Ridge West of Shealor Lakes


Summary

Difficulty 4 Intermediate-advanced
Length 4.8 miles round trip
Starting
Elevation
7950 feet
Cumulative
Elevation
Change
+1250, -1250 feet
Navigation Road and map
Time Most of a day
Season Early December through mid-April
Snowmobiles Low use
USGS Topo 7.5' series, Tragedy Spring
Start On the north side of Highway 88 at Tragedy Spring, 9.0 miles east of Peddler Hill Maintenance Station and 2.9 miles west of the Silver Lake dam.


Description

Almost from the get-go you find yourself on a ridge that you follow to an abrupt drop into the Shealor Lakes drainage. Unlike most tours, you climb 200 feet in the first 1.0 mile to the highest point and then descend 950 feet in the following 1.4 miles. As a result the return trip is a big climb!

Image after exiting tree
The slope lessens after exiting trees

The descent is a mix of steep terrain through trees that requires the ability to turn quickly and more modest open terrain. As you might expect, after a storm you are likely to find powder in the wooded section of the ridge and scoured terrain in the open section.

Image along ridge
Fresh powder on ridge

Although you will have an outstanding view of Pyramid Peak to the north for much of the tour and other vistas, this tour does not match the sheer beauty of the Shealor Lakes and Silver Fork Ridge tour to the east of Shealor Lakes. Instead this tour provides you with significantly more exhilaration. That said, ski this tour when you are assured of good snow on the steep sections.

You can turn this tour into a one-way tour by returning to Highway 88 via the route described in the Tragedy Spring to Maidens Grave tour.

Image of windswept ridge
Windswept section of ridge

Mileage Log
Numbers in parentheses
correspond to mileage points on map

Miles: 0.0 - 0.1
Elevation change: -50 feet

From the trailhead (1) ski northwest on a snow-covered road for 0.1 mile until you reach a location where you can easily leave the road to the north (2). The location where you leave the road is not critical. However, leave the road at a small sign on the right-hand side of the road indicating a buried fiberoptic cable if it is visible.

Miles: 0.1 - 0.3
Elevation change: +100 feet

Turn north and ascend for 0.2 mile until you reach a saddle (3).

Miles: 0.3 - 1.0
Elevation change: +100 feet

Ski northwest, then southwest and finally west on a broad ridge for a total of 0.7 mile until you reach Peak 8096 (4) and the highpoint of the tour.

Image of skiing near Peak 8096
Easy skiing near Peak 8096

Miles: 1.0 - 1.6
Elevation change: +50, -550 feet

Descend northwest on ridge, which is now narrow, through trees for 0.6 mile until you reach Peak 7617 (5). Do not make the mistake of turning west just before reaching Peak 7617.

Image looking west
Looking west from ridge

Miles: 1.6 - 2.4
Elevation change: -400 feet

Ski north along the ridge for 0.8 mile until you reach the location where the ridge drops abruptly into the Shealor Lakes drainage (6). There are very few trees in this section and the winds can be unfriendly during storms.

Image looking down into Shealor Lakes drainage
Looking down into Shealor Lakes drainage

Miles: 2.4 - 4.8
Elevation change: +1000, -250 feet

Retrace the route for 2.4 miles back to the trailhead (1).

Elevation Profile
Elevation profile
Link to elevation profile
Link to waypoint data
Link to full page map
Link to see and submit reviews and corrections about tour