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 Peak(s):  Torreys Peak  -  14,267 feet
 Post Date:  07/05/2008
 Date Climbed:   07/04/2008
 Posted By:  BHallDDS

 Torrey‘s Peak via Kelso Ridge   

I did Gray's last week as my first 14er and went back up on July 4th, '08 with a crew that hadn't done one yet. So, I had been scoping out going up to Torrey's Peak via Kelso Ridge all week and decided to give it a go. Started about 7 A.M. and was on the summit of Torrey's at 10. It's a great Class 3 mostly hike with some Class 4 if you veer off the ridge like I accidentally did. It's a great hike if you are looking for something close to I-70/Denver and want a good workout. The view from the ridge to the North are outstanding as well. Here are my photos and report...

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Here's a picture of the guys with Kelso Ridge in the background...you can slightly make out the mine shack that is the landmark to where the ridge begins.

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This is the start of the trail up Kelso Ridge. It begins as Class 1 but quickly turns to Class 2/3.

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This is a couple hundred feet up...a rock cairn where the trails starts to disappear and it becomes Class 3ish. I recommended staying either on the ridge or to the right of it. We went to the left of the ridge mistakenly and ended having to go up and down some Class 4 faces instead of simplifying it but staying on the ridge. It was a good workout however.

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Looking back towards the ridge and the start of the trail.

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Me with the view towards the north from the ridge. There are good views from the ridge you don't get hiking up Gray's/Torrey's.

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Met this guy Saul who is shown here hiking up the beginning 1/3 of the ridge. It was his first 14er and I give him credit b/c he did well. Not many people would do a Class 3 hike for their first.

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A look back down the ridge about 1/3 up to the summit.

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This is one of the spots we got sidetracked to the left of the ridge as I was talking about above and this is some of the stuff you have to trek up (steep, loose stuff)...not fun.

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A broader view of the area we came to the left of the ridge, as you can see some steep loose rock. This is where I recommend staying on the ridge or to the right of it.

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We got back on top of the ridge as this is looking back down...as you can see the left side (right side going up) looks much tamer.

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A nice view from the ridge looking down towards the bottom.

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A look to the summit about 1/2 way up...again, you can see the trail on the right side of the ridge. The left side is much steeper.

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A little more ways up, a good look at the type of terrain you'll encounter.

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A look down the ridge about 2/3 to the summit.

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This is the "knife edge" section of the Kelso...which is VERY exposed and if you have any problems with exposure/wind/etc...I would just be extra careful. We lucked out and had a PERFECT day. The white rock portion you see isn't that tricky...it's the part right before it. Saul and I had to scoot on our butts for about 30 or so feet. Once you get to the white rock, you just climb over it on all fours. Not too hard but definitely very exposed.

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This looking back towards the "white rock" just after climbing it. Kind of a cool structure and weird how it's the only thing that's white.

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Here's a good shot of Saul, Kelso Mountain and the mountains to the Northeast. He's just about to climb the white rock portion.

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And finally, the summit of Torrey's Peak.

I've only done a few 14ers but I feel like I'm in decent high altitude shape and this hike was good. It's a great workout, involves some definite tricky manuevers if you get sidetracked like we did and the white rock/knifeedge portion is definitely cool. For those of you looking for a good day climb close to Denver, I recommend it.



Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
 


  • Comments or Questions (1)
14mountain


Awesome report     2008-07-13 21:22:12
I plan to do Kelso Ridge in two weeks, your report was awesome, and helpful. Hope we have good weather like you did.



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