The trek ends with a relatively easy nine-mile stroll through bear grass meadows and old forest burns to your car at Pass Creek Pass. In two miles, angle southwest along the ridgeline between Thunder and Helmer Mountains. On the north slope of Helmer, there are three tricky junctions. Stay on Pass Creek Trail, making a left, a right, and another right. Then cut up switchbacks to the southwest and climb up into an alpine basin where the path wends through weathered and blackened conifers charred by a 1994 forest fire. From here, gain just one hundred feet as you roll over Mankato Mountain, then head downhill to FR 22.