Attempted Chocolate Peak via Jones Creek Trail, Church's Pond Trail, and the Northeast ridge. The Jones-Whites Creek Trailhead parking lot was full so we had to start at the lower Galena Creek Visitor Center lot. We were on the trail at 11:45 and made it to within 1,000 ft of Church's Pond by 2:15 before turning around. We wore snowshoes the entire way with a couple people on the trail ahead of us and then had to break trail through 1-2 ft of fresh powder past the Jones Creek / Church's Pond trail split. Party of 2. 3.6 miles and 2 hour 35 minutes to the turnaround point. Weather was partly cloudy and cool, with mild winds on the way up. Temperature dropped considerably on the way back down once the sun was blocked by the mountains and required thick gloves, beanies, and extra layers. 2,215 ft elevation gain to the turnaround. 3 hour 58 minutes round trip (1 hour 13 minutes faster on the descent with the snow nicely compacted).
Started up the Mt. Rose Trail, over to Church, then to Chocolate, then down to the highway at Galena Creek. Trip Report.
Forced to deploy the 'ol snowshoes a quarter mile east of Church's Pond on the approach. Took the shoes off for the scramble up the rock field that is Chocolate Peak. Gusting winds so appreciated the little rock wall on the top.
Up and over Chocolate Peak on the way up Mount Rose. Windy at the top but nice views.
Took a new and unknown route, the "East Arete". Fun scrambling almost made the bushwack worthwhile! Great summit views.
Took the Jones Creek trail and then bushwacked to the top.
Directions from Church's Pond A-OK. Snow created some interesting challenges. Got a bit turned around on the descent, and if I'd gone the way that I intuited, I would have wound up in that meadow behind the pond. So no big.
[Another attempt 5/23/09; serious bushwhacking through mountain mahogany, which isn't very forgiving. Total PIA, almost not worth it, much better in the snow.]
A lot of snow.
I reached the summit in just over 2 hours with an approach from the Jones Creek trail. A ranger told me I could take a trail back down to Blacks Canyon once at the summit. Boy, was she WRONG! I got lost in the woods for over two hours, getting cuts from bushwhacking and ending up in very dangerous circumstances in the steep slopes. The way up to the summit was great, but the rest of the day was AWFUL!!!