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 Peak(s):  La Plata Peak  -  14,336 feet
 Post Date:  07/27/2009
 Date Climbed:   07/22/2009
 Posted By:  spong0949

 Good Choice   

Nathan, James, Brad, & I left Longmont at 2am Planning to do the Ellingwood Ridge on La Plata Peak. We‘d studied it a few days before and were pretty nervous about the length of the climb and the exposure involved, but we wanted to try it anyway. After reading lots of comments and trip reports I told James, "just for the record - this is a BAD IDEA." We‘re all pretty new to climbing 14ers. This was Nathan and Brad‘s first one and Jame‘s fourth. I‘d done more but nothing that sounded this difficult. On top of that, none of us got more than two hours of sleep. Right before we left, Brad decided this was a bad idea too. We all finally decided to just go the standard route to the summit. When we reached the point were we could see the Ellingwood Ridge, we realized we‘d for sure made the right decision. The ridge looked very long and intimidating in real life! It took us almost 6 hrs. to reach the summit on the STANDARD ROUTE. If we would have tried the ridge, there‘s no way we would have made it. We weren‘t in good enough shape, didn‘t get enough sleep, and didn‘t have enough experience to attempt it. The way we went was still really fun and challenging for us so it was a great day. Weather was nice too.

Here‘s some pictures of Ellingwood Ridge:
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Pics from the hike:
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James would appreciate this one:
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Nathan made it to the top before the rest of us. Here‘s Brad and James reaching the summit.
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At the top:
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Nathan‘s Victory Pepsi! Good Job Bro!
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Brad‘s Victory Peps...er...uh.....water
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On the way down we found one spot to slide down on the snow

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On our way down, at this spot a rock fell and FLEW (hundreds of feet) all the way down this steep grassy hill. Sooooo glad nobody was on there way up down there. We couldn‘t believe how fast and far it went. Now I know why some climbers wear helmets. It woulda took someones head off!
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Back to the start with La Plata in the background! YES!!!!
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Really fun hike. After this we decided no more climbing 14ers without enough sleep. I‘m still tired a week later! Next week - Massive!!



Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
 


  • Comments or Questions (2)
maddog54


Good Choice indeed     2009-07-27 17:18:36
The NW trail is really well maintained..kudos to the 14ner Initiative or Nat‘l Park service for a great job on trail maintenance. Had to be one of the best trails I‘ve hiked


cosherpa

Victory Pepsi     2009-07-30 20:50:48
Glad to see you guys finally posted! As usual, it was nice sharing a peak with you and James again. Perhaps we‘ll see you on top of Massive!

Kenny



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