| San Luis Peak via the Stewart Creek TH
Starting off the day by eating a 5:00 a.m. breakfast overlooking a great sunrise.
Me and my brother camped about 15-minutes from the Stewart Creek TH. He had other plans that day so I was to be hiking solo.
The first thing I noticed once on trail was the beaver dams. Lots and lots of beaver dams. One of the dams was being utilized by mother nature to reclaim some of the land that was once used by the old jeep trail.
Many of the dams were covered with grasses and wildflowers.
The first half of the hike is through a very mature pine forest.
Lots and lots of fallen pine. You have to hop over about a dozen trees that have fallen across the path throughout the day. No big deal. You also pass an old cabin. I totally missed it on the way up. I must have been goal oriented.
After treeline, the wildflowers really came out.
I had plenty of Old Man to keep me company on the hike.
Looking back over the trail, the background was showing some pretty good mountain layers.
You can see that the beaver ponds continue all the way to treeline. I guess there's not much building materials beyond that, obviously.
Once atop the ridge/saddle, you are greeted wtih this view. San Luis Peak is off frame to the right, and up.
The obligitory summit shot. Stewart Peak, (13,986 ft), in the background.....
.....and the benchmark shot.
There was one other person on the summit upon my arrival, and by the time I left, there were a total of eight, with two more enroute at about 30 minutes away. I was glad to have company seeing as I had left a spoon and cooking pot back at camp. The guy before me had both for me to borrow. This is the kind of thing to be expected for a first 14er hike for the year. At least I didn't forget the camera!
I also posted a far off view of Wetterhorn and Ucompahgre at the bottom of the trip report.
On the way down I decided that it was time to glissade. The trail bi-sected the top 15 feet of a patch of snow that extented almost all the way to the creek at the bottom.
After putting on my rain pants I was ready to go. I didn't have my ice axe, but I did have two sturdy wood hiking sticks. I was on my way. The hiking sticks worked great for braking, but for steering -- not so much. The slope of the snow slowly pulled me to the right side so I would have to stand up, walk to the left side, and off I go again! After four or five "pitches", I was at the bottom.
As I was decending into treeline, I was joined by several of the San Luis locals.
I made it down to the car at exactly 1:00 p.m. No rush. Seven hours on the mountain. It was a perfect day with very few clouds while on the summit as well as on the way down.
Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):