The Boothill: Skechers Rugged Industrial Hikers… again!

What’s a hiker to do when the going gets rugged and industrial?

Strap on a pair of Skechers…


25 OCT 2018 – 04 APR 2019

Like I said in the obituary for the last pair, I happened to be near a Fred Meyer one day and decided to pop in and replace my previous pair of Rugged Industrial Hikers which were sufficiently dilapidated.

Out of the box these things are comfortable for a work boot with a safety toe. A nice plus!

… and at a price point of around $70 USD things can only get better! right?

27 NOV 2018

It was pouring today, so thought I’d mention that these things do not grip in the rain. I’m sliding all over the pavement.

No shit; on a steep enough grade I’d just be along for the ride if one of these 2 yard dumpsters decided to take off down a steep Seattle hill!

Just skidding on my boots pulled along by several hundred pounds of booze bottles and Amazon boxes.

Sometimes you just gotta go down with the dumpster.

04 DEC 2018

It’s been getting frosty in the mornings. My hands have been getting rather cold just using the company supplied blue atlas gloves, but thus far the RIH’s are keeping my feet warm and dry. We have yet to get hit with frozen precipitation.

11 DEC 2018

Officially taking on water today. Not much though, didn’t really notice until I took my boots off, but seems to be coming in right around where shoe and sole meet.

14 FEB 2019

Valentine’s day, and I’m SO not in love with these boots!

They have so many leaks at this point my feet get soaked in a light rain.

Why haven’t I replaced them by now?

Well, because I’m a cheapskate! … and my time as a garbage man is coming to an end in early April, so I’m gonna let the RIHs run for a little while longer.

Here in the Great Northwest, we’ve been getting hammered with record setting snow. It’s made collecting the garbage next to impossible, and is likely to see me lose my soggy feet to TRENCH FOOT because these rugged industrial hikers have held up like frail geriatric shufflers!

12 MAR 2019

One time I found a booklet on hospice care in the garbage. Inside there was a section that talked about how when people begin to pass away, they might begin to see people and places long past, and interact with a world not visible to anyone else in the room.

I thought “That’s fascinating; perhaps it’s like the soul separating from the physical body. Like briefly inhabiting two worlds simultaneously.”

Guess that must be where my right boot is at, because it’s sole began separating last week.

Really hoping that Gorilla Tape can tether the soul of my boot sole to the physical realm just a little longer!

Hold strong brave boot, soon your struggles will forever pass…

04 APR 2019

The day is finally here, the contract is over and I’m no longer a garbage man.

On the way to my car, I unceremoniously chucked my seriously compromised pair of Rugged Industrial Hikers in the trash compactor.

Honestly I’m feeling pretty cold about that, kinda wish I’d done something special for them like maybe filled ’em with flowers and set ’em ablaze, but its too late for that now, so I wrote a poem instead:

“They weren’t the best boots, but weren’t the worst. They weren’t the last, and weren’t the first. Many boots I have owned, some held up, but these got pwned.”


Northwest Wave Watching

Got down on the Oregon Coast for a few days in mid December, and happened to catch some wild waves in Depoe Bay, OR.

High tides and howling winds battered the shoreline, spattering storm watchers and sending seawater onto vehicles traveling along the highway 101.

A Horn that Spouts?

Depoe Bay’s waterfront features an interesting natural feature called a “spouting horn”. Basically it’s a small opening on the top of a sea cave… kinda like a whale’s blowhole!

It works when a sufficiently powerful wave is focused into the cave, sending a geyser of seawater out of the “spouting horn” and high into the air.

To catch the wildest waves, one must become a sort of amateur oceanographer and meteorologist, watching and waiting for a perfect storm of high tide and raging seas.

Forty feet or better if it was a foot!

Watching the undulating waves is mesmerizing; one might feel like an aspiring sea psychic, looking to the waves for clues to predict when the spouting horn will emit it’s mightiest Neptunian toots.

Transfixed, I watched as wave after wave collided. Then as a deep trough in the pattern opened up and was suddenly filled by a rushing cataclysm of saltwater and seafoam, forcing thousands of gallons into the sea cave below.

A rainbow of rain slicker clad revelers had gathered, marveling in a hushed awe as the resulting jet of ivory exploded from the spouting horn and into the stormy heavens.


Their trance broken by the visceral slap of the salty geyser coming back down onto the rocks. Even over the enveloping roar of wind and wave, the satisfying slap drew the applause of the brine faced onlookers. Who are they clapping for?!

Respite from the sideways rain was fleeting, but the unwavering crowd stood steadfast against the storm. I was wearing blue jeans and they were SOAKED, so I was ready to go!

Just north of town there was a miraculous break in the tempestuous weather, which enticed us to pull over at Boiler Bay to catch a deceptively warm looking sunset.


Winter brings the King Tides to the northwest; extreme high tides that occur beginning in early winter.

If these tides happen to coincide with some ugly weather…

There will be some waves! …and possibly serious erosion and flooding.

Be aware!

The first surge was from Dec 21st – 23rd, but they’ll be two others in the coming months:

January 20-22 will bring the second round of King Tides to northwest beaches.

February 18-20 will be the last chance to catch the King Tides until the next winter!


‘King Tides’ would make a pretty good local sports team name!

Any northwest coastal town looking for a new moniker? Coos Bay? Illwaco? How about Edmonds?

“It’s a King Tides kind of day!”

(you’d have to be familiar with the Edmonds town bumper sticker.)

Who says it’s gotta be a coastal town? How about Moses Lake King Tides? or Grand Coulee King Tides?!

Wait! Moses Lake Potato Lords! Now that’s a team name if I’ve ever heard one!

…and I don’t even like sports!


Pratt Mountain 5099′

To many visitors, Pratt Mountain, or simply “The Pratt” as it’s called by woodland hipsters, appears to be a giant heap of talus rising from the montane forest…

…and it pretty much is.


(From Talapus Lake TH)

  • 2400ft / 730m gain
  • 10mi / 16km round trip
  • <0.5mi/0.8km offtrail



“The Pratt” composes the north east buttress of a high plateau which holds a number of popular alpine lakes just north of the I90. Especially popular on summer weekends!

The shortest distance approach is from Talapus Lake trailhead, but can be also accessed from Ira Spring TH or Granite Mountain TH, whatever way you choose, you’ll want to end up around Rainbow Lake.

Rising behind the lake is the southwest face of Pratt Mountain; the aforementioned giant pile of talus. A non technical, but talus-y ascent awaits you.

Along the trail just east of Rainbow Lake, a handful of foot paths head up through trees to these rocky slopes, where one can contour northwest along the ridge to the summit.

There’s a good view of the surrounding peaks from the top o’ the Pratt. Just south one might be able to spy hikers atop Bandera Mountain, or yonder east at the Granite Mountain Fire Lookout.

Throw them a wave, or give em the bird! It’s basically the same gesture at this distance!


A round trip up “The Pratt” can be done as a day trip, but for those who like to stretch it out, there are ample camping opportunities.

There are nine lakes of size in the area, many with established campsites. During the summer months some of these lakes can be very popular with campers, so treat your water, and plan accordingly.


Make yourself a “Pratt Bratt” t shirt to commemorate your ascent! Fabric safe puffy paint works great!

A Sharpie marker works too, if you’re a habitual half ass.

I have a strong feeling that such a shirt could even help you make friend (s)!


You’ll need a Northwest Trail Pass to park at either the Talapus Lake TH or Ira Spring TH or you might get a ticket.

A self issued wilderness pemit is required for travel in wilderness areas, and is usually available at the trailhead.


Pratt Bratt pics 19NOV2018

Fungus Debriefing #3

Walking ’round Waptus River for a few days in October

A mishmash of mushrooms grew from the dampened earth, but only a few were of the edible sorts. Saw one gigantic bolete, but so had the worms!

Flushes of amanita muscarina were seen along the way with their vibrant caps adding a toadstool touch to the kaleidoscope of fall color.

Amanita muscarina, viewed from above in the header picture, is an easily identifiable mushroom in the fall forest. In spanish these toxic toadstools are sometimes called “matamoscas” , which loosely translates to “fly killer”.

Mosca is spanish for fly, and originates from the latin musca, from where we get, muscarina.

In English the mushrooms are sometimes called fly amanitas or fly agaric.

The term agaric comes from ancient Greek and refers to a broad group of mushrooms which bear a cap, gills and a stem.

Basically an agaric is what 99% of people would draw if they got mushroom as a Pictionary clue. Close your eyes, think ‘mushroom’. Yep, that one.

…but why the fly?

Seems that in ye olde dayes, the colorful mushrooms were dried and sprinkled into milk which would be left out to spoil. The poisonous curdled concoction would then draw the little moscas in for a drink of doom.

Anyway, that’s a little bit about muscas, moscas y muscarinas… Not that you asked.

Later wandering led to the discovery of some intriguing white mushroom buds erupting from the forest floor in a rather straight line of staggered clumps.

These were collected and later identified as Matsutakes. Bonus!



Went for a jaunt around a favorite haunt…

Lot of inedible russulas springing from the duff, some had sprung well before I got there, probably with the recent rains. Now they decayed where they stood.

I got fooled by more than a few big leaf maple leaves that fit the right color and shape of a chantrelle, starkly gold against the shade of the heavy forest canopy. At least from a distance.

Despite the maple’s ruse (I bet that ol’ tree was just laughing it’s mossy wooden ass off!) I managed to pluck a few handfuls of chantrelles from the duff as well as a surprise trio of lobsters.

Got home and threw the whole lot of em into the dehydrator! Destined to be added to backpacking soup!

○••••••••••¡clic for more pics!•••••••••••○

Monte Pugh en Otoño

Took a jaunt up Mount Pugh 23SEP2018…

Trail was in quite good condition, with perhaps only a couple minor obstacles.

Ran into a few parties along the way; maybe ten humans and a dog in total.

Light snow started after the knife ridge, at about 6100′.

At the summit there was an inch or so of snow, and a vista socked in by water vapor.

Views began to give way on the trip down, when the cloud level finally rose a couple thousand feet off ground level.

Fall colors were in abundance.

Besides the humans and their canine, a few pikas were the only wildlife to note.

☆☆☆☆Klick for more pics!☆☆☆☆

Fungus Debriefing #1

2018SEP16: The preceding weeks brought some rain to the western mountains, a good sign to the savvy mushroomer.

Vine maple leaves were beginning to turn; reds and yellows. Sometimes the clash of colors appeared like a still life wildfire burning up the hillsides.

Manic weather dumped a few solid sheets of rain before ebbing into a mixed nebula of moisture. A benevolent window opened up later in the day, seemingly rewarding all those who rode it out.

My first finds were some soggy lobster mushrooms; not impressive, but at least I knew they were out there.

“Missed ’em by a week!”

This was a repeating phrase I heard in my head as I started the hike to another area I knew to be productive in the past.

When I got there I immediately ran into more soggy lobsters poking up out of the duff.

“Told ya, missed em by a week!”

Not far away, at the base of a young Douglas fir, I spotted a large cauliflower mushroom. The outer lobes seemed clean and free of infestation.

Harvesting only the choicest parts of the big mushroom, I thought it best to leave much of the fungal mass remaining to do it’s thing.

After that it seemed my luck took a little upturn and I scared up a few lobsters in prime shape. I also discovered a pair of chantrelles; one yellow and one white.

No big wildlife sightings, but the ruffed grouse were abundant.

More pics: Fungus Debriefing


LOC: A-1,2

Klahhane Crash Landing

While perusing the Internet one day, I happened to read about a small plane crash that had occurred somewhere along Klahhane Ridge on 03MAY2018. So of course, I had to go have a look…


Eleven days later I made the drive out to Port Angeles and headed for the ridgetops.

There was still some snow to contend with along the “Switchback Trail” up to the top of the ridge, but a solidly stomped path led the way until I began to ascend untrammled snow more directly uphill.

On the way up I was preoccupied with speculation on where the wreck might be. This is steep, rugged terrain! It probably wasn’t going to be easy to find this thing!

However, as luck would have it, just as I was leaning into the last few steps up to the ridgeline I heard the unmistakable phump, phump, phump of a helicopter.

Atop the ridge, I stood on the lip of a brilliant, ivory bowl overlooking the Strait of Joey De Fuca. The iconic orange paint of a Coast Guard helicopter immediately caught my eye against the glaring bright of the snow.

The chopper was just lifting off from the alpine slopes as I set down my bag for a brief respite. I quickly noticed the crumpled Cessna not far away from where the chopper left the ground.

The helicopter initially left in the direction of the water, but gained altitude as it turned around and flew over top of me. I waved and watched as they circled westward around the rocky summit of Mt.Angeles before heading north toward the guard station at Ediz Hook.

A boot path across the snowy field passed near the downed aircraft. Just off the trail, an FAA sign warned against approaching within 50yds of the “active investigation site”.

Immediately I was struck by the name “Rite Bros” emblazoned on the rudder. Ironic enough.

According to the article, the pilot, who was flying alone, survived the early morning crash landing and climbed to the ridge top, where he was airlifted out.

I, on the other hand will be walking back, since I seem to have missed the last helicopter!

At this point, who knows how long the wreck of the “Rite Flyer” will sit atop Klahhane Ridge. I guess until someone gets it down from there, ’cause it certainly ain’t flying out on it’s own!

Maybe they should just leave it up there, after all it makes for an interesting hiking destination!

Happy Trails!


Escape from Eclipse-ageddon


Met up with Nealbobwalks at the Foss Lakes trailhead, where he was waiting on the picnic table, on which he had also spent the night…

“Lot of cars for a Friday”, I said as I glanced around. I handed Neal a hot cup of coffee I’d picked up in Skykomish. Dora, his dog, almost knocked it out of my hand as she threw up her paws in her wild way of greeting.

“Eh, everyone’s probably camped at Trout Lake!”

When we got to Trout Lake we set down our packs for a quick breather, instantly noting the lack of people.

“Huh… probably all up at Copper?”

Further up in the hills we passed by Copper Lake where we also saw no one. Little Heart and Big Heart Lake also seemed to be devoid of obvious campers. Maybe the trailhead was overflow parking for the eclipse!

Leaving Big Heart, I felt a tinge of concern that there’d be a large party camped out at Chetwoot…

“Last summer a ranger told me the kids are getting out further these days, bypassing Trout Lake, even Copper…”

We were buying the hype, maybe. In any case, “I know a place there won’t be nobody, follow me!”

I knew of an old fisherman’s trail along the way to Chetwoot, but had never followed it. In theory, it’d end up somewhere along Lake Angeline.

We picked up the trail just off the main route and followed it through thigh deep blueberry, then steeply downhill where the bootpath mostly dissolved under duff and dead fall.

“We’re almost there, I bet!”

After a little bit of bush beating we arrived at Lake Angeline just as daylight was giving way to dusk and as the clouds lookin like they might dump a little rain. The wind had even picked up enough to hamper my attempts to cast for dinner.

We set up camp at a site that seemed like it was popular at one time, evidenced by an ample dirt clearing to set up tents and a concentric mound of ash and rusted debris.


From Angeline to Necklace Plateau via Iron Cap Traverse

Wind had hung around into the morning, but the overcast skies had began to let a bit of blue shine through. A bank of clouds forced it’s way through the rocky, narrow gap at the north end of the lake.

The clouds poured across, leaving a light chop on the water before them, each nebulous form unfurling like a wild, shapeshifting dancer. Man, this is some GOOD-ASS coffee...

We took a short break at Chetwoot Lake, with not a soul in sight. After a few minutes of absorbing the pleasant breeze it was onto a round of boulder hopping to Iron Cap Lake. It was there we finally ran into a pair of hiking humans.

“¡Hola! Taking the “Hi-Route“, Huh?

“High route? No, we’re staying low…”

They described their intended route as “low along the shelves” of Iron Cap Mountain. The route Nealbob and I were taking by contrast was up several hundred feet to the ridge then down through Iron Cap Pass.

“Hey! You know it’s good luck to drink from the lake before going up ol’ Iron Cap… Cup o’ the Gods it is!”

They smiled and went upon their way.

“Shoulda drank the water, I’m tellin ya”

Having passed by this way before, our journey through the pass went a lot more smoothly than it had on my first attempt.

As we traversed the eastern flanks of Iron Cap, we’d throw back glances for the other party, but they were nowhere to be seen… Maybe they got eaten by the Iron Cap Balrog!

We continued along talus and bare rock in the cool shadow cast by the ridge above us. From the top of a cliffy buttress, we saw a flash of colorful parka far behind us.

Good! Guess they must have found a way through the low road…

Talus and rock hopping soon gave way to pleasant meadow meandering, as we made our way up to the high grounds of the Necklace Valley.

We ended the day a stone’s throw from the Tank Lakes. There was a goodly crowd dispersed closer to the water, but there was still plenty of solitude to be found amongst the stark pale rock of the basin.


Necklace Plateau to La Bohn Gap via Williams Lake

The night was crisp and cool, stripping the last vestiges of work and the city from my mind during a very quenching sleep. Humans began to stir and draw water from the lake as the sun rose in the sky.

We got off to a leisurely start with breakfast, coffee and gear talk. It was probably after 8 by the time we started packing up our kits and setting out for Williams Lake.

On our way off of the plateau some lady started walking towards us. “Oh hey!” It was half of the duo we ran into the day before. She revealed that they’d indeed gone via some low route, and from the sounds of it, they had one hell of a time. She did not recommend it.

The route to Williams Lake wasn’t particularly perilous, we found our way through the brush and descended a few cliff bands down to lake level.

Williams Lake had the feeling of a place that spends most of it’s time alone… well except for the bears, of whom there was ample evidence.

Continuing east we made way toward an adit marked on the USGS map. At the adit we stopped to investigate and relax a spell.

Next to the waterlogged cavern, a narrow path led up the mountain side. This seemed the logical path to follow.

The rough trail headed up rather directly and varied in quality between clear, but narrow footpath, to bare scramble up scars of loose dirt, rocks, and roots.

The last bit into the Chain Lakes Basin was on large, white boulders and fairly tame comparatively.

“Holy Shit, what in the hell happened here!?”

Those were literally the words that came out of my mouth as I laid eyes on the Chain Lakes Basin.

At some point in the past, a mining operation was attempted here and what was left behind looks a bit like Superfund site left in the middle of nowhere.

A confluence of two streams meet up at the lower end of the basin; along the banks of one stream grew luscious green grasses and vibrant mountain wildflowers. The other stream was deeply stained with rusty toned oxides. The only thing growing near it was a thin layer of defiant moss.

The source of this rust is a significant pile of waste rock and ore that was simply dumped into one of the small alpine lakes.

I wandered around investigating the various ruins and heaps of glistening ore while Nealbob and Dora headed up the treeless slopes for La Bohn Gap where we planned to rest up before going up Hinman.

“Be up in a bit!”


Mt. Hinman and out the Necklace Valley

At dawn we woke and got moving to ascend Hinman and observe the eclipse, safe from the roiling bent-necked hordes and predicted traffic catastrophe.

We began our ascent up the southwest ridge with the plan that if we ran into anything the dog couldn’t handle, we’d call it good.

Dora, “dog o’ the hills” must have taken this as a challenge as she skilfully navigated the scramble sections and the endless shattered rock with the ease of a mountain goat.

Above us the great astral dance had begun, casting an unusual hue upon the surrounding high country, however even at the height of the phenomenon, we never even got close to darkness.

On the plus side we had the whole place to ourselves!

Across the remnants of a glacier and shattered rock we made our way to the summit.

Wind was howling as we ascended the final pile of busted rock to a spot near enough the top of the 7492′ stone behemoth.

Whoa. I’m so glad I’m not sitting in eclipse traffic right now.

Wind whistled through the ridge rocks, but beyond that silence reigned at the summit. The vast vistas on this absolutely clear day momentarily transcending any words.

The descent back down the massive mountain was jubilant and spirits were high. Perfect for steep hike down from La Bohn Gap and the long walk out of the Necklace Valley.

“What’s it? 15 or better? I dunno, but we’ll probably make the cars by dark…”

“Oh man, we should have totally parked one car at the other trailhead!”

Next Time!


A Little South of Bessemer Mountain

Not so much a mountain climb, rather a long, long mountain walk. Even moreso on snowshoes!


  • Approx 12mi RT, 4000′ gain
  • Snowshoes handy after 3500’ish
  • Trailhead is basically a gate with barely anywhere to park.
  • Beautiful views, few people!


There was only one vehicle parked at the trailhead when I arrived. Two sets of footprints headed up the gated road.

A little more than a mile out, the road hits the old CCC road. Here I followed the CCC road right for around a quarter mile. At that point I turned uphill, while the CCC road continues into the forest.

Not long after, a scale house for a small quarry appears on the right. The road makes four switchbacks after this bend before making a long line northeast.

Frozen puddles and sparse, crunchy snow progressively transformed into powder as the steps went by…

At about 3200′ I broke from the main road and followed the tracks up what is marked as a 4×4 road on the maps.

When I got up to 4000′ I broke off onto untrammled snow in the direction of a borrow pit approximately in between South Bessemer and pt. 4965. Had a bite to eat and considered heading towards pt. 4965, but the pre-stomped trail going up South Bessemer was a little more appealing.

Speaking of those tracks, I ran into their creators not long after my stop at the borrow pit. Met them at about 4300′, where the following transpired:

“You’ll see the tracks split up ahead; Go Left! We went right and ended up scrambling steep snow to the top. That’s when we noticed the easy way down. Go Left!”

Indeed, just a few hundred feet below the summit at another snow covered borrow pit, the traveler’s tracks split. I took their advice and went left.

Wind was blowing pretty good at the top, so I didn’t hang around too long, but spun around enough to take in the vast Middle Fork views.


Brrr! It was getting cold, but luckily it got a whole lot less windy coming down.

The snow covered trees and icy hills began to glow in golden light as the sun disappeared behind the cold haze of the horizon.

The light gave up the ghost with a few miles left to go. I draped my headlamp around my neck, but never turned it on.

A sliver of moon and the twinkle of stars glinted off the frozen road way; a ghostly, guiding iridescence in the indifferent cold of winter…

“Oh hey, headlights! Woot!”


  • Snowshoes were very handy, if not required.
  • A mountain bike could be used to reduce some of the walking time.
  • Many more miles of snowy road to explore, Pt.4965 appears to be a good snowshoe objective as well.


A Discover Pass is currently required to park at the sparse trailhead.


Burnt Mountain Loop (Trip Report)

This trip begins the day after my visit to “Mine Tunnel Hill”


I set up my kit along the lonely logging road passing by the little pond. The area didn’t really lend itself to good camping. 

As night fell, frogsong filled the still mountain silence. Throughout the evening sweet nothings were exchanged across the tannic waters, love was in the air. 

When dawn broke, I began to cook up some coffee. During my patient wait for the water to boil, I gathered up the shredded bits of old lawn furniture, beer cans and pieces of an old TV set that befouled the space.


Just after the outfall of the small pond there is a fork in the road. I’d already gone one way, why not try the other?

Gaining a few hundred feet over about a half mile, I intersected with a road heading back up towards Burnt Mountain Ridge. 

The route travels along another logging road above the ponds below. I’m sure it would have been a pleasant view, but when I was passing through, so was a whole lot of cloud. 

I came to a rather wide corner which seemed the logical point to jump back onto the ridge to catch my route in. Took a break then traveled light along the road towards the summit. 

On the way up it was so cloudy I could have been out on the coast and not known the difference. Though “white oblivion” has it’s own kind of charm.  

The road ends below the summit, but with total cloud cover obscuring any long view, I thought I’d save it for next time

As I traveled back down, soaking in the fog,  something caught my eye. The shimmering, snaking ribbon of the Carbon River appeared below my feet. What a sight! 

I found a nice spot along the road next to some vigorous growing phlox where I watched and waited for windows through the otherwise opaque vapor. 


While traveling through the forest along the ridge I saw a pretty promising trail and decided to follow it a ways, as it was heading down.

With a lot of semi recent cut work visible and a few scattered flags it was hard to pass up. However, it ended up in a cliffy section that I didn’t wanna hassle with. So I went back up a couple hundred feet to traverse to my route in. 

Skirting the base of a couple talus fields along the way saved a lot of beating the bushes. In little time I was back at the landing and in for three miles of logging roads, and wouldn’t you know it? Now the clouds had broken!


  • Approx 12mi loop, 2mi off trail
  • Bugs of minor annoyance. 
  • Lots of wildlife sign. 
  • You’ll be wanting a map/navigation device.
  • Should be pretty great views with clear weather. 


Not too much hub bub, besides the singing birds, the croaking chorus of mountain frogs… and the deer baby! 

While I was coming down the hill a mama and fawn were coming up. She saw me and bounded up the hill, the baby was hiding in the ditch. 

I knew this to be normal deer behavior, so was not concerned. I walked by quickly and quietly, taking a couple pictures as I passed, leaving baby bambi in peace. 


It would seem to me that the best route to the summit road would be:

From the landing head uphill and east, gaining towards a pair of talus clearings at the 4000′-4200′ level, then traverse east until you run into a recognizable, but very steep trail to the road. 

While the trip over the ridge to the ponds, you’d be better heading straight up the first talus field, and between the pair of bumps at the top. See map. 

(The dip in the red track indicates where I followed that steep trail to cliffs, perhaps it continues beyond…)


Burnt Mountain, Pierce County, WA, USA