| Culebra/Red Mtn Group Climb - Standard Route
Culebra Group Hike:
MaverickMannly, SummitRidge, Native MtnGuy, StevieTwoShoes, Oman, JHaas, MtGirl, Jeanie, Mel McKinny, FlyGirl, USAKeller, GdThomas, WasklyWabbit, TriAnything, Gitsujmpottery, KirkT
I am the official designee to write the trip report for the Culebra 6/23 group hike. It's my first one, so please bear with me.
RenoBob had begun organizing the trip for the Culebra climb a couple months earlier. The mountain is located on the private land of Taylor ranch right outside of San Luis, Colorado. The Cielo Vista ranch was unsure if it would be open the weekend of the hike due to wetness of the land. Finally in the beginning of June, we got the word, it was a go. Unfortunately RenoBob got a new job and couldn't join the trip
A majority of people drove to San Luis on Friday night and checked in at the San Luis Inn.
If you ask for the Culebra climb discount, the rooms were roughly $60 dollars a night. The group that stayed at the Inn met in the parking lot at 7pm and walked to the Covered Wagon restaurant for some dinner and Margarita's. The conversation was lively. Everyone getting to know each other and determine which Avatar they were. Mtgirl had fun poking at Jhaas's Texas accent. 'Did you visit the shrriiiine tuday?'
We finished our meal and a few decided to hang out at the bar next door and enjoy a few more beers. Everyone called it an evening around 10:30 and went to get some shut eye.
In the morning everyone met in the lobby at 5:30 to carpool to the ranch. Group shot was taken in front of the hotel.
Back Row: USAKeller, KirkT, Native Mtnguy, Oman, Jhaas, GdThomas, Wasklywabbit, SteveTwoShoes, Gitsujmpottery. Front Row: Mtgirl, Mel Mckinny, TriAnything, FlyGirl, and Jeanie
We drove up to the Taylor Ranch gate and was met by Alfonso, a ranch hand. He informed us the waivers and money were going to be taken at the gate and not the office this time.
We then drove up the dirt road which becomes a four wheel road. The road has beautiful views on both sides, and a large section has walls of Aspens that make an arch over the road. We continued up the road until we reached Four Way. Four way is the lower parking area and has an elevation of roughly 11,000'. You can tell you're at Four Way when you see the sign. The group parked and got ready for the climb.
We began by walking up the dirt road until we got to the upper trail head.
Here is a picture of WasklyWabbit, USAKeller, and Jhass walking up the road. USAKeller had brought the infamous TalusMonkey Pimp Hat for the summit. At the upper trailhead, we took another look at the directions from the 14ers.com site and determined the ascent route. We had chosen the path up the face on the left side of the snow field.
The mountain is quite pristine, and there is no trail to follow. MaverikManly, SummitRidge, and friend arrived earlier than us and ascended going up the right (south) of snowfield. The south side is where we all descended.
Once you ascend to the long slope, you get to the long ridge that is on the northwest side of the summit. The ridge is relatively flat and leads you to a very large rock cairn. I believe it's the largest in Colorado.
The rock cairn was inhabited by a metropolis of Marmots. While taking pictures, we saw at least 6 hanging around. We continued southbound past the cairn and curved around to a decent. The decent is a field of boulders. Once we got to the bottom ridge the ground was flat and mossy, we then came across a small snowfield. The snow was not too deep, so we didn't posthole too much.
We then curved east and begun ascending up the ridge to the false summit. The ridge is covered with boulders, so boulder hopping or small scrambling is required. The ridge leads to a false summit.
We curved to the right of the false summit, others decided they needed more elevation gain for the day and went over the top.
The summit is roughly ˝ mile from the false summit. We continue up the ridge through more rocks and reached the summit. Bernie – SummitRidge was the first to summit at 8:50am. The rest of the group slowly trickled in.
We grabbed some food and enjoyed the views. Mtgirl had brought some Mt. Dew and Spongebob shot cups to the top and KirkT made said a great toast to TalusMonkey.
USAKeller and KirkT took some great pictures with TalusMonkey's infamous Pimp hat.
Flygirl had brought cowboy hats for all the girls to wear on the summit.
Six people chose to continue onto Red Mountain. Red mountain summit is southeast of Culebra We descended on the southern side of Culebra through more boulders. The ascent up the summit is fairly steep, but a small switchback trail is evident.
We group summated Red Mountain roughly 70 minutes later. Here is the group picture of Red Mountain summit. The weather was beautiful, with few clouds in the horizon.
StevieTwoShoes took a shot of an infamous hurricane pose.
We soon descended down the boulders we came up. We skirted the summit of Culebra on the left trying not to gain too much elevation. The jury is still out if this was easier than summating. USAKeller and StevieTwoShoes took some time on the ridge to reenact a scene from Titanic. It turns out StevieTwoShoes has a fondness for Celine Dion music.
We continued down the long slop on the south side of the drainage gulch.
Everyone met back up at the lower trailhead and enjoyed a few cool drinks before we departed.
One last picture with all six girls, 'The special edition of the Culebra climb!'
It was absolutely beautiful weather with great company, what more could you ask for!
Good times.. Good times!!!
Once again thank you RenoBob for putting this trip together!