Cirque of the Towers - Texas Pass in August

jjmcwill

Member
Joined
Aug 14, 2012
Messages
21
Just a sanity check here. If I pass through Cirque of the Towers in mid-late August, will Texas Pass be passable without the need for crampons or ice axes?

I gather from the off-trail guidebook that the answer is yes. However, I've seen some trip report photos showing some snow at the top, and I'm wondering if I should be concerned.

Thanks,

Jeff
 

Dan

Member
Joined
Feb 24, 2012
Messages
454
yes, but it depends on the snow year. august is typically fine. even if there is a little snow, it's not glacial, you can typically kick steps if you had to. should be fine.
 

lostlandscapes

rope mule
Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
328
yes, but it depends on the snow year. august is typically fine. even if there is a little snow, it's not glacial, you can typically kick steps if you had to. should be fine.

Affirmative. When I went over this past (late) July, the snowfield on the south side was easily traversed. Wait for the afternoon to warm the snow up a bit and you'll be just fine, as it's not a very steep slope. The north side, however, is a different story. No snow when we went through, but it's incredibly steep and loose. If there was any snow lingering over there, things could get hairy. Ironically, the north side doesn't hold nearly as much snow though, so I don't think you have much to worry about. Especially in August. Outstanding route.
 

jjmcwill

Member
Joined
Aug 14, 2012
Messages
21
Interesting comments about early morning conditions.

My plan is to camp near Shadow lake the day before. I wanted to get over Texas Pass early so that we'd have time to set up tents and spend the rest of the day exploring the cirque of the towers.

My itinerary puts us at Shadow Lake on the August 22nd, and going over Texas Pass early on August 23rd.

Speaking of Shadow lake - has anyone ever hiked from to Barren Lake, and NW up the ravine to Bair Peak? Judging from the contour lines, it looks like the slope isn't too bad - less steep than Illinois Pass or Texas Pass. Nancy doesn't talk about it in the book, perhaps because getting up there doesn't allow you to go anywhere else but back the way you came. However, it looks like it would be an interesting place to get a good panoramic view, and to look down onto Washakie glacier.
 
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