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Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Colorado 13er questions, conditions, and other info should be posted here. Also includes topics related to 13ers.com. 13er Trip Reports
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Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby hvolmer » Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:14 pm

For Mt. Powell only (no C or Eagles Nest), I've looked at several trip reports here and elsewhere and seem to be missing some basic info (or I glossed over it): From the Piney Lake trail, how long is the RT, what's the elevation gain like? I swear there was a full-on trip report but I can't find it. (There's only so many picture reports I can read...)


I see that Kneeknocker is around 11,500' and it doesn't look like there's much distance left to ascend the final 2000'. Am I interpreting the pictures right? Looks like it might be rough after having a couple weeks off with my daughter home on leave.

Re: Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby Jon Frohlich » Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:21 pm

I want to say 10-11 miles with 4500 feet of gain. It's a pretty decent day for sure. I don't recall the elevation of Kneeknocker but you descend 200-300 from Kneeknocker and then go up steep grass and talus to the summit. My partner and I both said it was the hardest class 2 we had ever done. It took us a solid 9 hours RT.

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Re: Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby PatsSox09 » Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:32 pm

agreed....it's much harder than the stats indicate. You gain nothing for the first 3 or 4 miles (even lose 300 feet or so), then it's all at once. The descent from Kneeknocker Pass is tricky, and the last stretch to the summit takes forever. Overall elevation gain including ups and downs is definitely over 5,000'. I think the mileage you see is accurate, 9-10 miles...but again, much harder than the stats indicate.

Edit: You'll def need to descend 100-200 feet from Kneeknocker at least to get to the main summit massif unless you want to do some class 3-4 scrambling along the ridge crest from there (i've seen trip reports on that latter option)

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Re: Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby smoove » Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:38 pm

This is what I recorded from two years ago.
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Re: Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby hvolmer » Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:40 pm

Thanks guys. Sounds like I interpreted things correctly (guess I'm getting better at this :wink: ).

My last "real" peaks were Oxford/Belford and except for a quick morning on Flora (which wasn't really any sort of effort), we've been fully engaged with the sofa cushions for most of two weeks. I don't want a grueling slog this weekend. I think we will save this one for later on.

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Re: Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby kaiman » Sat Aug 31, 2013 8:55 am

I have climbed Mount Powell twice as a day trip and overnighter. If you have the time I would suggest backpacking in and camping somewhere below Kneeknocker Pass as it makes for a quicker summit the next day.

People's descriptions of descending a couple hundred feet from the pass to avoid the difficulties are spot on, although the ridge is only Class 3 with some considerable exposure (if you ate interested in attempting it).

Either way its a nice area and you will definitely enjoy it.

kaiman

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Re: Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby James Dziezynski » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:48 pm

Slight plug for my book Best Summit Hikes in Colorado -- it has Mt Powell as one of the hikes, as hiked from Piney Lake. Of course it's great if you pick up a copy, but why not glance at it at any outdoorsy place to get the beta? Send me a PM if you need more info, I'd be glad to send over. It's a tough hike, particularly finding the right spot to depart towards Kneeknocker Saddle -- but pretty fun!
Check out my book Best Summit Hikes in Colorado at http://amzn.to/WKkWOH

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Re: Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby Monster5 » Mon Sep 02, 2013 7:56 pm

Just a heads up - one could also ascend the west/climber's left side of Powell's S Ridge via decent goat trails and climb through an obvious notch, rejoining the standard route on the south slopes ~12500ish. The notch is brief class 3; route is class 1/2 otherwise. This avoids both the ridge difficulties and the elevation loss off Kneeknocker.

The notch is lower right here prior to the spicier section:
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"The road to alpine climbing is pocked and poorly marked, ending at an unexpectedly closed gate 5 miles from the trailhead." - MP user Beckerich

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Re: Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby awake » Mon Sep 02, 2013 8:16 pm

Not sure if I'm the only one, but I had a tough time with route finding up Mt Powell. There's a trail, but I somehow kept losing it, and ended up having to turn around.

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Re: Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby PatsSox09 » Mon Sep 02, 2013 9:51 pm

awake wrote:Not sure if I'm the only one, but I had a tough time with route finding up Mt Powell. There's a trail, but I somehow kept losing it, and ended up having to turn around.



agreed. the steep climb to Kneeknocker Pass below treeline saw the trail kinda disappear in the willows one bit. There was/is a good TR here on the site that advised angling towards the creek (right) whenever you lost it (on the ascent)...I followed that advice and was able to refind it for the most part.

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Re: Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby a94buff » Tue Sep 03, 2013 10:00 am

awake wrote:Not sure if I'm the only one, but I had a tough time with route finding up Mt Powell. There's a trail, but I somehow kept losing it, and ended up having to turn around.


Had same experience myself; went after it in Sept a couple years ago and felt like there were a number of well-used trails (possible some were game trails) below treeline after departing the main trail. I lost the plot on both the ascent and the descent.

James' book is a good read and well worth buying; have used it for a lot of CO summit hikes including Powell.

Re: Need Mt Powell (Gore) details

Postby mtnfiend » Wed Sep 04, 2013 8:22 am

awake wrote:Not sure if I'm the only one, but I had a tough time with route finding up Mt Powell. There's a trail, but I somehow kept losing it, and ended up having to turn around.


If a trail is needed to get to the top of a mountain, then the gore is probably not the place for you.....

Also, the lack of a tidal wave of info on the gore is also what makes it fun. Enjoy the pioneering feel and go explore!
Didn't I ever tell you.....Bumble's bounce!!!

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