Summit Elevation (m): 2702
Trip Date: Saturday, May 01, 2004
Round Trip Time (hr): Unknown
Elevation Gain (m): 1345
Total Trip Distance (km): 20
Quick ‘n Dirty Rating: Class 2/3 – you fall, you sprain or break something
Difficulty Notes: Moderate scrambling along the summit ridge with some minor exposure. Loose ascent gully.
Technical Rating: SC6; YDS (3rd)
Map: Google Maps
Fable has the reputation of being a long and boring hike with only partially worthwhile views once at the top. Well, I must have picked the right day because it was a fantastic outing for me! The sun was shining, the birds were chirping and there was enough snow in the gullies to glissade a good portion of the descent. The hike is long. Make sure you bring some good buddies along and start some big philosophical discussion and you should be fine.
I kind of liked making up almost 2000 feet of elevation before actually doing any real effort! I think what made this hike enjoyable for me is that the weather was fantastic for April and the lingering snow on the surrounding ridges and peaks made for a very nice panorama. I could see the long approach being intolerable in very hot or cold weather.
The creeks were running very low so we didn’t have any problems crossing back and forth (the bridges were all covered in frost so essentially unusable in the morning – who made these? – they’re very cool!). After branching west into the Fable creek drainage we were pleasantly surprised by the incredible views that started to open up behind and in front of us as we got higher. The snow around the headwall made for nice kick-stepping and soon we were heading up the steep scree towards the summit ridge. The scree is best avoided on the way up by staying on the far right of the slope.
The summit ridge was pleasant but a little tricky in places due to some lingering snow. About 4.5 hours after leaving the car we topped out and after some quick photos we immediately headed down due to the hurricane like winds up there! We had a blast glissading through the headwall and below and nearly hiked our feet off on the long trek back to the trailhead.
I recommend this scramble for a nice cool fall or spring day. Just make sure there isn’t too much snow around or a really long approach trail will need to be done twice in order to make the true summit. My only regret is that I didn’t get to do the traverse to Gap Peak and since I’ve already done that peak too I don’t think I’ll be doing it any time soon.