I'd hit a number of peaks in the Rubies now, and in the back of my mind I've wanted to do Snow Lake Peak as well. I figured that as rugged as it looks, it was probably one of those that once you get up to it, you can find a way. That's what happened today. Under partly cloudy skies I started at the end of Lamoilles Canyon's Scenic Byway at just before 14:00, and I hopped on the horse trail that runs parallel to the main foot-traffic trail that leads to Lamoilles Lake and beyond on the Ruby Crest Trail. I jutted off the horse trail once I had a good view of Snow Lake Peak. The weather was absolutely perfect with slight breezes and perhaps 70 degrees. The Class 4 climbing started on Snow Lake Peak's northeast face. The rock was awesome to feel and navigate on. It wasn't long before I'd gotten up several levels on that side, and soon after came a final push through a perhaps 30-foot chute. It was very simple, and 2.5hrs after starting the hike, I was atop Snow Lake Peak. Surprisingly there wasn't a register anywhere. That is subject to change though ;)
My wife Penelope and I started from the end of the road parking lot and hiked WEST on snow covered slopes to the left edge of the peak as it appeared before us. I will post some photos of the way we went. The route was great, but not totally easy. Steep class 3 with short steps of class 4 until we hit the summit tower/pinnacle. That turned out an "old school" class 4 with technical climbing over huge exposure. We did not use rope but just so...We had a short (30m) rope with us. I thought the approach on frozen snow, with crampons and ski poles worked great. I would recommend this wonderful tower as a great trip in the beautiful area of Ruby Mountains. Class 4+ the way we went (see the drawing on the Snow Lake Peak page).
Best peak in the Rubies. Went straight up the NE ridge on steep, solid, juggy rock (class 4-5), then straight down the west ridge (class 4-5). Evidently there's a more circuitous route that keeps things class 3-4, but I didn't find it. Continued to Fitzgerald, then out Thomas Canyon. Trip report.
Nice mountain, one of the few class 3+ in the Ruby's.
With Adam and Matthew, a most enjoyable day of scrambling in the Ruby Mtns. Trip Report