Buying Gear?  Click Here
Buying gear? Please use these links to help 14ers.com:

More info...

Other ways to help...
 Peak(s):  Mt. Yale  -  14,196 feet
 Post Date:  06/20/2011
 Date Climbed:   06/18/2011
 Posted By:  Irish14er

 Summer 14er season has begun   

Well ....

Technically, it's not Summer until Tuesday (6/21). And Mother Nature may have something to say about it yet. She did a little on Saturday and definitely on Monday (6/20).

Started our at Denny Creek TH at 6am solo, with two other pairs starting just before me. A nice cool (~36F) Summer morning. Trail was very clear for the first mile plus. It should be a shorts and tee-shirt day!!

Image
Lower Denny Creek trail


First challenge of the day is the crossing of Denny Creek (not the Delaney Creek cross further up). The water is running a little high at the regular crossing and you have to use a number of logs across the creek. Just 10 ft up from the regular trail. Picture taken on the descent.

Image
Denny Creek crossing


All the way to 11,500 the trail is most Summer like, with minor water, ice, snow and mud. The log bridge over Delayer Creek is OK and not awash.

After you get up the ridge and start to head SE into the trees from 11,500 to 11,700 there is a lot more snow. It's mostly compacted and lots of steps or kick-steps. There are some "pre-built" post holes. You don't need snow-shoes and I did not use the micro-spikes I brought. You could use them here or on the snow-field at 12,800-13,200. You mostly can get by with hiking boots and gaiters. Of course there were the few with shorts, tee-shirts and trail runners - more later. The trail can be found by looking for the established trail between the snow patches and the foot prints in the snow. The new trail section is in this area and the old section in not completely closed off yet. So there is some confusion here. Two of the people ahead of me got lost here. The CFI crew are working it (more later) and will have it resolved when the snow clears.

Image
A little snow challenge at 11,500 in the trees


Image
Pre-Post-holed for your convenience


On the snow-field on the SW slope (12,800 - 13,200), just below the steep climb, it's best to stay to the left (west) for as long as possible, but you have to cross it as some stage. It you are up there early it's solid and easy to walk on. When it's a little soft later in the morning/afternoon, you may post-hole near rocks or at the edges.

Image
Snow Field from above


Up on the steep slope before the final ridge to the peak it got very windy and cold. By the time I got to the peak, four others had arrived. It was below 30, wind 15-20mph plus gusts. Making for a wind chill in the high teens!! But we had a Summer hiker - only shorts, hoody and trail hikers. No gloves/hat. His hands were a white to blue color. Did give him a pair of gloves for a while. As the four others bailed from the top, we had a little snow and graupel. The Summer hiking season is now official.

No snow on the south side of the ridge to the peak from either side of the peak and no snow on the peak. Lots of snow still out there on the 14er family in the area.

Image
Peaks to the South (Princeton on the Left edge)


On the descent, a shot to the south. No the lens is not foggy. That is a light snow and graupel.

Image
Snow, graupel shower


Back down the trail at about 11,500 there is lots of serious work on the trail, with serious tools.

Image
Serious trail tools


This is the Colorado Fourteeners Initiative (CFI) crew working the trail, for your convenience. Most are volunteers. There were starting work at about 7am. If you can volunteer you should. If you can't swing a pick, perhaps you can donate ( http://www.14ers.com/cfi.php ). But, at least say Thank You, when you pass them on the trail. They make the 14er experience great for all of us.

Image
CFI crew


And back at the Trail Head, it is in the high 60s. The Forest Service at the TH preparing to bring up material for erosion control. All for your safely and convenience.

Image
Forest Service getting read for erosion control


Welcome to hiking in Colorado, with Sunshine, Snow, a 40 degree temperature swing, sweating, fear of frost-bite and a couple of changes in clothing layers throughout the day. Be prepared for all conditions!!!

The Summer 14er Hiking season has begun. Enjoy your hiking and see you on a peak.



Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
 


  • Comments or Questions
arianna2

Thanks for the reminder     2011-06-22 08:23:00
It is sometimes easy to forget the great work that people do to keep the trails so nice for us all. A big thanks to them all.



   Using your forum id/password. Not registered? Click Here


Caution: The information contained in this report may not be accurate and should not be the only resource used in preparation for your climb. Failure to have the necessary experience, physical conditioning, supplies or equipment can result in injury or death. 14ers.com and the author(s) of this report provide no warranties, either express or implied, that the information provided is accurate or reliable. By using the information provided, you agree to indemnify and hold harmless 14ers.com and the report author(s) with respect to any claims and demands against them, including any attorney fees and expenses. Please read the 14ers.com Safety and Disclaimer pages for more information.

© 2014 14ers.com®, 14ers Inc.