Ascent of Thompson Point on 2019-02-09

Climber: Eric Gilbertson

Date:Saturday, February 9, 2019
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Thompson Point
    Elevation:5124 ft / 1561 m

Ascent Trip Report

14 miles, 5,000ft gain
Eric Gilbertson

Seattle had just gotten a few inches of snow Friday night, and when I drove out of town Saturday morning the roads were in tough shape. Even I-5 and I-90 interstates were covered in packed snow. I wanted to do a mountain close to town that avoided avy terrain and Revolution Peak fit the bill. An old logging road went almost to the summit, then a short ridge scramble would finish off the climb.

I had attempted Revolution Peak in November 2017, but the snow was deeper than expected and I was moving slow without snowshoes. I had also parked inside the gate, which closes at sunset. In order to not get locked inside the parking lot overnight I had to turn around early.

This time I started earlier (8;30am), parked outside the gate, and brought skis. The middle fork snoqualmie road was unplowed, but a few vehicles had gone before me that morning and packed down the snow. I parked outside the gate at the granite creek trailhead and started skiing from the car. There was just barely enough snow down low to cover all the rocks in the trail. I was the first one out and had the privilege of breaking trail.

High in the valley there were many streams crossing the trail that unfortunately hadn’t been filled in with snow. So unfortunately I had to remove my skis pretty often. However, the stream crossings ended after the Thompson Lake turnoff and I skinned up the old logging road in deep snow. There were occasional old snowshoe tracks, possibly from the previous weekend.

I reached Thompson Point around 1pm and surprisingly the old cabin there was gone. It was windy and cold and that’s the point where the snowshoe tracks and the logging road ended. I continued along the narrow ridge past the point, and made it to the col below Revolution Peak before it no longer made sense to continue skiing. The bushwhacking got too dense and I encountered a 3rd class step that skis would not help on.

I ditched the skis, then scrambled up and then steeply down the other side of the knife-edge step. On the other side the woods opened up again and I wished I had my skis back. I postholed through deep powder and soon reached the summit at 2pm.

It was even colder and winder, so I didn’t stay long. I retraced my postholes back to the skis, and skinned back up to Thompson Point. From there I took off the skins and had an amazing ski back down the logging road. Somehow I managed to hop across most of the stream crossings on the way down without removing my skis. I saw one fresh set of snowshoe tracks that made it a few miles up before turning around.

By 5pm I made it back to the car, just in time to not need a headlamp.
Link to full trip report and pictures.
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