If you're looking for solitude, you'd better camp here midweek as the area gets a lot of traffic on weekends.
I haven't been much of a fan of the newer cutoff from the Gold Run Pass trail. It may be a flatter approach but it seems to waste distance doing it, I didn't find it to save any time or effort. I also was disappointed by the manner in which YA Butte has been marred by the trail, and the way it plops one directly into the upper tarn area. The USFS claimed that the old Keep Kool trail was difficult to maintain ( and I suppose it was, though I saw little evidence that they tried ). I will admit that Keep Kool is pretty steep and rugged in places. Still, I find the old trail a more aesthetic progression( even in spite of the recent clear-cut), moving from falls, to the lower meadows, to the lower and upper tarns. In winter or spring, the Keep Kool approach is still the logical choice. Hopefully there's some other die-hards out there who will continue to put their boots to this historic trail and keep it from disappearing completely. For those who wish to find it, the trailhead is at the end of a short spur road that branches sharply left about 3 miles up from the highway.
I do not think that the USFS ever had anything to do with the Keep Cool Trail. It is an old mining path that just took the most direct route. Plenty of old minining relics in the meadows. I foud going up the Keep Kool Trail bad but going down was a lot worse. I wouldn't care if this historic trail disappeared--aside from the fact that I'm too old to go there--but I admire those with the fortitude to use the trail.
My father and a Mr Newt Baker reopened Keep Kool in the 50's and I have been going up there for 36 years of so . The trail is a nice way to make a loop of the area and it does seem that it is cleared from time to time by folks like myself . It is a bit steep I suppose but we used to get horses up to the lower and upper medows once upon a time . You can loop over to welcome pass as well from there . Enjoy
Not sure why this peak gets hyped up. If you are comfortable with class 3, it is fine. The exposure is not terrible, and the most exposed parts are relatively solid. In mid-day conditions during late summer, I have not felt that an ice axe and crampons were necessary. The run out from the moat down to the glacier is short, not very steep, and did not look high consequence.
This is a great scramble though.
Next party heading up to Tomyhoi should bring a new summit register, . . . current one was completely filled and then some.