White Cap Peak


We luck out in November and get to see the white quartz of White Cap Peak.

We rolled out of town a little after 4, a little after some confusion. Dave was late, so I called him, and he said he was 20 minutes away. I figured I could save some time and gas up while I waited. When I got back to the house, he was sitting in my driveway, patiently waiting (and fortunately had not rung the door bell!).

We dodged a few deer on the highway, dodged a lot of rocks on the approach in the car, and were walking at about 8:40. A gnarlier rig than my Suby would have still been driving.

Hiking the road

After walking up the road a ways, we found the faint trail leaving the switchback. About 150 feet later, we found the trail sign. With bullet holes, Brian.

Trail sign

It took us around 2 hours to get to Sawmill Pass at 9800'. After a brief discussion, we decided to head up the gully.

Looking up the gully

It's around 1500' of elevation gain. We spent the time discussing big words and PVT (it's like ROY G BIV, or Every Good Boy Does Fine, except that I can't remember the words that go with it- ask Dave).

Looking down the gully

As we neared the top of the gully, the lighting was incredible.

Davenears the top

Once on the ridge, we contoured around the north side of a bump in the ridge and finally saw the actual summit. Note the clouds blowing through. It was very nice, but we were watching the mist blow around the summit of Leatherman and other nearby peaks. Would the sunshine last?

Traversing the false summit

I'm not sure what it means when you can get to almost 12k without snow tools on November 8, but there you are.

I do know that when Dave is standing on the very highest point, it means the hard part is over.


Although the day was quite warm, there was a stiff breeze on the summit that cooled us quickly. With barely half my sandwich down, my fingers were getting stiff. So off we went. We were able to plunge step most of the snow patches, and I even did a short glissade.

It had been a beautiful day with incredible lighting. We felt very lucky to have had such a great day in the high mountains, especially in November.

After note: On the way home, there were moose in Picabo.

Dave's trip report

Mt. Borah

Mr. Natural Home | 2008 | Back to top of page | Questions :: e-mail to splattski