Cascadedreams Home   >>   2006 Trips - All   >>  Star & Courtney Peaks - October
Star Peak - 8690'
Courtney Peak - 8392'
Miles RT: Elevation Gain: Rating:
21 9200' S4-T3
Map: GT - #83 Buttermilk Butte
USGS - Oval Peak
Season: fall

We all stayed in Twisp the night before, so we were able to have a nice breakfast in town before driving to the trailhead at the end of road #500.  We hiked the 7.5 miles up to and over Fish Creek Pass and dropped to Star Lake where we camped.  After setting up camp, we climbed back up to Fish Creek Pass and then scrambled Courtney Peak (Pt. 8392).  That night we turned in under a crystal clear blanket of stars and a full moon.  Later as I got up to answer the call of nature the moon had crested over Star and the whole area was lit up like mid day.  I wandered around for quite a while below camp, just amazed at how bright the night could be.
We took off from camp on the second day and followed the trail from the lake to the Star's SW ridge.  Once on the ridge, we went left and followed it to the summit.  No real problems encountered.  Descent was down the steep scree gully in front (NW) of Pt. 7912 back to the lake.  The weather was very nice and we had great views all around.
That night, I could hear the hiss of snow and the occasional scritching noise as the accumulations slid off my tarp to the ground.  Not much came down, but in the dark it's hard to tell.  So very satisfying to be toasty warm inside the bivy when it's cold enough to snow. On the last morning we hiked back down the W Fork Buttermilk Creek Trail without problem.  Except that is that the Twisp Bakery closes early on Sunday and we missed it.  Otherwise we might have done Oval on the way out.

October 6-8, 2006      
W Fork Buttermilk Creek #411  
A break along #411
Star Peak from the trail  
Oval Peak  
View NE
Fish Creek Pass - 7480'  
Star Lake
Courtney Peak
Mud shot
Star from Courtney  
Scrambling Courtney
On Courtney
On Courtney
Moon on Raven Ridge
Heading out for Star
Not much green left
Break on Star's SW ridge
Looking W
Courtney and Oval  
Raven Ridge
Star summit
The group on Star
Star Lake
Morning and snow
Low clouds at Fish Creek Pass
Trail #411
Route Map
To get to Star Peak, drive to the Methow River valley in north-central Washington and then up the Twisp River Road. At 10.8 miles on this road, turn left onto Buttermilk Creek Road and go 4.5 miles to West Fork Buttermilk Creek Road. This road heads west. At the "Y", take the left (upper) road. Shortly you will arrive at the West Fork Buttermilk Creek Trail No. 411.
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