| Solitude on Mt. Yale
I left my house around 230am and arrived at the Denny Creek TH around 530am and began hiking around 6am. I finished in just over 6 hours which makes me very happy, I think I'm finally getting my hiking legs back! Just a heads up these pictures were taken on the way down, which may not have been the best idea due to the fact that the weather got ugly towards the end of my hike
This is my 3rd climb of the season and only the 1st where I could actually see my destination, not very motivating. (Taken near the Browns Pass/Mt Yale fork)
I really enjoyed all of the log crossings on this trail, these little creeks are roaring and beautiful with all the spring runoff.
Most of the trail is dry until 11,200 as previously stated in a TR posted by Aubrey. I wanted to give a heads up because the summer trail is obscured by snow and hopefully this may make it a little easier. After this log the trail gets a little harder to follow, but Aubrey informed me to bank to the right and not to follow the tracks leading left. (Thanks again Aubrey)
Immediately after that log there is another fallen log, follow the compacted snow trail to the right which will lead you up a short hill and back on to the summer trail.
And that's where the fun ends and your workout begins. This is the beginning of the super long non-switchback trail that leads to the summit ridge. (12,000 ft.)
And it is a damn good workout, I don't know how to express my feelings of joy!
Shortly after this interminable trail begins you get to see even more fun! Yale is like a cruel Boss, the harder you work, the more he gives you in hopes of breaking your spirit
And here's looking down from the summit cone of Yale, if you look closely you can see a climber with the trail to his left. All of the snow on this trail was frozen stiff and very little postholing was experienced which was good because I didn't bring snowshoes.
Here's another look down to the top of the ridgeline (conditions aren't as bad as they appear, the snow was rock hard)
But actually once I was on the summit cone the scrambling was very fun and the snow was frozen which made it easier to climb. Yale didn't have any nasty false summits to deal with, the only exception being one little bump that was not far at all from the summit.
This summit was awesome! Roach said you can see 30 14er summits from here and I believe it, I just wish the weather would've held off for a little longer.
And if you look closely, looking past Mt. Princeton's ridgeline you can see the Crestone group.
Here is a look at Harvard and Columbia, does anyone know the name of that long couloir on Columbia?
Anyway I enjoyed this hike immensely and only ran into 3 other people on this hike which is pretty freakin cool. I've never had that sort of solitude in the Sawatch range which was nice. Paul I hope you had a good hike!
Oh yeah, and by the way watch out for all of the horse dookie on the trail!
Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):