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Home Forums TR Archive California Twin Peaks Freight Train Tour 4/15-17/05

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    Matt and I have been talking about getting out to Twin Peak and Matterhorn Peak for a few months now and last weekend provided the right time to get a three day weekend and get up into this beautiful country west of Bridgeport, CA.

    We recruited mtnrider and mmcpheet and met up at Twin Lakes Friday morning. They said it was a chilly night sleeping in the truck but the morning was sunny and starting to warm up.

    After packing up we hit the trail and the hardest part of the climb.

    The snow was still pretty hard and we all struggled up the slope, most of us already sweating hard and feeling the heat of the morning with full packs.

    After the first climb it was mostly smooth sailing up to camp

    Once at camp (9,400 ft) and a quick rest Matt set a track up a slope just from camp and up to an unnamed lake with great terrain features all around.

    The run down was still corn but starting to harden up in the late afternoon.

    mtnrider airs

    mmcpheet finds the soft side

    We set up camp and enjoyed the scenery and calm weather.
    Just before sunset a sick boy arrives at camp and digs a hole to sleep in.

    The next morning we awake to clear skies and fairly calm winds. We decide to head up to the Twin Peaks glacier and look for good lines.

    Skinning up a terminal moraine we can see lots of good terrain.

    sick boy with the Twin Peaks couloir behind him.

    A look down with Matt climbing up.

    Matt, mtnrider and mmcpheet went for the top of the glacier and sick boy and I contoured around to a somewhat hidden chute which was already softening up in the morning sun.

    View from our chute looking across to Twin Peaks with Matt going down.

    Sick boy steppin up

    After sick boy and I decide to stop climbing since the slope was really warming up, we drop in.

    Sick boy

    We meet up with the crew down in Horse Creek but get a few shots of mtnrider and mmcpheet first.



    Matt was ahead of us as we skinned up and could tell he had his sights set on a very nice chute protected from wind and filled with powder.

    We opted for the pass. While sick boy skinned up to the chute, we opted for two laps below.


    Matt coming out of the choke

    Sick boy goes next

    mtnrider, mmcpheet, and I head for the rock face of Horse Creek Peak and get a sweet run back to camp.

    Here’s the end of the track

    Back at camp it was all smiles and lots of digging and wall building to get ready for the night. It wasn’t that windy yet, but it was a good thing we were getting ready.

    We started seeing clouds roll over Matterhorn Peak and the winds picked up. By the middle of the night we thought we were at a train depot because the freight train of wind really started to hit. It was building through the night and by morning, after I got hardly any sleep, it was a pure wind tunnel. No one wanted to get up and once we did we realized the only riding we would be doing is with a full pack down to the car.

    I thought the run down was still fun, but others may have a different perspective. “Check me out, I’m sideslipping” was the quote of the morning. 😀

    Back at the car it was still pretty windy. We hung out in the back of mtnrider’s huge truck relaxing 😉 , then went into Bridgeport for Mexi food.

    mmcpheet and I had the longest drives but it was still well worth it. We would of loved to ride Sunday and knock off some of the lines we saw Saturday, but, oh well, there is always next time.


    @powderjunkie wrote:


    I love this shot of the upper and lower bowls…sweet, and way to get out there and get it.



    choofrickin’choo!!!! i’ve gotten drilled in that canyon a couple of times. nasty. nice to be getting blown around in a new cirque this weekend for a change, but the MegaMid fought well under ritter!
    great pix, next time gotta make my camp higher so the tour to both Twin and Matter will be shorter. great stuff!


    Sweet trip report.

    huge truck relaxing

    I like being relaxed.

    Snow Nymph

    Nice!!! 😀


    We strongly considered heading up to Twin Peaks during a trip a few weeks back. We had a great day on Horse Creek Peak never the less, but your report convinced me to stomp up into that cirque in the near future.
    Nice work! (and good skier pics too.)


    Nice shot of mmchpeet from the front…looks like he’s attacking some gates!
    I only have few shots that aren’t repeats but I’ll post them as soon as I can get ’em up on the server here @ work. 😛

    Looks like they were already in place…here we go…nothing major but just trying to contribute.

    This would be the Hotel de Mtnrider…its really relaxing due to the futon in the back 😉 Here we are about to depart on Friday morning:

    It was getting real warm out on our approach in…the last hill lies ahead before we drop the full packs @ our camp for the next couple days:

    Here is the gang stopping for lunch on Saturday before we split off and went for our chosen decent path. Hopefully mmcpheet will post a couple of his sicks shots of Sickboy and Powderjunkie hanging from there ice axes on the killer line they rode.

    Mmchpeet, Matt, and I headed for the base of this…it was getting super windy out and we tried to no avail to get out of it.

    All in all a fun trip w/ some cool people…Sunday could have held better conditions for us but its tough to complain about it when you’re out in such beautiful land.


    joesnow, you guys hit the bigger couloir in near perfect conditions the weekend before. That’s a looong day trip back that far, but the stoke of powder must have fueled you guys.


    Great pics and TR PJ!
    You’ve got an excellent photo eye. 🙂
    That area is awesome too.

    Yeah, we were on that same peak/bowl exactly 7 days earlier. What a difference some warm weather makes. We skied the main couloir in super dry powder with ice cream headaches. A week later and you guys were at the beach. You gotta love the Sierras!

    As for the trek back there. Have you done this tour on a trip other than an overnighter? I used to think it was a long way back there but I think that was because I was always carrying overnight gear. With a light daypack and an early start, it’s really not that bad in a day. I’ve been getting soft in my old age this year and have only done one bc overnighter. I’ve been opting for long days with a light load and although its been working well I’m jonesing for some spring camping.

    I’m looking to do some soon. 😀


    Yeah, the approach really isn’t that tough, except for the first part. Just a decent ways back there, and no lifters for a good portion. Day trip really has its advantages with faster approaches and more fun on the ride out.

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