My first trip report here so hopefully this goes well.
I had been wanting to do this route for a while, but it requires a shuttle so I had to wait for a good partner. A few 14ers.com people expressed interest back in August but I wasn't able to find a date that worked for a group of people. Then Unclegar sent me a PM that he wanted to do it and we settled on September 30th.
Here's the route. Start at Chapin Pass TH and end at Lawn Lake TH, so you need to set up a shuttle. From Chapin Pass TH, traverse the Mummy Range to Hagues Peak, hitting the summits of Mt Chapin, Chiquita Mountain, Ypsilon Mountain, and Fairchild Mountain on the way. From Hagues, you have the option to hit Rowe Peak and Rowe Mountain (and, as it turns out, unranked, unofficially named "Gibralter Mountain") before going over to Mummy Mountain. Then you descend east and south to the Lawn Lake trail for a 6 mile hike back to the Lawn Lake TH. Our total distance was about 18 miles, we hit seven 13ers (four ranked) and one 12er. Total climbing?? Using the track from my Garmin and Basecamp elevation profile, I'd say it was at least 5100 feet.
We met at the Lawn Lake TH at about 5am, left my car there, and drove up Old Fall River Rd to the Chapin Pass TH, where we donned our headlamps and started hiking at about 5:55 am. First light and sunrise lit the way before we reached our first peak, Mount Chapin (12,454 ft). There was a well-established trail most of the way.
After Chapin, we descended a bit before starting the climb up Chiquita's talus and tundra slope. All Class II to this point.
Unclegar on Chiquita
Wind shelter on Chiquita, Rawah mountains in the distance
From Chiquita, it's a small descent and then a longer climb up to Ypsilon Mountain, our first ranked 13er of the day. Still all class II. The sun was well up over the horizon by now and so the views were great. We got nice views of the well hidden Spectacle Lakes along the way.
Spectacle Lakes (photo by Unclegar)
The route from Ypsilon to Fairchild crosses a nice little ridge with some mild Class III down-climbing and some minor exposure, especially if you follow the crest of the ridge. The ascent up Fairchild is steep with occasional loose rock, but nothing too complicated. Along the way you get some great views of the Desolation Peaks to the west.
Unclegar on the ridge between Chiquita and Fairchild
Me on the ridge (photo by Unclegar)
From the descent down Fairchild, you get a great view of the next task on the route, the steep ascent up Hagues Peak, which involved some Class III scrambling.
Unclegar descending Fairchild
Hagues and Mummy
Unclegar ascending Hagues with Crystal lakes in the background
Signing the register on Hagues, smoke from the Cow Creek fire in the distance
From Hagues Peak we had to make a decision. You can either descend toward the east and head straight toward Mummy Mountain, or you can descend north in order to bag Rowe Peak and Rowe Mountain. I was feeling tired and not totally confident in the ability of my knees to handle the extra climbing and descending, but Unclegar convinced me to go for it. And then I goofed up the route finding. We made it over to Rowe Peak, just above Rowe Glacier and Rowe Glacier Lake.
Rowe Glacier and Lake
And then without thinking and without checking my GPS which contained all the key waypoints, I directed us east toward the unranked and unofficially named "Gibralter Mountain." By the time we realized my error, we were on Gibralter and I wasn't real keen on correcting the mistake and heading over to Rowe Mountain (another unranked 13er) since it was already getting pretty late. So we skipped Rowe Mountain and started to head toward Mummy Mountain, our last climb of the day.
Note: "Gibralter Mountain" Not Rowe Mountain!
Cow Creek Fire
Lawn Lake from Mummy Mountain
From Mummy we descended toward the Black Canyon Trail, and then to the Lawn Lake Trail. We reached the trail with some daylight left. We made it about half way to the car before it got dark.
Total hiking time was over 14 hours, more than I thought it would take us, but it was worth it.
Here's a 30 second video of the view from Hagues Peak
Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
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