Mount Daniel East Peak Ski and Paint
Around 18 miles, 5200ft
July 4-5 2020
This weekend I carried my skis the longest I ever have, to the summit of Mount Daniel East Peak. When I got to the top, I realized I forgot my paint brushes. I had paper, pen and watercolor, so I did some finger painting. It was pretty funny to smear paint around with my hands and it actually worked pretty well!
I couldn’t find any recent trip reports before we decided to ski Daniel, so bringing the skis felt like a bit of a gamble. Even though we ended up carrying them all the way to Peggy’s Pond, it was worth it.
The snow started intermittently shortly after Squaw lake and consistently at Peggy’s pond. There were a few tiny dry sites to camp at by Peggy’s Pond, but we camped in snow. Peggy's pond is beautiful and we spend a happy night enjoying the views of Cathedral rock and the frozen lake.
The next morning we got a late start and started skinning up towards Daniel at 9 am. We had read a few people said they took the summer route (ridge) up to Daniel, but we took the winter route which goes straight up the valley. Snow conditions were great. We A-framed the skis for most of the steeper slopes which is basically the whole climb. That part was kind of funny, and I kept laughing at myself, the things we do for turns.
We went up the East summit, which required a short little scramble in ski boots, very exciting. We stayed at the summit for about an hour enjoying the views, painting and napping. That is when I realized I forgot my paint brushes. We debated chopping some hair off to make a brush, but I decided to try some finger painting instead. I love those moments when chaos leads you to discover something wonderful you never could have planned for.
The ski down to Peggy's Pond was so incredibly fun. Packing up camp while getting mosquito bitten was less fun. It was a long walk back to the car, carrying the skis again, but a great time.
Overall a happy weekend in the mountains!