Sunday, June 23, 2013

Mount Scott

Once a smaller satellite peak to the now-collapsed Mount Mazama, Mount Scott (8,929') is the highest peak in Crater Lake National Park.  Even with this year's early snowmelt, East Rim Drive is not yet open to cars, so I accessed from the east via US 97 and West Boundary Road.  Although this approach bears no established trail, there are few summit rewards quite like the one offered by climbing Mount Scott's east side.

Mount Scott from West Boundary Road
At 7 AM I grabbed the pup and we hit the road. By 9:30 we had parked at 6,200 feet off forest road 2308. The mosquitoes were out in force, so we wasted no time getting moving.

Crossing the park boundary

At 7,000 feet we crested the southeast ridge and Mount Scott's summit became visible

Checking out the view

Around 8,000 feet we began to see patchy snow even on the southerly aspects

Eventually we converged with the trail from Rim Drive, which we followed the rest of the way to the summit

First glimpse of glassy Crater Lake from the Mount Scott trail

Mount Scott Summit and Lookout

Panorama of Crater lake from the summit ridge

Whitebark pine

While I was on the summit, a spectacular fire rainbow appeared in the clouds above me (it is neither a rainbow nor fire)

The view from the summit was sort of a trip down memory lane. Here is McLoughlin, which I skied two weeks ago....

... and Thielsen, which I skied two months ago.  Also visible were Mount ShastaSouth Sister, and Mount Bailey.

Scott's northwest-facing cirque on the left

After lingering on the summit for a while, I skied the northeast bowl with the pup galloping after me

We managed a thousand vertical feet of lightly cupped corn turns...

...and another thousand feet of vertical through the trees.  This required some creative routefinding.

Finally, I was forced to dismount and we bushwacked our way through the trees back to the car

Happy dog

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