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Old 06-28-2017, 12:25 AM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 249
Sawteeth/Gothics considerations

Hi all,

Original plan was to do Lower Wolfjaw / Upper Wolfjaw as one hike and Sawteeth / Gothics / Armstrong as another.

As I research Sawteeth it seems like the Scenic Trail is mandatory. Even Marble Point would be a shame to miss since odds are we won't ever be that close again. I'm not a fan of the Lake Road so I'd like to come in on the West River Trail and head back on the East River Trail (popping over to the road if we're not back by sunset).

All of the above leads me to believe that adding Gothics and Armstrong might be pushing it.

Additionally, Gothics research has convinced me that the Cable Route is something we really should experience. Before Gothics it seems that a side trip to Pyramid is a "do not miss". After that a return to The Garden over Gothics/Armstrong /UWJ seems logical. I've read that Armstrong to UWJ is a challenge so the whole day sounds like a tough hike.

So I'm wondering about bail outs. We can leave out Pyramid if we're not up to it. And I'm thinking a return from Gothics via the Cable Route must be easier than going over Armstrong and UWJ?

If we do plan on Gothics/Armstrong/UWJ then there's no reason to tag UWJ when we do our upcoming hike up LWJ via Bennies Brook.

So here's what I'm thinking:
  • LWJ via Bennies Brook
  • Sawteeth via Scenic Trail (access via West and East River Trails) with side trip to Marble Point
  • Gothics/Armstrong/UWJ via Cable Route with side trip to Pyramid

Have I thought this through correctly? Any advice?

Thanks for reading,

Last edited by AvalanchePass; 06-28-2017 at 08:56 AM..
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Old 06-28-2017, 07:15 PM   #2
Hear the Footsteps
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Saratoga County, NY
Posts: 146
Going down the cable route is a steadier descent than Armstrong to UWJ and it's less eroded. But it is steep and it leaves you with a long walk back to the Garden. It is better to climb the cable route because the descent from the Saddleback col is more slab and often slippery until you get to the ladder(steps).

The descent off Armstrong is not for everybody. And depending on your tolerance the ladder is the easy part.

I prefer WRT to ERT but that's just me. ERT isn't very scenic.

My normal route is SAW to LWJ but then I tolerate the Lake Road. One of my favorite routes is up Lake Road to the crossover to Beaver Meadow. Check out Beaver Meadow falls, then go up WTR where you pass a lesser know falls at the entrance to the canyon. Then side trip to check out Rainbow Falls. Continue to climb Saw to LWJ. Doing this you can bail out after Gothics going back to Beaver Meadow and follow the WRT back to Canyon Bridge. In that scenario you'd save LWJ, UWJ and Armstrong for later.

Those are a couple thoughts.


Last edited by Hear the Footsteps; 06-28-2017 at 07:25 PM..
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Old 07-05-2017, 10:53 AM   #3
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 249
Thanks for the response Don.

We want to do the Cable Route so I think coming back over Armstrong and Upper Wolfjaw makes sense rather than descending via the Cable Route. And missing Pyramid would be a shame so we'll head over there before Gothics. Sounds like the section between Armstrong and UWJ is something we should experience at some point as well. 14.8 miles, 3836 elevation gain

That leaves Sawteeth on it's own. West River Trail, Scenic Trail, Marble Point, East River Trail. 14.6 miles, 3186 elevation gain. I was surprised by that distance. We do want to do the Scenic Trail but maybe we'll use Lake Road or skip Marble Point.

Both of those are a little longer than anthing we want to tackle at the moment.

So for the next while we'll keep it a little shorter.

Street, Nye. 8.8 miles, 2628 elevation gain.

Lower Wolfjaw via Bennies Brook. 9.6 miles, 2943 elevation gain.

Rocky Point Ridge, Giant. 8.4 miles, 4406 elevation gain.

Tabletop, Phelps. 12.4 miles, 3770 elevation gain.

Wright, Algonquin, Iroquois, Avalanche Pass. 13.5 miles, 4477 elevation gain. Bail on Avalanche Pass if we're not up to it.

Thanks again,

P.S. Should mention that Cascade, Porter, and Big Slide are completed so we're trying to determine a plan going forward.

Last edited by AvalanchePass; 07-06-2017 at 06:49 AM..
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