Day 4 - Thompson Ridge
A fun and relatively easy day today. Thompson Ridge is the long ridgeline descending from Mt. Thompson, running between the Sabrina and South Lake drainages. We had two summits over 13,000ft along the ridge as our targets, each worth 1/2 a Challenge peak. The highest is unofficially called Ski Mountaineers Peak.
We had 25 participants at the start at South Lake, almost all of them making it to Thompson Ridge or other peaks. Several climbed Trapezoid and Johnson, while two (Karl and Avery) did the class 3 ridge traverse between Ski Mountaineers and Mt. Thompson. The cross-country from the Treasure Lakes Trail to Thompson Ridge was surprisingly scenic, lots of meandering creeks flowing with water, green alpine meadows and 4-5 unnamed lakes in an area seldom visited. Some folks went up Ski Mountaineers first, while others chose the northern summit, some did just one while others did both. This had folks criss-crossing back and forth across the basins, making it fun to run into other parties at various times throughout the day. A small party stopped to swim in one of the lakes, others napped. A bonus peak a short distance north of the two summits had a class 5.6 summit block that six of us managed to scale. The rain came earlier but much lighter today, drops starting around noon but never soaking the rock or ourselves. Most of the participants were off the trail by 2pm with a few late stragglers.
Tomorrow we're heading over Bishop Pass for a tour of the back side of the Palisades, hopefully reaching Barrett Peak
near Polomonium. Some are planning shorter outings to Isosceles, Agassiz, and others. We'll still be watching the weather carefully, but it should start to improve some if the reports can be believed.