Balancing on the Brink; Eagle Peak, Alaska
Eagle Peak is a challenging day hike, involving a 10-mile appraoch over often-trailless terrain, and reaching its 6909' summit involves scrambling several thousand feet up a steep gully. To reach the peak, park at the South Fork Eagle River trailhead and walk to Eagle Lake. The standard approach is up the drainage toward Flute Glacier. Keep up against side of Eagle Peak as you near the glacier, climb over the boulder field, and then up the scree slope toward the base of the fairly-obvious southwest gully. The scree leading up to it, and the first thirty feet or so, of the gully are probably the toughest parts of the climb, but the height and remotness of the peak would make me hesitant to continue if the weather were poor or climbers were already fatigued. It's a long way to the summit. I found that the rock was very good, but that the scree slopes were generally unstable. The gully fans out toward the top, and some guide books suggest climbing the "ridge" to the summit. However, this seems like an unsafe, and really pointless, risk. Look for the small, prominent gulley that empties into the far left side of the main gully. Climb this to a narrow saddle and then make your way to the right a few dozen feet to the summit. The view is incredible; I would allot a good chunk of time to check out the surrounding peaks and the glaciers far below. But don't spend too much time up there, because after all, it's a very long trip back to the South Fork parking lot.
|Photo Location:||North_America: United_States: Alaska: Anchorage_Area_Rock___Ice: Chugach_Mountains|