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 Peak:  Mt. Columbia (14er)
 Route:  West Slopes
 Range:  Sawatch
 Posted By:  ezabielski
 Date of Information:  06/22/2013
 Date Posted:  06/23/2013
 Report

I don't think we encountered any snow on the route. Some places were muddy. The route up/down the West Slope is a long, steep, scree hike with poor traction in many places. If you want to follow the 14ers.com traverse route from Harvard, download the route pictures to your phone beforehand with the app, or print the pictures, and follow them carefully. Otherwise, just follow your nose, but you'll probably drop down pretty low (~12,500). The traverse is short mileage wise, but is mostly off trail and requires crossing boulderfields and a very steep uphill hike on the Columbia side. Do not try the traverse if there is any forcasted weather, or if clouds are forming on Harvard's summit. We took about 3 hours summit to summit. Some groups take five hours.


  • Comments or Questions (2)
screeman57


deja vu...     2013-06-23 22:12:10
Your report brings back unpleasant memories--I dropped down too low, had to duck several storms, and took 5 hours!

Very good advice you offer!


ezabielski


RE: deja vu...     2013-06-24 09:27:00
Even though it was slow going, I enjoyed the high alpine off trail hiking. The only downer for the day really was the descent from Columbia.



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