Ah yes...now on to the main course...Wetterhorn. Because I would only be hiking Wetterhorn on Friday, I decided to sleep in an extra fifteen minutes and set the alarm for 4:30. Once again I awoke to beautiful clear skies. I grabbed a bagel and my hiking food from our hanging feed bag, threw my tripod mounted camera over my shoulder (my new preferred way to carry my camera while hiking) and was off. The sun began lighting the morning sky as I approached the base of Wetterhorn, and many photographic distractions appeared. Most of the Columbine I saw during my two night stay in the Uncompahgre Wilderness were in this area.
Columbine along the trail
I caught the sun as it peeked over Uncompahgre, and just to be sure I got a good shot, I ran back down the trail to shoot the sun peeking over a second time....what a great way to get the blood pumping in the morning!
Sunrise over Uncompahgre
I gradually made my way up the south west ridge toward the final summit pitch. I had researched this route many times, so the final class three scramble was exactly as I had expected it to be, and it felt like I had done it before. I ended up choosing the direct route to the summit, but didn't like the idea of down climbing this section with all of my gear, so I chose to come down the (slightly) easier way (the ledge that leads to the easier way up can be seen heading to the left in the sun near the top of the photo).
Climbers on the Wetterhorn Summit Pitch (taken on descent)
Looking down on Heisshorn from the summit
We all know that the only reason I hike fourteeners is to get free sandwiches (if you know of an easier way, please let me know).
Coxcomb and Redcliff from Wetterhorn
Hikers on the way down
Fixer-upper along the road back to Lake City
We wanted to grab a quick bite to eat in Lake City before heading up to Crested Butte, and we saw the Lake City Bakery as we were about to leave town. We were only expecting scones and doughnuts, but they also had heartier fare like calzones. Great little place. Please give them your business, because I want it to be there the next time I'm in the area.
Lake City Bakery