Ascent of Gypsy Peak on 2020-07-15

Climber: Chris Gilsdorf

Date:Wednesday, July 15, 2020
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Gypsy Peak
    Elevation:7320 ft / 2231 m

Ascent Trip Report

This mountain, in the extreme northeast corner of Washington, is supposed to be the highest summit in the state outside of the Cascades and Olympics.

The drive to the trailhead was long and a bit tedious. Potholes abound lower down, and the upper roads are a single-lane two-track with a grass center. The last two miles are a bit rougher, and you'd probably want high clearance, but a brave passenger car driver might make it to the trailhead.

I set off solo midday, armed with bear spray, music blaring from my phone, and a GPS track. I departed from the trail at around 6k and headed uphill and to climber's right on easy slopes through moderate vegetation to a basin, then up steep and initially brushy slopes that gave way to rocks and grass before reaching the saddle. There's theoretically a trail along the ridge, but you won't find much of one except for a few spots passing gendarmes on climber's right on the final ascent of Gypsy Peak.

I ended up both tagging and sidehilling every subsidary bump once for each direction of travel (I sidehilled the ranked peak on the way to Gypsy). The summit views from Gypsy were expansive, and at one point my phone thought I was in Canada! While the Selkirks were a bit hazy on this summer late afternoon, I could make out the border strip to the northwest, as well as Abercrombie and possibly Copper Butte. Views of the Selkirk Crest over in Idaho were especially striking.

I made it back to the car, no grizzlies (nor evidence thereof) sighted, in a bit under 5 hours roundtrip, retracing my steps.
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