Peak(s):  Snowmass Mountain  -  14,092 feet
Post Date: 
Date Climbed:   09/06/2005
Posted By:  Arctic Blonde

 Snowmass from Lead King Basin  

This is a beautiful hike and on Labor Day Weekend there were just 2 (!!) of us on the trail: me and another guy who was ahead of me quite a ways.

From the trailhead to Little Gem Lake is one of the prettiest hikes Ive done in CO and a very good warm-up for the unrelenting vertical hike to the summit. Colors are just starting to turn and there were still lots of wild flowers.

The rock is quite unstable on that final LONG ascent but I stayed on a ridge to the (u:7d8bedbfab)right (/u:7d8bedbfab)of the route on this website and had reasonably secure footing and popped up right under the summit. I followed the route down the gully and it got a bit slick after a passing hail shower.

As I was in no rush to get back to the campground, I ambled past the lakes around 5 or 6 pm and was rewarded with scampering deer and lots of marmots having cocktails on the veranda. Unfortunately it is now hunting season there and the campground was lousy with hunters practice-shooting at each other... which is unnerving and destroys the peace of that gorgeous valley.


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