Route OptionsThere are at least 4 ways you could approach Ladies Peak by trail. Only the most direct will be described here in detail (see the Scatter Creek section). But let's briefly touch on the other alternatives in case you are a trail runner.
A viable option would be to start at the end of Icicle Creek road and then follow the trail to the Doughgod Creek junction, turn right and follow the trail a short distance to the Frosty Creek junction, turn right and then follow that trail over to Frosy Pass junction, turn right and then and then follow that trail to Frosty Pass where the peak is easily accessible. So do 3 rights make a wrong or just a run-on sentence? This option would have less accumulative gain than the Scatter Creek option but more distance (~22 miles round-trip).
Another approach comes from the north along the Whitepine Creek drainage and crosses Frosty Pass on the way to the peak (20 miles round-trip).
You could follow the South Fork Chiwaukum Creek drainage all the way from Chiwaukum Creek campground, an unreasonably long distance (~25 miles round-trip). A climb of Big Chiwaukum could be added to this route with an overnight stay.
From the Chatter Creek trailhead follow the trail through forest to 4370 feet. Cross the creek and continue along the trail on the east side of the creek. Break out of the trees at 5000 feet and you will have a view of the east face of Grindstone Mountain. Continue through meadows and then brushy slopes towards the pass at 6660 feet, northeast of Grindstone Mountain.
Just before the pass, at 6200 feet, the trail passes near Chatter creek and crosses some rocky slabs. Be careful not to lose the sight of the route here and if in doubt, head straight uphill until the trail is visible again. When you reach the pass at 6660 feet you will have a view of Big Jim Mountain to the northeast and the Index Creek drainage down below.
Follow the trail down 540 feet to a junction at 6140 feet and turn left onto the Icicle Ridge trail. You will have to regain this 540 feet on the trek out. Snow and tarns linger in this area late into the summer. Continue east on the trail and gain another 600 vertical feet to reach Lake Edna with plentiful camping spots.
Follow the trail beyond Lake Edna to another pass located at 7000 feet. From here you will have your first view of Ladies Peak as well as Snowgrass Mountain. Continue beyond the pass and down to Ladies Pass. Beyond the junction leave the trail and follow the southeast ridge all the way to the summit. There is some scree and a few short scramble sections which can be avoided if you so choose. As of July 2013 there was no summit register present, so bring one if you know how to make them.
Getting There / Driving DirectionsFrom the town of Leavenworth on Highway 2, take Icicle Creek road 15 miles to the Chatter Creek trailhead located on the right (north) side of the road.
Red Tape / CampingA northwest Forest pass required to park at the Chatter Creek trailhead. DO NOT camp on the shore of Lake Edna. Regulations require require a distance of at least 500 feet to reduce soil erosion. Also remember to fill out the free Alpine Lakes Wilderness permit at the trailhead and carry it with you.
External Trip Reports
- Our July 2013 trip report including Snowgrass, Ladies, Cape Horn and Grindstone
- Eric Willhite's trip report including Ladies and Cape Horn
- Gil's July 2008 trip report including Ladies and Cape Horn
- Randy's July 2007 trip report including Ladies, Cape Horn and Grindstone
- A September 2006 trip report by b00 including Ladies and Cape Horn