag over my shoulder and grabbed my poles and headed up. It was cool at 35 degrees but no rain and the sky was looking good. I found a hat hung at the trailhead sign and it was cold and wet but I borrowed it since I didn't have one today. The lower valley was wet and muddy and as I hit the switchbacks it was pretty packed and dry. At a fair ways up in the forest the breeze caused snow to drop from the tops of the trees creating some surprised snowfall down my tee shirt neck. Snow covered the trail at the halfway point in the forest and climbing was tough. Snow got deeper and deeper and eventually I put on my microspikes and tried to thaw out my toes (my feet were wet and getting cold in my cotton socks). The trail turned around the back of the mountain today and I found myself on the final spine in deep snow postholing most the way to the top. There was little wind and the sky was nice with some clouds forming and moving around the top. The top was great to achieve on a day I likely should not have achieved it but it was great all the same. I measured 4 feet of snow when I went through towards the top. Quick picture of me and the frozen mailbox from a husband and wife team that followed me the last half mile and then I headed down. My toes thawed pretty quickly with no adverse issues and it was a great day. For me down is almost always tougher on my knees than up and this day was no different...enjoy the pics from my windows phone 7.5 camera.
The last pitch climbing the spine to the top. You can see the broken trail just ahead in the center of the frame.
The upper pitch view just right of the climb route
The required Mailbox photo...this one shows me in the tee shirt I started in and made the complete climb in and the sunglasses I remembered to bring for the top.