The mountains beckon
August 4th 2006 was the day to begin the tram ride towards paradise. The day before consisted of our nine hour drive from Newport to the town of Joseph. All summer we were restricted to weekend climbs due to jobs and other responsibilities, now the time had come for a real adventure. The Wallowas seemed the perfect place to make it happen.
Climbing begins-1st day
Our 1st day's route visible to the right, east pk, hidden pk, Aneroid and Dollar lake. Photo by Gabe
Ontop of Mount Howard we eagerly put on the packs and raced toward east pk. Once the route steepend we slowed a bit and our crowd became divided with different speeds. Once atop East pk we took a short break to re-group and eat some food. We repeated this after making the summit of Hidden pk. The ridge walk was a fun route with amazing views of the high wallowas. Next summit was big Aneroid Mountain, there we took a longer break to wait for our slowest member, Kenneth. For some reason he packed around 15 days worth of food for 5 days. I believe his pack was over 60 lbs, ha. We decended Aneroid and camped at Dollar lake. Later that evening Gabe and I climbed up Dollar Ridge.
View from Polaris
The second day was a turning point for the trip. We had planned to climb sentinel pk via polaris pass and continue to cusick but things changed. Due to forks in the trail we missed the correct route to polaris pass and found ourselves closer to Sentinel. Insteasd of backtracking to the trail we opted to scramble straight up to the ridge. This turned out to be quite the mistake. The seemingly simple route soon turned nasty loose and rockfall became the main concern, especially with 5 people. After this the major decision of the day was to summit polaris and backtrack a little ways to Jewett lake to camp. While we rested Gabe ran over and bagged Sentinel. The days ahead were to be exploration.
View of Jewett peak
The 3rd day was elected mainly a rest day with the exception of a couple scrambles near camp. One we named Jewett peak, and the other was to sight a route towards Bonneville Mtn.
The sight we saw towards Bonneville Mtn
The next day we Succeeded in making the summit of Bonniville via the rocky, south ridge. Another rocky ridge dropped north to other cool looking peaks so we continued on.
Gabe and Kenneth on some rocks near one of the peaks we reached
We took our time getting back to camp and we still had plenty of daylight left. We bagged Petes Point that evening for our last summit.
The final day was a powerhike to civilization to find the nearest milkshake.
Note: This trip report is quite short and summarized because the day after our return i had to go straight to the hospital for shoulder surgery because of a previous injury. I typed this all with one hand! Many months of rehab and mountain cravings await me.