Labor Day 1997, my wife and I camped in the Lakes Basin. One afternoon she stayed in camp tired so I took off for the summit. It was an easy climb with great views. Unfortunately this mountain gets a lot of traffic and the summit was pretty trampled. The mountain and enitre vicinity was full of people because it was Labor Day, but still was a very nice weekend. Very few mountains out there as beautiful as this one.
This was a stop for a photo op on the way to Glacier Peak to the south. Ran most of the way - what a beautiful valley. The trail has been re-alligned some since I was last here and it's an improvement. Long day - with bagging Glacier Peak, total distance was 23.3 miles and 10 hours. Very hot day in the lowlands - 105 in some areas made this the perfect day to travel light into the high country - about 70 degrees on top!
Also did this one from the Wallowa Lake trailhead on 8/29/96.
A beautiful hike in the fall. A few light patches of snow on the east side of the rige line.
Man, do I love the Wallowas! Drove out from Portland Saturday morning and started up about 1:15 pm. Hardest part of the hike is in the first 3 miles when you are fresh. Made the ponds and then enjoyed a beautiful stroll for 2 and a half miles in the Lostine Meadow with Eagle Cap dominating the view the whole way. At one point I was looking down and almost walked into a mule deer. He jumped behind a tree and then stood there about 3 feet from me looking at me like "Dude, watch it!" Made the Lakes Basin about 4:45 pm (what an incredible area) and decided to keep on going. Decided to bivy about 8300 feet on a flat area just before you gain the ridge above the pass. Had some dinner and watched the sun go down as the moon came up over Eagle Cap. Was incredible but my camera wouldn't cooperate.
Trying to sleep under that moon was like trying to sleep under a street light. I could make out detail on the Matterhorn at midnight. A little bit later some clouds whooshed in and I wondered if my decision to bring only the bivy sack was unwise, but, they whooshed out about an hour later. Learned that the Wallowas are under flight paths and watched some jets whizz by about every 20 minutes or so heading to Portland or Seattle. And of course, every sound you hear when you bivy solo sounds like a cougar or a bear but are probably pikas and sparrows. About 1 am I finally fell asleep for good.
Woke up about 6:30 am to some clouds and I could see some rain on the horizon so, after some breakfast and stashing my pack, I hurried up to the summit enjoying the views. Walked into a group of about 5 huge grouse near the summit. Once on top, I could see the clouds were disappearing and the sun came out. Enjoyed great views for about 40 minutes before heading down. Man, I did not want to come down. Hiked out at a pretty good pace and back to the car by 2:30 pm. Then the long drive back to Portland. I think it took me about 5 and a half hours hiking time to the summit and 4 and a half out (minus bivy time). Great weather.
9/30/16 Hiked in the East Fork of the Lostine the afternoon before with Diane, Luna and Ramsey. Camped at Mirror Lake. Hiked up to the summit in the wind in the morning. Had dreams of tagging Glacier afterwards but clouds were rolling in for the afternoon stormwatch. Back down to camp and battened down the tent hatches. Some rain materialized that night. Spent the next day hiking around the Lakes Basin before hiking out the following day. Food in Joseph before driving back. Always great to get some time in the Wallowas and share it with someone for their first time.
My wife and I hiked up on a beautiful Saturday. Perfect weather - clear, hot, and windless! Hit patchy snow at about 7000 feet - became continuous at about 7600 feet. What a beautiful summit with great views of all of the Wallowa's major mountains. Bivied just below the summit pinnacle (~9000 feet) under clear skies. A great way to spend our 5th year anniversary!
In 1999, my friend Dave and I had planned a 16 day backpacking trip around the whole wilderness.
We stashed food at the Lostine entrance and the Wallowa Lake SP. We started our trip at the East Eagle trailhead and hiked in about 7 miles the first day, the second day we made it to Horton Pass and decided to climb Eagle Cap and camp on top.
We passed one person coming down and didn't see anybody else until three days later. There wasn't really any place to set up a tent and because it was so nice out we decided to just roll out our bags and sleep under the stars. The next day we got up and hiked down to Galcier Lake and hung out there for the day.
We didn't get to do the trip that we had planned because by the time we go to the State Park my feet were shredded, so we headed back to the car in three days.
In 1978 I was 15 years old and was invited by my stepfather at the time on an outing to conduct the snow survey for the USGS. He and his Vietnam buddies dragged me all through the Wallowas for 2 weeks on snowshoes. Eagle Cap was one summit, and there were a host of others. This trip is what led to my fascination with the alpine environment, and is why I climb today. I remember stopping in Enterprise or some town nearby to retrieve a key to a survival cabin from the county assesor. It took considerable time to dig the cabin from the snow. Inside this cabin was a wood stove and logbook with journal entries from the turn of the century written with quill and ink.
On Labor Day weekend 1977 three of us backpacked to Frazier Lake and camped. The next day we day hiked on up to Glacier Lake, then ascended to the south ridge of Eagle Cap and up the ridge to the summit. We traversed to the next peak on the ridge above Glacier Lake, then returned to our camp cross country, passing Little Frazier Lake on the way. Hiked out the following day.