Ascent Party: Exiled Michigander and Stiffler_from_Denver
Elevation gain 6500 feet
ScheduleSaturday 4:30 pm left Denver
6:30 Arrived in Leadville for Quincy’s Prime Rib
8:15 started up Missouri Gulch Trail
9:45 arrived at old cabin around 11,300 feet and set up camp
4:30 AM woke up
6:15 set out for Missouri Peak
10:30 Summited Missouri
1:45 started up ridge to Belford
4:30 Summited Belford
Still feeling the bitter sting of an unsuccessful trip on Little Bear in April after having climbed that nefarious Lake Como road in the middle of the night, Exiled Michigander and I set out to the Sawatch range on Saturday to get a couloir climb before conditions melted.
Camp early Sunday morning with Belford in the distance
We crossed the valley as the sun began to hit the top of Missouri Mt. Crossing the snow early in the morning before the sun hit it was a breeze; no fear of postholing.
We stashed our snowshoes and donned crampons for the remaining ascent.
Picture taken from Belford. Our route from where we stashed snowshoes till summit
going up C Coulior
Exiled Michigander on the Coulior
Exiled Michigander and Stiffler_from_Denver relaxing on summit
We glissaded part of the less steep part of the coulior on the way down then had to decide what to do next: take Elkhead Pass to Belford or head back down the valley and take the standard ridge up Belford. We decided on the latter because we needed to replenish our drinking water. Exiled Michigander had a SteriPEN which we used to purify the water flowing down the valley.
Postholing in the afternoon
starting up Belford
near summit of Belford with Missouri in background
Exiled Michigander on Summit of Belford
We got back to camp around 7:30 after refilling our water bottles for cooking. Exiled Michigander made some delicious Chili with kasha for dinner. We slep well that night having successfully summited two 14ers.
We slept in on Monday morning and made coffee and eggs and sausage for breakfast. We hiked back down to our car while passing a friendly couple from Kansas who was making their homage trip to the site of where they spent their honeymoon more than 30 years earlier.
Pretty cool! We then drove down the road 5 more miles to check out the Huron trailhead for next time. Great trip. It was a great feeling climbing up a coulior directly to the summit of Missouri!