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 Peak(s):  Mt. Evans  -  14,264 feet
 Post Date:  07/16/2005
 Date Climbed:   07/14/2005
 Posted By:  seannunn

 Mount Evans via Spalding   

On Thursday, July 14, Geoff Hughes and I set off at 5 am to attempt Mount Evans and Mount Bierstadt from Guanella Pass trailhead. In order to abide by the 3000 foot rule, we aimed for Mount Spalding (13842) first, thereby climbing 3000 feet prior to reaching the top of Evans (Guanela Pass trailhead is at 11669). We took the Bierstadt trail for ~1 mile, then headed left at an impromptu campsite to head through what we thought was grass and some small shrubs on the lower slope of Spalding. The grass turned out to be marsh, and the small shrubs turned out to be the infamous willows.
After suffering through the marshlands and willows, we summitted Spalding, then continued over to Evans, skirting the false summits. Coming back over towards the Sawtooth, we topped out on the unofficial 14er West Evans, which features some fun, easy scrambling. Upon reaching the top of the Sawtooth, we were unable to find a route across to Bierstadt that looked reasonably safe. With stormclouds building, we decided to retreat down the scree gully of the Sawtooth. We once again engaged the dreaded willows and marshland in order to return to the trailhead.
Personally, I am a big "Roach" fan, but I cannot recommend route 5 as a way to climb Mount Evans. If I could do it over again, I would take the Bierstadt trail to the top of Bierstadt first, then try the Sawtooth over to Evans. As I found out the next day, the routefinding on the Sawtooth appears much easier from the Bierstadt side.

Sean Nunn

 


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