| Willow Creek-nice hike
BTW: The trailhead is on Galena Avenue, not Galena Street. Gerry Roach and 14ers.com say it is street. I don‘t think it matters a whole bunch. There are only 5 streets in the town of Crestone anyways, only one of which is named Galena. However, to save you the trouble worrying, it should be Galena Avenue.
Another trip with the pro Jean Roy. We left the trailhead at 3 AM. Early starts are always tough. We managed.
The sun began to rise as we approached the lake. Follow the route above the waterfall and cliffs.
Above the lake, Kit Carson came into view. Jean was checking the route description to find the route.
The route becomes steep from this point to the saddle. It was tough on the calves, but no match for Jean Roy.
The snow is mostly melted. There is still a snow field, but the route we took involved no snow. We did not bring or need crampons or axe.
Once the saddle is gained, the route becomes easier.
The ridge was nice after the tough climb to the saddle. Jean can be spotted ahead. Challenger point is within grasp and Kit Carson is behind.
We summitted Challenger Point around 7:30 AM. The Sand Dunes can be seen from this point to my right. Jean is soaking in his 54th summit. I think he was also looking at the Crestones since they were next and last for his adventure.
We spent no time on the summit since we would be coming back anyways. We began the traverse to Kit Carson. The avenue was quite wide, and not too scary.
Be careful to watch for the right time to ascend Kit Carson. There is a rock with surveyors tape on it. This is the point when we went up Kit Carson. There are a few cairns to follow, but there isn't a strong trail. We had to choose our own lines up the face. This is the section classified 2 or 3. Jean said, "If this is class 3, it is easy class 3." I didn't think it was as easy as Jean did, but relatively easy for class 3. It is steep.
We reached summit at 8:30 AM.
Challenger Point can be seen behind us. It seems so gentle from here.
We descended with no trouble. However, there were some ladies who got lost the day before. We were talking to them at camp at the trailhead. They missed the avenue on the descent. Pay attention to the route and don't miss a turn. It could get nasty if you do.
On the way down, Jean missed the summit of Challenger Point by staying below it. I went back to the top. Jean's way was faster with less climbing. I guess I just wanted to say I did Challenger Point twice in one day.
Below are some nice shots on the way down. There were a few Jean spottings in some of them.
Can you see Jean?
Just some nice pics.
Can you see Jean?
I am trying to point to where we came from. My finger barely made the shot. I took this myself. That's my excuse.
Some nice views of the lake.
These goats were all over at the lake campsites. They were fearless. Almost annoying. The campers around just ignored them.
The nice town of Crestone came into view.
We finally finished around 12:30 PM. Total trip time 9.5 hours.
Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):