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Quick mountaineering trip in Colorado
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Christopher Mills
(Hiker816) - MLife

Locale: Denver
Need advice on quick mountaineering trip in Colorado on 08/08/2011 18:04:16 MDT Print View

I need a recommendation for a quick mountaineering trip in Colorado. I am trying to convince a friend who was planning on climbing Shasta next week to come to Colorado instead to do a short mountaineering trip, plus some backpacking. I just moved to Colorado and don't know the mountaineering routes at all. Can someone recommend a mountain and route that would be similar to Shasta right now -- i.e., require an ice axe and crampons and camping on the snow above tree line, but not require glacier travel/roping up? Thanks in advance.

Edited by Hiker816 on 08/08/2011 18:04:56 MDT.

Christopher Mills
(Hiker816) - MLife

Locale: Denver
Re: Need advice on quick mountaineering trip in Colorado on 08/09/2011 18:16:11 MDT Print View

Bump. Anyone?

Christopher Chupka
(FatTexan) - M

Locale: NTX
Colorado on 08/11/2011 15:18:54 MDT Print View

Really not anything like that right now, in the Winter or Spring close but not now.

You can check with:

http://www.14ers.com/
http://fourteenerworld.com/
http://www.summitpost.org/

Most, if not all the mountains in CO are day trips. You could backpack into the middle of a few and day trip from there.

There's Chicago Basin, near Durango,can be crowded. There is Eolus, North Eolus, Sunlight, and Windom 14ers to climb.

South of Westcliffe are the Colony Lakes. Crestone Peak, Needle, and Humboldt are there.

Eolus and Sunlight have a little Class 3 climbing, but the Crestones have a lot of solid Class 3 fun.

Christopher Mills
(Hiker816) - MLife

Locale: Denver
Re: Colorado on 08/11/2011 23:04:55 MDT Print View

Thanks -- that's the info I needed. It won't help in convincing my friend to head here, but it's good info nonetheless.

Brian Lindahl
(lindahlb) - MLife

Locale: Colorado Rockies
13ers on 04/24/2012 12:22:53 MDT Print View

Way late to the party here, but for future reference, deeply inset couloirs can require crampons and ice axe as late as August. No camping on snow, but last year in August, we camped above treeline and climbed the north side of Mt. Powell in the Gore Range. I did a low class-5 rock route, and my buddy did a steep ice/snow route (steepest section was 55/60 degrees).

If you stray away from the 14ers, there are a few areas that have mountains where backpacking access is the norm. Some of the peaks deep in the Gore range and more remote parts of the San Juans come to mind. This is especially true when you consider the oft-necessity of getting off of alpine terrain in the afternoons, due to storms.

We climbed Eagles Nest and then dropped into the Black Lakes Basin for the night. There were a ton of peaks that still had steep snow/ice routes back in that area in August, but our snowpack was rather high that year.

Edited by lindahlb on 04/24/2012 12:24:36 MDT.

Brian Austin
(footeab) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: 13ers on 04/25/2012 13:28:03 MDT Print View

My rather limited experience/information on Colorado, is San Juan's or bust essentially. Don't even contemplate the "front range". Been to both ranges, wasn't too impressed, but San Juan's are actually called mountaineering objectives. It is different though and more of a backpackers, rock climbers heaven in Colorado. Do Petit Grepon in the Front Range. Sweet 6 pitch rock climb.

Otherwise go North into Wyoming where IMO its far superior in all 3 of Wyoming's ranges. Its not that far from Denver. Especially when the speed limit is 75 and cops will only pull you over if you are doing +90mph except in Denver Metro that is... Denver to Tetons or Wind Rivers is 8 hours. Friends can fly into Jackson Hole or Cheyenne. What is funny is that they will probably fly THROUGH Denver to get to these destinations so its probably not worth it.

Colorado is a great place to go backpacking. Mountaineering? Not really.

Rock climbing, no better place besides Sierras.

Raft Floating down a creek? Sure great as well.

Mountaineering? Depending on the season, yes. Early Spring/late winter, was just there actually, and needed ice axe and crampons and used them. Summer time? No.

PS. Go in the early spring as there won't be afternoon thunderstorms as often. Against this is the need to be aware of avalanche potential and less daylight hours and colder temperatures that most people will not be fond of.

Brian Austin
(footeab) - F

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Re: 13ers on 04/25/2012 13:29:00 MDT Print View

Oi, just noticed the date... Not exactly relevant to you anymore, but maybe to others.