OverviewGray Peak is an obscure peak just to the northwest of Courtney Peak in the heart of the Chelan Sawtooth Wilderness east of Lake Chelan in the Washington Cascades. This peak is rarely climbed when compared to the nearby Star and Oval peaks. This peak though has some great ridge runs that will make anyone seeking to get up in the high country satisfied.
There are two great ways to do Gray Peak. The first is to traverse the north ridge from Horseshoe Basin and Tuckaway Lake. The second would be to traverse the southeast ridge from Courtney Peak.
Getting ThereGetting to Gray Peak will probably require you to pack in. You can come in via the Eagle Creek drainage but this is a long 8 mile forest walk starting way down at 3000 feet. You may want to find another way but which ever way you go you need to get to Horseshoe Basin and Tuckaway Lake.
If you get to Eagle Pass you can traverse the ridge above Eagle Pass to the south and follow a climbers trail to the top of the ridge seperating Eagle Pass with Horseshoe Basin.
You can also take the long way around on the trail heading west and then looping south and coming into Horseshoe Basin from the lower end.
The high route is better and shorter. Once in the basin you will notice two craggy points on the ridge to the north of the basin. Don't try to traverse over these points but instead stay below them slightly and walk on talus just south of them and then regain the north ridge of Gray where it becomes very gentle. From here it's a very easy and scenic ridge walk to the Gray Peak summit.
The summit itself is pretty large and from it you can see the ridge continue over the top towards Courtney Peak. There is also a perfect flat spot for a tent if you so desired to camp near the summit.
If you are standing atop Courtney Peak the ridge walk to Gray isn't technical at all as long as you stay on the south side of the ridge the whole time. It does drop quite a ways that you'll have to re-climb but this ridge I hear is fantastic.
Steep cliffs drop to the north and this area typically has great wildflower displays.
Red TapeA northwest forest pass is required to park at any trailhead. Please leave no trace as this is wild wilderness area.
CampingIf you backpack in you can get quite creative where you decide to camp. Designated campgrounds don't exist in the wilderness area.
External LinksFor an up to the minute weather forecast for the summit of Grey Peak see this link: