SEVEN MOUNTAIN OUTINGS WITH 10 14ER SUMMITS IN SEVEN DAYS. Part 2.
After having climbed Mt. Harvard, Mt. Princeton and Mt. Columbia on the previous three days, the rest of my trip went as follows:
-July 11: Rest day used for sightseeing in Cripple Creek and Victor, Co.
-July 12: Drove up to the Missouri Gulch trailhead and started the hike to Missouri Mountain at 4:45 am. I didn't see any activity around me as I pressed on up the switchbacks and then up the valley. There were several tricky creek crossings due to high water then some mud and later a few snow patches below the ridge.
Missouri Mountain upper slopes.The morning was a little cloudy but calm, so the hike on the ridge was pleasant; I summited around 8 am and had great views all around.
Mt. Huron from the summit of Missouri. A couple of hikers joined me a few minutes later. The return trip was much faster since I ran more than half of the way; I got back to my car by 10:30 am. as the clouds were building.
-July 13: Got up early and drove all the way to Alma and up the Kite Lake road to do the Decalibron first and possibly Quandary later on. I started out 100' below the trailhead around 6 am. and joined two guys from Boulder for the entire hike. We encountered more high water and some snow up Democrat's slopes as we hiked at a brisk pace and hit the summit at 7:30 am, we were the first ones up there and enjoyed the great views of the Mosquito and Sawatch ranges.
On the summit of Democrat. We continued to Cameron as the winds picked up and other hikers were starting to show up on the steep slopes.
On the summit of Cameron. From Cameron the hike to Lincoln was pretty short but a cloud engulfed us on that summit blocking the views.
Summit of Lincoln. We continued on to Bross on a slightly longer traverse on Cameron's eastern slopes and afterwards on the broad flat connecting ridge. We took the steep trail up to the summit and snapped a few pic's; Lincoln was cloud free but the winds were not subsiding.
Lincoln from Bross. I wanted to get back down quickly for part two of my plan but there were a lot of clouds coming and going. As I got back to Alma after a quick descent of Bross (10 am.) I looked up to the skies, reacessed the situation and decided not to pursue Quandary in fear of a washout like it happened to me last year here, so I left. Back at Twin Lakes I realized that the weather actually improved over those peaks and regretted not going for the double.
-July 14: I drove up to the Baldwin Gulch trailhed and started promply at 5:45 am up the Mt. Antero road all by myself, there was no snow on this route but crossing the swollen creek got my feet wet. I kept moving up the long and lonely road to the south ridge and up the summit slope.
Mt. Princeton from Antero.I got there by 10 am. joining a big group from Chicago.
Shavano and Tabeguache from the summit of Antero. I took a bunch of pictures and headed down quickly before the big group and later ran all the way down to my car encountering many annoying jeeps. It was 12pm. and the weather was holding. I had the urge of doing something else so I drove all the way to Leadville and up the Iowa Gulch below Mt. Sherman, it was 2pm. I hiked as fast as I could keeping an eye in the sky and made good progress up the rocky trail at first and the scree covered slope to the saddle later. I could see most of the way from there and saw the last people coming down from Sherman as I hiked on the ridge.
Approaching Sherman's summit. The clouds were thin and I was feeling great, the summit was all mine after a 1hr and 40 min hike.
Looking west from the summit of Sherman. I spent a good 15 minutes soaking in the views and taking pictures. By 5 pm. I was back at my car feeling satisfied about finally pulling off a double in one day.
-July 15: We left Twin Lakes Via Aspen and Glenwwod Springs before heading back home.
Until next time...