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Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Need a climbing partner? Trying to form a hiking group for an outing?

Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby ameristrat » Mon Oct 15, 2012 1:10 pm

Pack in to Lake Como on Saturday afternoon (unless someone wants to lend a bada$$ vehicle to do the work for us). Climb and hike out Sunday. Driving from Denver got a group of 2-4 currently, so feel free to join!
You cannot stay on the summit forever; you have to come down again. So why bother in the first place? Just this: What is above knows what is below, but what is below does not know what is above. One climbs, one sees. One descends, one sees no longer, but one has seen. There is an art of conducting oneself in the lower regions by the memory of what one saw higher up. When one can no longer see, one can at least still know. - Rene Daumal

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Re: Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby aaronmojica » Tue Oct 16, 2012 4:57 am

I drove up and down Hwy 69 yesterday, got some good looks at the eastern aspects of the Blanca group, more than a dusting of snow currently sits above treeline.

Re: Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby ameristrat » Tue Oct 16, 2012 7:22 am

It looks warm and dry this week, so I'm counting on that to help. Also, the trail faces SW, so hopefully that will help too!

Do you think there's so much that it's just wishful thinking? I'm definitely expecting snow - bringing spikes / axe / etc.
You cannot stay on the summit forever; you have to come down again. So why bother in the first place? Just this: What is above knows what is below, but what is below does not know what is above. One climbs, one sees. One descends, one sees no longer, but one has seen. There is an art of conducting oneself in the lower regions by the memory of what one saw higher up. When one can no longer see, one can at least still know. - Rene Daumal

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Re: Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby aaronmojica » Tue Oct 16, 2012 9:45 am

I don't think it's wishful thinking, there just may be some snow/ice before you gain the summit ridge.

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Re: Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby SilverLynx » Tue Oct 16, 2012 3:32 pm

It is still a few days out, but so far the weather looks amazing for the end of this week. I think the snow and ice on the route will make it more interesting. It would make me very happy to get these two peaks before actual winter sets in and avy danger becomes a factor.
"Mountains seem to answer an increasing imaginative need in the West. More and more people are discovering a desire for them, and a powerful solace in them. At bottom, mountains, like all wildernesses, challenge our complacent conviction - so easy to lapse into - that the world has been made for humans by humans. Most of us exist for most of the time in worlds which are humanly arranged, themed and controlled. One forgets that there are environments which do not respond to the flick of a switch or the twist of a dial, and which have their own rhythms and orders of existence. Mountains correct this amnesia. By speaking of greater forces than we can possibly invoke, and by confronting us with greater spans of time than we can possibly envisage, mountains refute our excessive trust in the man-made. They pose profound questions about our durability and the importance of our schemes. They induce, I suppose, a modesty in us."
― Robert Macfarlane

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Re: Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby jdorje » Tue Oct 16, 2012 6:18 pm

The Blanca group got considerably more snow than the northern Crestones, and still appears quite white as of today. Make sure you're prepared.
-Jason Dorje Short

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Re: Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby SilverLynx » Wed Oct 17, 2012 4:19 pm

Bump.
"Mountains seem to answer an increasing imaginative need in the West. More and more people are discovering a desire for them, and a powerful solace in them. At bottom, mountains, like all wildernesses, challenge our complacent conviction - so easy to lapse into - that the world has been made for humans by humans. Most of us exist for most of the time in worlds which are humanly arranged, themed and controlled. One forgets that there are environments which do not respond to the flick of a switch or the twist of a dial, and which have their own rhythms and orders of existence. Mountains correct this amnesia. By speaking of greater forces than we can possibly invoke, and by confronting us with greater spans of time than we can possibly envisage, mountains refute our excessive trust in the man-made. They pose profound questions about our durability and the importance of our schemes. They induce, I suppose, a modesty in us."
― Robert Macfarlane

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Re: Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby emohr » Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:00 am

I just got back from Blanca on Tuesday, and the latest snow didn't dump too much. I think the deepest spot I found was about a foot, but 5 or 6 people had already postholed through. We didn't have crampons or microspikes, but they would have been nice for the final push up Blanca.

I think with the warm weather they've been having though, and assuming it doesn't snow before your trip, snow won't be too much of an issue

Re: Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby ameristrat » Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:15 am

emohr wrote:I just got back from Blanca on Tuesday, and the latest snow didn't dump too much. I think the deepest spot I found was about a foot, but 5 or 6 people had already postholed through. We didn't have crampons or microspikes, but they would have been nice for the final push up Blanca.

I think with the warm weather they've been having though, and assuming it doesn't snow before your trip, snow won't be too much of an issue


I've got a friend interested in going but doesn't have an axe / spikes / etc. If it doesn't snow, you think she's all right?
You cannot stay on the summit forever; you have to come down again. So why bother in the first place? Just this: What is above knows what is below, but what is below does not know what is above. One climbs, one sees. One descends, one sees no longer, but one has seen. There is an art of conducting oneself in the lower regions by the memory of what one saw higher up. When one can no longer see, one can at least still know. - Rene Daumal

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Re: Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby emohr » Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:18 am

Yeah, she'll definitely be good. We did it without any of that and felt really comfortable. The group with the ice axes and crampons said they were more of a hassle than a benefit.

Hope you guys have a fun trip! I'd love to see a trip report

Re: Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby ameristrat » Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:29 am

Good deal! The weather looks great, so I'm anticipating a great weekend! Thanks for the info, and we'll be sure to give that trip report a college try! :iluvbeer:
You cannot stay on the summit forever; you have to come down again. So why bother in the first place? Just this: What is above knows what is below, but what is below does not know what is above. One climbs, one sees. One descends, one sees no longer, but one has seen. There is an art of conducting oneself in the lower regions by the memory of what one saw higher up. When one can no longer see, one can at least still know. - Rene Daumal

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Re: Blanca / Ellingwood 10/20 - 10/21

Postby mtree » Thu Oct 18, 2012 11:22 am

There aren't alot of real steep or exposed areas on the Blanca climb so I don't think you'll need anything special. The final summit pitch is probably the only concern depending on your route, otherwise, just alot of careful rock navigation. Bring microspikes just in case.
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