Went up the Ralston Trail, deeper snows above 8,000 feet made snowshoes a must. Actually a warm day, no jacket, only wore gloves on summit where winds were maybe 5 MPH. Ran out of Powerade on descent and ate some fine powdery snow to keep my mouth from feeling dry. Trip report here.
Nice short trail to the top, was WINDY up there!
From what I remember, the trail is junk in some spots. Wasn't the most fun hike I've done. Fantastic view of Desolation though.
via Pyramid Peak and Lake Aloha
Climbed with a team of five from Echo Lakes. Very scenic and well worth the effort. A straight forward route that gets more interesting as you near Cup Lake and the ridge begins to narrow. Our descent route was off the NE ridge of Ralston and across the lakes.
Ski descent south bowl. Short approach makes this a popular peak for the backcountry ski crowd. Harvested a little corn down low.
Hiked with my wife on the way to Lake of the Woods to camp. On our return she insisted the trail leading up the northwest ridge was the trail back to our car. As I told her it wasn't and there we were on Ralston again the next day, Oh well. It was worth it, I smiled for a long time until she asked me to stop.
Took the "death slog" south face trail from Camp Sacramento. Very steady, tiring climb. Was disappointed there wasn't a summit register but the views were fantastic.
Perfect fall day to hike. Fantastic panoramic view as always.
We started from the Pyramid Creek trailhead, climbed Horsetail Falls, then up the face of the ridge from Lake of the Woods. Lake of the WOods was entirely frozen over, and the hike up the peak itself required snowshoes. Awesome views, lots of fun, sketchy snow bridges.
Nice hike, trail clear at bottom, icy snowy slopes on the top. Used crampons last stretch for some simple traction.
We were blessed with amazing weather and clear skies. It was a much easier climb than expected. We summited in a little over two hours. Beautiful views from the top with a cloudless sky. We could see a lot of the Coastal Range, even further south than Mt Diablo.
Followed the use trail from the Echo Chalet backpacker lot to Becker Peak. Then followed the ridgeline from Becker to the start of the talus field past Talking Mountain. (Lots more boulder scrambling along the ridge than I was anticipating- but that was far preferable to the chaparral on the south slopes) Opted to swing south around Cup Lake before gaining the Ralston plateau. Returned via the PCT proper.
Pics and commentary are here.
Me and a buddy hiked in from 50 into the desolation and did the peak on the way out. We decided to leave our packs by the trail and just do a peak without them.
Well, on the way back we took a different way down and missed the trail our packs were on. This is easy in Deso since much of a trail is granite with only rock towers to mark the way. We were following random rock towers closer and closer down to the top of horse tail falls...
Eventually we found our trail and our packs but that was an exciting detour and a good lesson to not make the same mistake again. Next time I separate from my pack, I will make sure i know exactly how to find it.
This is one of the 1st Sierra Peaks I climbed. My friends and I climbed it and road our sleeping pads down the snowfield. Once in 1977 my friend and I were climbing toward the summit and we heard the rapid deceleration of an aircraft, then a crash. We were sure a plane had crashed into Desolation. When we hiked out a couple of days later, we learned that a Dentist had crashed his Cessna into the middle of Highway 50.
Fun chutes of north shoulder, and great bowls coming down to the lake.
Easy getting up, got a bit lost coming down.
Climbed Northwest Ridge from Haypress Meadows and skied the North Face from just below the summit rocks. One of the best ski descents I've done, and a great 3 day tour with Jeannie, Jason, and Scott!
Great view from the top.
Second hike of the day after Little Pyramid.