Moolock Mountain and South Bessemer Mountain via logging roads

I parked my car at the Bessemer CCC Road-Trail Trailhead on the Middle Fork Road.

I rode my mountain bike up the Bessemer Road Connector Trail, went right on the CCC Road-Trail, and went left up the Bessemer Road-Trail (the map showed this as being gated, but I didn't see one). (The Bessemer Road Connector Trail and the Bessemer Road-Trail are both so more traveled than the CCC Road-Trail that it would be easy to not notice when you join or leave the CCC Road-Trail.) I rode my bike up the Bessemer Road-Trail until the 5th switchback (around 2,220') and locked my bike to a tree.

From there I went on foot to the intersection of the Bessemer Road-trail and the logging road to Moolock Mountain (around 3,120'). After a couple miles this logging road was barricaded and on the other side of the barricade was a footpath lined with boulders, this footpath was pretty neat and it continued almost to the end of the road. After crossing the ESE ridge of Moolock Mountain there were half a dozen chairs made out of stumps (did the loggers make these and the boulder-lined path?). I continued on to the end of the logging road, just S of Moolock Mountain, and then fought brush up the small ridge to the top of Moolock Mountain. (I should have traversed W to the boulder field and ascended the side of the boulder field. Better yet, I should have ascended the way I descended.)

The summit is a large pile of boulders with a film cannister summit register under a cairn, the only other party that signed the register was in June, maybe because there is no pencil. At this point I was soaked, chilly, the wind was driving the sleet diagonal, and fog obscured all but my immediate vicinity, so I didn't see much of anything at the summit and was only left with an impression that the views would be good on a nice day.

Because of the rotten visibility I almost descended down the ridge that leads to the North Fork Snoqualmie, fortunately I checked my compass before heading down and avoided what could have been a very bad mistake. The ridge down was very nice old growth, through the fog I thought I saw old growth and meadow on the N side of the ridge (is it really?). I dropped S off the ridge to the road-trail when the old growth ended right before a boulder field. This is a much better way to ascend or descend than the way I made my ascent. (When ascending the turn off of the trail and up the ridge is marked by a cairn on the N side of the road-trail).

I descended to Kiss Your Ass Goodbye Pass (just NW of the borrow pit, a road not shown on the map connects the borrow pit and the pass) and went up South Bessemer Mountain. The summit of South Bessemer Mountain looks like the end of a gravel road.

I descended via the Bessemer Road-Trail, I wish I had taken my bike up to the Moolock Mountain turnoff and cut half an hour off of this wet descent. On the CCC Road-Trail I saw my only people for the day: a half-dozen crazy mountain bikers coming from the Middle Fork Road. What were they thinking biking on a rotten day like this?

Copyright © 2004 Gabriel Deal.