great campsites at rampart lakes or lila lakes. access to the PCT possible with off trail hiking. great 360deg panoramic view from the top. easy class 1-2 hike. boot path to summit.
For some reason this one never seemed too appealing to me so it took me awhile to get around to it. Perhaps due to low expectations, I was blown away by this one! Amazing! I took the rocky run back door route via Lake Laura and Lake Lillian. The trail through Rampart Lakes up to the summit of Alta was stunning, and the views from the top were incredible. Lots of mountains I do are one (summit) and done, but I wouldn't be surprised if I find myself back here some day. Truly a beautiful place!
Easy scramble with great views!
Camped at Rachel Lake and climbed up to Alta Mountain the next day. Not a single person up there on Alta with me. Perfectly serene.
This is a classic. Great roaming in the alpine.
Fall colors, sunny up high, fog in Seattle: I was in no hurry to spend less time up there than I did.
Finally got this monkey off my back. I did it back in 2009 but missed that all important last turn - see below. Today was different despite pretty considerable obstacles. I once again took the Lake Lillian TH but this time Snow was DEEP every where from lake Lillian up. Lillian is completely covered still.
Getting into the Rampart lakes was rough. I lost track a few times and did a bit of glissading. I probably wouldn't have gone further but I had a friend that was doing the same hike today and were taking the Rachel Lake TH. I got to the top after several confused moments and Met my friend on his way down. He had started about 30 minutes earlier.
I told him I wanted to go back down the Rachel Lake Trail after a few stellar views at the summit I descended the Rachel Lake trail. Much less snow here. It is longer but better until about late July I would suspect when Ramparts become de-thawed.
fun hike, make sure to check out Lake Lila
I was lucky to be one of very few people in western Washington to bask in the sunshine that day.
Did it a few years back with someone from the UW climbing club, long day from the Rachel Lake trailhead
This was a decent trail to the top, it was a fun day up. Unfortunately the views were covered by mist and clouds.
massive summit cairn
In '05 it was so cloudy I thought I was on the summit. Going back in the sun three years later revealed it was the last of a long string of false summits. So my summit date is '08.
Hike with my buds. A cool summit for sure. I have never seen so much broken glass as in the parking lot for Rachel Lake trailhead. Take your beater car, and leave the doors unlocked.
Beat the weather on an iffy weekend and enjoyed the great views! Definitely a fun ridge hike/scramble to the summit. Picked lots of wild blueberries along the way!
Went with a group to the lake... soloed up to the summit. The cairn was huge.
This is one of the few hikes I failed to make the summit. I started at the Lake Lillian fisherman's path and hiked through the Rampart Lakes on my way. Without a map its a bit of a surprise I got as far as I did. In the Rampart's the trails get a little jumbled with routes going all over the place.
The downfall for me was missing the last little left turn the trail made to ascend the to the summit. I kept thinking it has to be here somewhere as we hiked along the mountain.
We ended up at the base of what i've seen on some maps labeled as Little Alta to the ESE of the summit and even considered climbing that. Running out of daylight and realizing i'd been beaten I made my long way back to the car and had a lightening storm rip through the area. One hitting a tree about 500 yards up a ridge from me even.
I'll be back Alta Mountain!
The narrower parts of the ridge were a little tricky due to a few cornices. I camped the night before about a half mile in and woke up early this morning. Rachel Lake is still frozen over. Didn't see another soul on the trail.
WE had great weather yet again and we enjoyed views for miles and miles. EastKing, Magellan, Brent, Questzal and I made it up.
You just can't ask for a better day in the Cascades. The weather was cool and crisp, fall colors were in full swing, and I had the summit all to myself. The summit cairn is a beast of a structure.
Two hours 58 minutes to the summit, two hours 14 minutes to the car. Good times!