| Quick Afternoon in the San Juans: Governor Basin
"T 5" 13,436
Stoney Mountain 12,698
Trailhead: Various spots in Governor Basin
~4.7 Miles, ~2400 Gain
This was the first of day of a 3 day Telluride 13eener extravaganza. My wife and I left Denver at 6:00 AM and made the long drive to the glorious San Juan's. After dodging the crowds still left from the holiday weekend, we finally made it into Governor Basin. I started hiking up my first objective, "T 5," around 12:30 PM.
I parked at a flat area near the Virginius Mine in Governor Basin and started up a loose talus gully towards "T 5." I suppose I could have saved myself 100 feet of gain and a fraction of a mile if I started at the mining road at the base of Point 12,288. It didn't take long to reach a higher basin where I could get a better idea of the character of "T 5." From this basin, the views of Yankee Boy Basin and St. Sophia ridge were superb.
"T 5" from the upper basin.
St Sophia ridge and Mt. Emma on the climb up "T 5."
From the high basin, I headed for the Mendota - "T 5" saddle. Since the ridge to "T 5" didn't look like it would be easy to climb from the saddle proper, I went up a gully on the left (east) side of the saddle. As usual, the climb up this gully was on some of the finest San Juan Scree.
Looking down the scree gully to the ridge to "T 5"
Yankee Boy basin from the false summit of "T 5."
The real summit of "T 5" from the false summit.
After reaching the ridge, it was a mellow ridge hike up and over the false summit and onward to the summit. Excellent views all around and after a short break, I returned to the car via the same path. I arrived at the car at 2:00 PM.
Neat summit rock.
Yankee Boy Basin from summit of "T 5."
Telluride from summit of "T 5."
Ridge to Mendota Peak.
Route up "T 5."
The weather was crystal clear so I decided to go ahead and climb the nearby 12ver Stoney Mountain. We moved the car to the Mountain Top mine and I started hiking up a faint trail around 2:30 PM.
I followed the trail until the trail disappeared around the Stoney Mountain - Emma saddle. From the saddle, I hiked on a class 2 ridge towards Stoney Mountain. The last few hundred feet of climbing to the summit of Stoney Mountain was excellent class 3 scrambling on solid rock. I mainly stayed on the ridge proper, and places where I couldn't stay on the ridge proper, I climbed on the south side of the ridge.
Scramble to the summit of Stoney Mountain.
St Sophia Ridge and Mt. Emma from Stoney Mountain.
Sneffles from Stoney Mountain.
"T 5" from the summit of Stoney Mountain.
Teakettle from the summit of Stoney Mountain.
Potosi from the summit of Stoney Mountain.
Looking back the summit ridge of Stoney Mountain.
Class 3 summit scramble up Stoney Mountain.
Abruptly the summit of Stoney Mountain arrived. Very fun peak. I absorbed the views and returned to the car around 4:00 PM. Although short, these peaks were worth the climb for the excellent views of Telluride, St Sophia Ridge and Yankee Boy Basin.
Wildflowers in Governor Basin.
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