Left the house at 4am. Upon arriving we discovered that the access road was not plowed for the last 1/2+ mile to the trail head parking lot due to a fallen tree. We missed the turn off to the trail and walked about an extra 1/2 mile past the parking lot on the forest road. The trail was well cut to the first bridge but then faded out. We found the trail again under the freeway but again it faded quickly once in the forest. We worked our way to the second bridge, crossed the chutes to the waterfall, and then decided to go off-trail straight up the ridge. Taking turns kicking steps, we quickly made it to a small cirque/pond and started up the face. The fresh snow was about 24" deep on a fairly slick crust and we were making painfully slow progress. By then, it was was snowing hard and blowing harder; our tracks were 1/2 filled just 100 meters behind us. At about 12:45p we turned back just 50 feet from the ridge cornices.