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 Peak(s):  "Citadel, The"  -  13,294 feet
Hagar Mtn  -  13,220 feet
 Post Date:  10/08/2011 Modified: 11/21/2012
 Date Climbed:   09/25/2011
 Posted By:  Jay521

 Easy way up, Not so easy way down    


OK - I really did climb it this time. And Hagar, too. But I don't think I could have done it without Otina's Trip report. And because her report is so good
for the Citadel and the traverse to Hagar, I won't spend much time on that part and will concentrate mainly on our route down Dry Gulch.

For reference, Otina's EXCELLENT TR is here

Peaks: The Citadel and traverse to Hagar Mountain
Approach: Herman Gulch
Descent: Dry Gulch
Length: About 11 miles RT
Vertical: About 3600 feet
Ascent party: Santiago and me.

Hagar Mountain (Photo credit:Santiago)


The only things I would add to Otina's TR would be to underscore her comment about staying on a contour at about the Herman Lake level when
working around to the Bethel/Citadel Saddle. The willows down low are a real bear.

Once on the ridge, the climb to the Citadel really isn't all that difficult, save the loose gully near the summit.

Santiago checking out our route.


Looking back down Herman Gulch from just below the Citadel summit. Fall colors are showing


The traverse to Hagar was the most fun part. As Otina stated, there are plenty of options for scrambling and I think Santiago and I took
every difficult path we could.

The ridge to Hagar.


Continuing on down the south side of Hagar, it is a fairly easy class 3 downclimb as you can see in the following 3 pictures.


Do you see Santiago?




After the little bit of class 3, it gets pretty mellow (Photo credit:Santiago)


As you head down Dry Gulch, you get an interesting view of the Citadel.


We chose to stay on the "high north" side of Dry Gulch for about half way down and then dropped down a fairly steep slope and
picked up an intermittent trail.

This is a view from the lower end of the trail. Note the twin summits of the Citadel behind the ridge on the right hand side.

In the above photo, we stayed just above the trees until what looks like a ski run just left of center. We came down that slope and hooked
up with the trail. A word of warning - stay high as "Dry" gulch is anything but dry...

Our approximate route.
Image

We only had one vehicle so we ended up walking along I-70 for about a mile back to the Herman Gulch parking lot.

Dry Gulch is an interesting way to descend. A little more difficult than Herman Gulch but it meant that we saw only one person beyond the lake
(a guy doing the Citadel/Hagar traverse in the opposite direction). Walking along I-70 is a pain but making this a loop made up for that.

Thanks for taking the time to read this! Be careful out there.



Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
 


  • Comments or Questions (8)
forbins_mtn



good report!     2011-10-08 19:35:29
i really wanna hit these mountains next year. is there a road that takes you up to Herman Lake? Or are you parking your car off 70 and hiking the whole way?


Jay521


Thanks!     2011-10-10 11:39:12
Forbins - Herman Lake is only accessible by trail. You park off I-70 (I think the exit # is 218 ) and it is a good trail all the way to the lake as it is a very popular trail in the summer. Beyond the lake, it is mostly class 2 with some climber's trails until you get to the Citadel where it goes class 3.


nedryarson



Your word of warning...     2011-10-10 09:41:33
is spot on! I tried to follow the stream down Dry Gulch and it was a willow-bashing nightmare until I finally found a trail higher up. I recommend stashing a bike in the morning at the Dry Gulch 'trailhead' so you can bomb down the paved bike trail from Loveland back to the Herman Gulch exit - fun way to finish the loop!


nedryarson



Your word of warning...     2011-10-10 09:48:28
is spot on! I tried to follow the stream down Dry Gulch and it was a willow-bashing nightmare until I finally found a trail higher up. I recommend stashing a bike in the morning at the Dry Gulch 'trailhead' so you can bomb down the paved bike trail from Loveland back to the Herman Gulch exit - fun way to finish the loop!


Chicago Transplant


Dry Gulch     2011-10-10 13:30:59
Interesting to see the ”dry” perspective on Dry Gulch, when I went up Hagar it was all snow in the basin. I followed the creek the whole way out never realizing I was actually floating above a mess of willows! Cool peaks, they look a lot different w/o snow!


Jay521


Not so dry gulch     2011-10-10 16:31:07
Mike - Close to the stream it is mega-willow bashing. Above the willows, it's a marsh. If one stays just on the hillside, you can stay dry. The trail starts about half way down the gulch but it must have been cut in dry years as in several places, it went straight through the bog. But still a fun route down - MUCH less traveled than Herman Gulch.


forbins_mtn



thanks     2011-10-10 18:29:29
thanks for all the beta....this is definitely on the top of my list to for next year.


dillonsarnelli



TR creeping     2013-10-28 17:26:06
Jay, I think you're long overdue for another TR! Thanks again for that summit pic on Handies. I realized after the fact I should have given you picture credit in the TR for the finale shot. My bad. Lets meet again on a summit in 2014!



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