Mt. Lindsey – This is the 4th 14er for me and so far the most creative and challenging. We decided to do the northwest route (Class 4), what a blast!
We met in Gardner at 7am then drove to the trail head. There are lots of deer in the meadows and on the hill along the road up to the trailhead.
Buck on the right still has velvet but a THICK neck
It's a longer drive to the trailhead then we planned so leave plenty of time, we didn't start hiking until about 8:30am. This is Mark and Chance getting ready
Ready - Set
Our obligatory trailhead photo was taken by a guy who was camping near the sign. He asked us "oh by the way – what day is it?" Looked like he and his friend had been there a while!
First part of the hike is super scenic and a stroll in the park.
Boy - Oh - Boy this looks too easy
This is probably 45 minutes into the hike looking west with Blanca and Ellingwood in the background. Maybe 10K ft?
Blanca in the background - I have a grudge with that mountain
After about 5 stream crossings and some steep stuff in the trees you pop out above the headwaters and get the first view of Mt. Lindsey - We went right up the ridge.
Hmmmm - So that's the task for the day?
The top of the saddle is ~13K feet and straight up. I was pretty wiped at that point but my recipe of a fistful of aspirin and lots of water kept the altitude sickness at bay.
Keep Going - Don't give up - Please let the asprin kick in!
At the saddle we donned our helmets and made our move to the ridge. Good thing too. The class 2 route through the gully looked lag scree hell.
Interesting perspective - Mark is only 5 feet in front of me - gives some perspective on the angle
This is looking up at the first false summit along the ridge – you can barely make out Chance in the rocks above.
You can barely see Chance like a marmot in the background
The sumitt! 3 hrs and change to get there!
Mark and Chance
Mark and Chance
Mark and Me
Mark and Me
Mandatory Summit Photo - Thanks
Gotta do the mandatory pic!
We probably spent 30 minutes at the summit – enjoying the view, eating Snyder's pretzels and peanut butter and jelly on tortillas, and mesmerized by watching a helicopter haul something up the valley below us. The wind was kind of tough but not too bad if you got low to the ground.
San Luis Valley
Home of my ancestors
South – Spanish Peaks
This is a shot after our descent from the ridge. The ridge was class 4 but the rocks are all very manageable and nothing really scary. If you look on the route map on 14ers.com we probably took the western most routes of the ones described either on the ridge or just to the east side of the mountain.
Class 4 route closest to the ridge worked for us
Little bit of the Rocky Mountain Columbines that are in full bloom along the trail.
Stop and appreciate the scenery on the way down.
All in all, a great day. Weather was about 60 deg at the start and +80 and the end. No precip, but it was windy at the top.