Took the most direct way in from Gem Lake Trail; the off-trail portion was much shorter than anticipated but took some careful routefinding in places. It doesn't look like this peak sees much action. Really fun, solid scrambling with as much or little exposure as you want. Almost forgot it was a Saturday in the part until passing by Gem Lake on the return - then it got BUSY back to the car.
Hit all 3 "Gemstones" same day as The Needles and Point 8469 over by Glen Haven. Quite a long day. Good weather though. Lot of people (tourists) on the Gem Lake Trail.
West Gem Peak is by far easier than Middle Gem Peak. Cool scrambles with great views on top. Rough rock though.
Look carefully for a route, shouldn't exceed class 2+ if you do it right. With Balanced Rock from Cow Creek TH
With Castle Mountain & Marmot Point.
Gem Lake is one of the most popular trails in the park, I am sure. But once we passed the lake we saw noone else. We went to the notch between Middle Gemstone and West Gemstone. Descended to a flat area where I contemplated a route. My wife found a nice place to enjoy the weather and I headed up various ramps to flat area west of the summit. The rest of the way is 3rd class to just south of the summit and then winds around the east side of the summit boulder. From there it is a easy scramble to the top. Wonderful unobstructed views of the high peaks and Lumpy Ridge.
Ascended the Northeast Face (5.0) from the Lumpy Ridge Trailhead. I first explored the northwest side for a route. Not seeing any likely candidates I ventured to the northeast side and ascended the face via a 150 foot crack/slab rated about 5.0. I wore rock climbing shoes and was glad to have them. I came out six months earlier in an attempt to climb this formation but foggy and wet conditions resulted in me mistakenly getting to the top of 'Middle Gemstone' instead.