Jeff and I, or as we call ourselves, ‘The Knights Who Say Scree’, continued our ascent of minor summits on the Livingstone Range by hiking up Hailstone Butte and GR808674 or “Iron Creek Mt.” as Bob Spirko has called it. Hailstone is a very short and easy scramble, but when done in the snow, is perhaps an even more enjoyable experience. I’d also never hiked up to a fire lookout before, so I was looking forward to seeing one up close. Without the snow, I’m not sure how scenic the views would have been, so the snow definitetly added to the day. I would however, suggest that Hailstone is perfect for anyone who wants to try scrambling for the first time as the distance is short and the scrambling easy enough to get your feet wet.
Our route as marked on Google Earth.
Our elevations gains and distance travelled.
Some old trees stretch out to meet Hailstone’s wintery slopes.
It is a short scramble to the fire lookout on the summit. You can just see the lookout tower poking over the summit on the right.
A pack of wolves had crossed Hailstone’s slopes not long before we did. Judging by the number of track paths, there must have been 7-10 wolves. All of their tracks were very large in diameter.
Looking up to the south summit of Hailstone.
Wolf tracks came straight down from the rock band.
We had awesome weather when we were sheltered from the wind. When we were exposed to the wind, we had to quickly put on our full face gear as our skin would freeze within a few minutes.
The summit of Hailstone is not too impressive, but fun to do in the snow.
Some kind of scientific monitoring equipment below the summit.
Though covered in snow, the rock band to the top wasn’t too slippery to scramble up.
The fire lookout appears.
Jeff stops to take a picture with the south summit of Hailstone behind him.
The Hailstone Butte fire lookout. I wonder what it’s like to live in that during a thunder storm or when the wind is whipping at over 100km/hr?
Jeff tramps through the snow to the top. Behind him and beneath the rock band, you can see several wolf tracks in the snow.
The sign on the fire lookout.
Looking north from the lookout toward Mt. Burke (centre), Sentinel Peak (right of centre) and Iron Creek Mt. (right).
My GPS seems to think we are 9m lower than what the sign says. I may have to do some recalibrations on it…
Standing on the lookout. I guess I didn’t read the sign too carefully…. but there was no one around to invite me onto the lookout.
Not our best summit shot, but the snow definitely added to the scenery.
Heading to “Iron Creek Mountain” which is barely visible behind the trees in front of Jeff.