Belleview Mountain 13233
We found a good campsite next to the Schofield Pass Snotel station. It rained most of the night so we knew we would get soaked going through the alpine meadows. Some lingering clouds accompanied us on our journey up the West Maroon Pass trail. Less than half a mile up the trail the view opens up over never ending fields of flowers. It was breathtaking.
Roach suggests climbing Belleview from the west ridge, up grassy slopes to scree, I thought it looked unpleasant to ascend. So we opted for the more interesting route from West Maroon Pass. Clouds hung low on the Bells when we reached the pass. There is a strong climbers trail which weaves up the ridge. The difficulty never exceeds class 2+ on rather solid blocks for the Elks. We were glad for the moisture as it softened some of what would have been hardpan.
oh scree how I love thee
typical terrain above West Maroon Pass
All too soon the scampering ended and we were on the false summit. The summit tower looks impressive. The easiest route wraps around to the north ridge and climbs 2+ blocks to the summit. I followed the path of least resistance up the east face to just below the summit and made a couple of class 3 moves to reach this amazing perch. Ben followed a more direct line up the face.
eating a tomato and studying the bells
Summit area terrain
For a change of scenery we headed down the southwest ridge towards Frigid Air Pass. I can't say I would recommend ascending Belleview from this side, as a descent route it was quick. Unnamed 12489 beckoned us but impressive storm clouds chased us down. So we returned later to climb it. The route from Frigid Pass would go like this, follow the trail west to an unmarked juncture at 12200, follow this trail around a ridge bump and meet up with the Hasley Basin trail. The ridge up 12489 starts out as a rough class 2 hike and mellows out near the summit. A Ptarmigan decided to race me to the summit, I just barely won. The descent goes down the Hasley Basin trail towards trail 1970.
looking back at the ridge
I beat you to the top
Because the wildflowers were so amazing I'll just leave you with some of the images I captured.
a storms a brewing