Uneventful climb except for making the mistake of trying to climb the west ridge proper for the last 80ft or so. Lot's of exposure and more like 5.5 or so. After climbing up 30ft I was faced with an exposed move and decided I had better downclimb and accept defeat. Before heading down though I decided to check out the other side of the summit block and was pleased to find the class 3/4 route that is typically mentioned. Climbed this to the summit without incident.
I had business in the little town of Glide and finished up at four and headed for my next meeting in Klamath Falls so made a last minute decision to give Thielsen a try. Five or six years ago I hiked up to the PCT junction but was stopped by deep snow (not to mention the formidable appearance of this mountain!). Tuesday, 7/20 was a great day with a large high pressure system moving in and clearing skies so the conditions couldn't have been better. I didn't really think I'd make the summit since I didn't get started 'til quarter past five but the trail is in great shape with a very even grade so the first four miles to the PCT junction took less than an hour. The trail above the PCT is pretty good too until you get to the scree. This mountain looks very formidable from the west side but is really not that bad and I was surprised to find it fairly easy going as I approached the summit pinnacle. That last 80 feet has some exposure but the holds are great. There was little wind and the summit temperature was in the 50's. I lost my GPS at the summit when it fell out of my fanny pack and didn't discover it was gone until I had descended about 500 vertical feet so I got to climb the top twice! Unfortunately, I did not locate the GPS, which had evidently fallen down between some of those big rocks at the summit. No time for a thorough search as I was rapidly losing daylight. Time for a new GPS anyway! Total time up about 2:10 and 1:15 down. Adding the time at the top and the time to re-climb the top made it 4:10 total. I highly recommend this hike/climb. The views are fantastic from the summit and you can even see a bit of the surface of Crater Lake from the top. Oh yeah, if you find my GPS before it gets zapped by lightning I'll give you a reward to get it back to me - please drop me a line! Thanks - dn.
Finally made the chance to summit this awesome looking peak. Another late start (we didn’t start going up Bachelor until almost 11.30) was in order, after Lara & I made the (right!!) decision to hang out with Frostbite at Sparks Lake the night before.
Left the trailhead at 10.26. Pretty trail before hooking up with the PCT right below timberline, but the mosquitoes there were murderous (they don’t seem to have that blessed intolerance to the middle of the day like most of the little f@$!ers do). The form of that mountain is quite intimidating when gaining the ridge (especially with clouds swirling around the summit, which they did for much of the day). We encountered a wide variety of people going up the peak, including a surprising number in T-shirts & shorts seemingly without warm clothes, rain gear, extra water or food (with their families- quite large in some cases- in the same situation)- reminded me a lot of Yosemite. At any rate, despite my misgivings about the swirling clouds around the summit pinnacle, as well as the grey & black ones headed for it, we pressed on.
Before I knew it, we were at the base of the summit pinnacle- it looked really cool! After briefly checking it out to figure out the best way up it, it didn’t take long before we were on the true summit (I arrived 14.06). While there’s certainly exposure there, if you’re comfortable going up (& down) 4th class terrain, you shouldn’t have a problem with it. As soon as we arrived, these trippy fast-moving foggy clouds started to converge on us, & only glimpses of the surroundings could be had (a shame!). The clouds made me nervous, & after signing some paper & putting it in the summit register without a lid & snapping some shots, we made a hasty retreat (leaving 14.14). The weather continued to be spotty around the summit (& all around the surrounding area) on the way down, & we never got any good views of the volcanoes to the north.
After an eternity, got back to the TH @ 18.00. We put our stuff away while enjoying a brew each, before heading over to Crater Lake (a must-see in Oregon!).
Definitely one of the cooler summits I’ve done (sweet summit pinnacle & views!!), in an amazing place, with great company!
West Ridge, June 26, 2004
The bugs are out in full force and the scree is as good as it gets, but that impressive look of the mountain and the last 80' scramble makes this climb worth. A fun short climb.
West Ridge, July 5, 2002
First alpine rock experience. Impressive looking mountain, but it is much easier than it looks. Lots of good holds up the summit pinnacle. Scree and loose stuff going up, crowded on a hot summer weekend.
A good climb to have done, the scree made this climb a one time deal.
I am glad for the experience but probably won't climb it again.
A cool climb. When we started it was clear, by the time we summitted it was pelting hail on us. We heard some thunder and got down below the peak as fast as we could. This peak is known as the lightning rod of the Cascades and we now know why!
A great workout climb in a great area (lots of lakes below). The top is very aesthetic: after a few simple rock moves, you are sitting on top of a tiny little pinnacle. There's room for maybe six, maximum up there. Very cool. Route descriptions, as usual, over-rate the exposure/difficulty. Anyone accustomed to mountains will zip right up.
In my opinion this was my first peak worth counting. What a beautiful area! From about half way up it looks like Grinch mountain. There is great exposure on the top. A must do if you are in Oregon
It took me a little less than 4 hours to reach the summit which was covered in a light dusting of snow, possibly the first of the season. It was a pretty fun solo climb, however the views were nonexistant. i could barely see the bottom of the summit pinnacle from the top. it was also cold and windy. winter is almost here!!! I saw two other people heading up as i was on my way back. I was a little nervous about the last section but it was nowhere near as hard as i was expecting.
Incredible views from the summit. The last 70 ft or so were a little scary for me.
For a lot of details of my trip see Cornvallis entry below. This was my second hike. I loved it. Some guys brought a little girl, maybe 8, with them. Its a pretty easy climb. There is a lot of scree but not compared to St. Helens or Middle Sister. The last 80 feet or so are definitely worth the climb (the little girl didn't go up this, but she got to Chicken Point). It makes the trip. The views from the top were awesome. If you want to feel woosy sit on the summit point and look down to the east. Its about 2000' straight down. Good times!!!
Perfect weather, beautiful mountain, incredible day! Fellow SummitPost member annaleiserabinek and I arrived late Friday night and found a spot at the Broken Arrow campground at Diamond Lake and grabbed a few hours of sleep. I awoke to the silhouette of Mt. Thielsen through the trees as the sun began rising behind it, small sliver of moon still hanging above the summit pinnacle. Broke camp and ate in the short lived cold morning air, by the time we hit the trailhead at 7:30AM it was warm. The trail leading to the west ridge was very nice and mellow. Once on the ridge the views were spectacular, from the Sister's to Mt. McLoughlin. The hot morning sun hung directly over the summit of Thielsen as if the mountain was emitting the intense light. Trudged our way up the loose rock and scrambled our way to the chicken out point. The final eighty feet were not as bad as I had imagined although I took a less preferable route a little more to the left than I wanted because there was roped climbing team going up the easiest route. The down climb was easy. Spent about an hour eating and soaking in the views and sun barefoot just below the summit, then headed back. Couldn't resist climbing on the hudge sand castle looking rock formation on the way down. After, we drove a few miles down HWY 230 to Hamaker campground and soaked our feet and washed up in the frigid Rouge River...beautiful. Drove back to Diamond Lake resort and had omelets, fries, toast, lots of coffee, and decided to climb Mt. Bailey the next day since we were there (great decision). Found a nice little camp site on the lake with a view of Mt. Bailey, set up camp and drifted off to sleep. Perfect day!
The last 100 feet were great! A little fourth class fun.
Great little finish to this one! Could have done without the flies on the summit tho.
Dean and I slept in a rest area along US97, then got up early and drove to the TH. It was a perfect day to climb Thielsen, with the smoke of the LaPine fire to the north being the only visibility limiter. I enjoyed the scramble at the summit, although I'm not all that confident on rock and the downclimb had a moment or two. Great fun! 24th and 25th Oregon county highpoints (Douglas and Klamath).
Left PDX at 10:00AM
Started climb 2:20PM
- Fast hike to PCT, scree slog & summit scramble
- Ran & walked back to car
- Round trip 3 hours & 46 minutes
- It was only about 80 degrees and sunny, but it felt pretty hot. Now I know why this one seems more commonly done in early Fall.
Back home at PDX at 10:15PM
Can you say peak bagger?
Great day to climb this peak. Not a cloud in the sky and tremendous views in all directions. I must admit to being a little intimidated at first by the last 80 feet but finally made the effort to stand on the summit after being prodded by fellow summitposter rfbolton who went right up it with no hesitation. The register is a lead pipe with bits of paper scraps stuffed in it and a red pen inside. I'm not sure how long entries will last as it is a sketchy set up. .
Easy hike in. Last few hundred feet are a little hairy, loose rock slabs. The pinnacle is easy class V, the group I was with didn't rope up but a group ahead of us placed protection -- it feels fairly exposed. The weather was beautiful, hot. Bring lots of water and sunscreen if you climb during the summer.
Great peak. Several summits of this mountain including a winter attempt thwarted by overhanging snow cauliflowers 50 ft. shy of the summit.