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 Peak(s):  Pikes Peak  -  14,110 feet
 Post Date:  02/07/2007
 Date Climbed:   02/06/2007
 Posted By:  sudnstop

 Pikes from Crags   

03:30 What is that noise.. alarm clock, kill me.. Eat some breakfast and finish getting gear packed, where is the other glove. During the night one of our 6 cats (we live in Manitou and have 6 cats, enough said). Brad is waiting patiently for me to try and locate my errant glove, no luck.

Just past the Mennonite Camp the road is impassable so we park at a nice plowed parking area and get all our gear situated and don the headlamps. The moon is still up but it is a bit overcast so ther is not much light. The snow seemed to glitter like a million little diamonds in the light of the headlamps. After hiking for 50min we reach the trailhead and hike up the well packed trail.

Just below treeline the trail should split south but there is a ton of snow and the slope to the North looks much more manageable. The packed trail ends and we decide to don snowshoes.

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We popped up looking down on Glen Cove and skirted the ridge. The snow was wind packed w/ some incredible sastrugi. The wind pickup a bit and cooled a bit so we put on some more clothes to take them off later when the wind died and the sun came out. The photo below shows the snow and the road you follow from the true Crags trail saddle and across the road. We traversed over to the road and followed the trail alongside the road. The PB&J sandwich I ate at an earlier break decided to haunt me. I felt like vomiting for the next 1.5hrs, not altitude sickness. We could look down into the correct trail and see that it would have be a LOOOONG day if we had slogged through all the snow up that way.

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There is a well packed snowfield on the N/E aspect of Little Pikes that made me wish for crampons or atleast the piolet strapped to my pack. We had removed the snow shoes because the trail did not have much snow on it and the snow we encountered held our weight well. This pic is brad crossing this snow field.

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The rest of the trail was pretty straigtforwad and followed the cairns through the talus to the summit. There was a bit of snow in the talus but nothing exciting. We pretty much had the summit to ourselves because the summit house and train are not open during the week. We rested for a bit then stated the descent. The pic below shows the summit from Little Pikes snowfield.

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It seemed forever to get from the camground to the truck. After arriving back we pulled out a guy that seemed to think his rental minivan could make it further up the road than my 4x4 truck. It was a great hike with great weather. The 20-30 mph winds never showed and we still have our finger and toes.. It took us 11.5 hours and because I did not bring my gps I traced a route on topo and it came out to 14.4 miles..



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