Mount Thielsen

Mount Thielsen Trip Report (#11451)

  • Signed By: Rick Brown
  • Date submitted: January 11, 2004

It's been a couple years, but I think I can remember how this went:

Before we broke out of the forest, near the PCT crossing, the mosquitoes were unbearable. Up higher, with more wind, they disappeared and the hike got much more pleasant.

On the way up between the PCT and the base of the summit horn, we encountered the same scree problem that a couple of the other writers have noted in their postings. But on the way down, we learned that this may have been because we were off-route, too far to the south. If you take a more northerly line--to the left as you are approaching the peak, close to the edge of a drainage between you and the west ridge of the mountain--the going is considerably easier.

The horn itself is a fun scramble, provided you have a little bit of experience on rock. It is mostly straightforward class 3, with maybe one class 4 move. But this seems to be one of those places where people with no climbing experience go just because it looks so tempting. We found a number of people up there who had no clue how they were going to get down and probably should not have been there in the first place. Fortunately I had a rope along and was able to help them out. How these crag-bound hikers manage to get down on days when no one with a rope is handy to rescue them scares me.

So if you've never done any rock climbing, consider this before you launch yourself up something vertical: getting up may look easy and tempting, but that's only half the trip. On the way down, everything looks different.

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