Planned on getting an early start on attempting the four peaks (well 3 3/4 peaks, Bross will have to be revisited at some point if and when it opens). Met my friend Jeff in Fairplay at 0300. Arrived at the trail head at Kite Lake a bit after 4. There were a few cars already there with a small group getting ready to head up.
We left the parking area a bit after 0430. Beautiful moonlight lit the trail. As we climbed, we could see lights from the parking lot as we climbed, more climbers on the way up. It was a bit chilly as we gained altitude as the wind started to get a bit stronger.
We headed to Democrat first, passing a few groups that had already been to the summit and were heading down. Reached the summit around 0645. Spent about a half hour on Democrat and headed back down to the saddle towards Cameron. The first part of the climb past the saddle towards Cameron was a bit steeper with a looser surface than Democrat. We soon hit the summit of Cameron. Arrived at the summit at 0900. I was surprised on how flat and large the summit was. We headed down the saddle towards Lincoln. Lincoln actually looked like the climb would be harder/steeper than Cameron, but I thought that is was a bit easier. There was still a bit of snow on the trail heading up Lincoln.
Reached the summit of Lincoln around 0945 and took a short break. From Lincoln, you could see several people on the summit of Bross. Kind of disappointing as the Bross summit is still closed, yet people ignored the closed trail signs. After our break, we headed down the saddle to Cameron and headed over the Bross. This was probably the easiest part of the loop. We reached the spot where the summit to Bross was closed around 1045 and headed down the trail that skirts the summit. There was quite a bit of snow on this portion of the trail. Once past this area, the trail got steep and very loose. Even with poles, it was quite an effort to make it down this section.
Finally made it to a section where it flattened our slightly, but still very loose surface. You can see Kite lake from this area, but it is still a ways a way. We finally reached the parking area at 1230. We had stopped quite a bit taking pics and admiring the scenery. All in all, an awesome day.
Mount Democrat summit
Me on Democrat
Jeff on Democrat
Looking towards Cameron from the false summit on Democrat
Me with Democrat in the background
Sunrise over Bross
Looking towards Cameron
Jeff on Cameron with Lincoln in the background
Me on Lincoln
Pike's Peak in the distance
Bross from Cameron
Looking down the ridge towards Cameron from Lincoln
Sadly, many ignored it.
Trail that skirts the Bross summit (the higher one covered with snow)
Looking down the trail skirting the Bross summit (past the snow area and past the really loose section)
Kite Lake from the Cameron - Bross saddle. I swear there is a parking lot there somewhere.