Last weekend I finally made it back to Krag Peak. Back in 2010 I hiked past Krag Peak on my way to Red Mountain, I honestly thought it wouldn’t take this long to check the peak off the list. The problem with the peak was its location relative to the other peaks left to climb in the Wallowas. It’s located on the east side of the West Eagle Creek so the route to the peak is isolated from the other peaks I have left to climb.
For once I wasn’t alone on the climb, a coworker and friend Will tagged along for the nice late June trip. We left town at 1pm on Friday and didn’t arrive at the Summit Lookout trailhead until almost 5pm. Our hike in consisted of an up and down hike along a well maintained trail for about 7.5 miles and by 8:30 we arrived at our camp location, Crater Lake (No not that Crater Lake). The lake was still partially covered in ice and snow, but with the warm summer temperatures it won’t stay that way long. After filtering water and a quick dinner we slid into our tents for the night.
Our Saturday began under a clear blue sky around 5:30am with my breakfast consisting of a few almonds and a cliff bar. We were off and climbing by 6 up the lower southeast ridge which leads to the summit of Krag Peak. The lower ridge consisted of semi open slopes with the occasional rock band and within an hour we were standing on the fairly long upper section of the ridge looking toward the summit of the peak. There’s a large basin to the northeast of the peak which was still covered in snow, but for the most part the top of the ridge was bare. We crossed the ridge in less than an hour and before long we were standing on top of the peak. The views were amazing, to the south the Baker Valley and to the north the Wallowa Mountains. We chilled on top for almost thirty minutes before turning around and heading back down the ridge to camp.
Back at camp, we filtered a little water and packed up and within an hour we were on the trail back to Summit Lookout. The hike out was uneventful and we were back at the car in a couple hours.
71 down, 29 to go!