Peak(s):  Mt. Massive  -  14,421 feet
"North Massive"  -  14,340 feet
"Massive Green"  -  14,300 feet
"South Massive"  -  14,132 feet
Pt 14,169 - 14,169 feet
Post Date:  07/26/2011
Modified:  08/24/2011
Date Climbed:   07/24/2011
Posted By:  Waggs
Additional Members:   globreal, weschun

 A Massive Day - South West Slope   

What a fantastic day on a mountain! Weather was perfect and the company outstanding! Oh, and 5 14ers to boot!

We all spent the night at the busy North Half Moon creek trail head. Site weren’t hard to find, but they weren’t plentiful either. At 3:30a the following morning I think we were all stirring and preparing for the day. By 4:30a we were geared up and on the trail. The morning was cool enough for a light layer, but not cold and within an hour of starting the hike, layers were being shed.

Oh-dark thirty start

Even in the dark, the trail was easy to move along and we covered the mile and a half to the sign in 45 minutes. Roach’s book indicates that people miss this turn off to Mt. Massive but these days it is very well signed:

Turn here...

From the sign, we traveled up the trail. And up, and up, and up reaching 14,000 feet in about 2.5 hours. At this point we left the trail and began to contour(-ish) over to South Massive. This detour took us though a boulder field, and while the going was slow, it was not difficult.

Looking towards South Massive

Contouring (-ish) to South Massive

On the other side of this saddle is the trail from the east slope.

Saddle between Massive and South Massive

Just after 8a, we were on the summit of South Massive.
South Massive Group Shot

Moving from South Massive to Mount Massive was pretty straight forward. An hour after South Massive we were on Mt. Massive.
Massive Group Shot

And, an hour later, we were on Massive Green.
Massive Green Peak Host greeting me

Then things got interesting...
The "Rock Pile"

We ran into Adam (Keystone4Me) who did some scouting around the rock pile, and did not find an easy route for him and his pup. As we approached, Britt did a quick study of the formation, and disappeared to the climbers left. Wes and I waited for a few minutes and decided that Britt wasn't coming back, and that we should attempt to follow.

Britt points the route for us.

And so we did...
Wes on the move around the Rock Pile

And eventually ended up at the base of this:
The route UP to North Massive

We went up where the hiker is coming down. The stuff was loose and ugly but we single filed our way up.
North Massive group shot

From the summit of North massive we quickly made our way to Point 14,169. From the point we then headed to the bowl to the south west to assess glissade potential.
South East Bowl

And we did.
Yours truly...

The hike wasn't quite done with us yet though.
Wes moving through a snow field

And the scenery was spectacular!

The head/hat dips here were refreshing!
Head dips

Exactly 12 hrs after starting, Britt was back at the trail head cracking open a creek chilled beer. I was about 15 minutes behind him, and Wes about 15 minutes behind me.

I'll say it again, weather was fantastic (maybe even a bit warm)! But I enjoyed this hike far more than when I did Bel-Ox a couple weeks ago.

Big thanks to Britt for sharing trip pics.

The End

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

  • Comments or Questions

5-14ers in a day & a 6 pack waiting in the creek..     07/27/2011 02:07
it doesn't get much better than that!

Thanks Rob for putting up a TR to remember it by. It was a very memorable day with some of the best weather you'll ever find in Colorado. And since we were out 12 hours...what a blessing!

Hope to climb again with you soon.


Awesome day     07/27/2011 02:26
Thanks Rob for the TR. You captured the day well. It was great spending the day with you.


Man!     07/27/2011 20:24
Those dogs must've been barking! Nice TR!

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