Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

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Hiker Mike
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by Hiker Mike » Sun Sep 06, 2020 9:53 am

Okay, I'll join in.

Grays/Torreys Peak Combo-2004-An early fall snow storm dumped a ton of snow and after only a couple hours of slogging through it, I gave up and came back down.
Grays/Torreys Peak Combo-2005-On this early June hike, again more snow. We made to Grays but not Torreys. The steepness of the snow loaded trail up Torreys gave us concern amongst other things.
Grays/Torreys Peak Combo-2006-Clear sailing this day and we made it to both summits. After hiking up the trail to Torreys, I was glad we made turned around the previous year.

Mt. Princeton-2012-I simply ran out of gas at the summit ridge after hiking from the lower trail head. Two days later I gained the summit after driving my rented Jeep up to the upper trail head.

Mt. Harvard-2014-In the trail head parking lot at 5am, the sole of my left boot comes off! No summit that day.
Mt. Harvard-2015-Misty weather had me concerned but I pushed on despite it. Until, just as my right boot set foot on the first of the Class 2 section, a huge clap of thunder hit and I thought, NOPE!, and turned around.
Mt. Harvard-2016-Finally made it to the top.
"Just because you love the mountains doesn't mean the mountains love you."
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painless4u2
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by painless4u2 » Sun Sep 06, 2020 11:51 am

Castle via West Face Route from Conundrum Creek. Absolutely horrific. After MILES of loose talus, with seeming MILES to go, gave up. YUK.
Capitol Peak all the way from Snowmass via Moon Lakes. Made it to K2 and not prepared to discover a huge cornice "wall" blocking our way on top. Gave up with tail firmly tucked between my legs.
Quandary West Ridge. Finding snow, forced off route into no-man's land. Should have never gotten where we were. :shock:
Eolus. My first 14er group/ascent and got fogged in right before the "Sidewalk in the Sky". Our group leader called it, sadly. :cry:
Bad decisions often make good stories.

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In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps. Proverbs 16:9
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MtnHub
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by MtnHub » Sun Sep 06, 2020 3:15 pm

I've been quite successful in attaining my summit goals, although over the years, I've had a few aborts.

Only twice have my initial attempts been thwarted: my first attempt up Crestone Needle when my partner and I tried an alternative route and got off-route; and my first ascent of Capitol when we ran into bad weather at K2 -- fog and poor visibility.

Out of 17 attempts up Longs, only twice have I had to turn around, once because of ice in the Trough, and my last attempt in 2018 when after getting less than an hour's sleep, I just didn't feel up to continuing.

There have been only a couple other repeat attempts that I've been unsuccessful in (bad weather or off-route), so I feel very fortunate in all of my climbing experiences.
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DeTour
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by DeTour » Mon Sep 07, 2020 8:01 pm

The summit is more satisfying on a peak which you were previously denied.

Pyramid - turned back at the saddle in 2014. We were moving slowly, low on energy, and conditions were foggy/drizzly/snowy and not appearing to improve. Went back the following year with better energy, earlier start and great weather to summit.

El Diente to Mt. Wilson traverse - turned back In 2008 after taking forever to get across the gendarmes, getting too late in the day. Made some bad decisions on the descent, got way off-route and had our worst experience in the mountains. Took 11 years to get back there, but successfully completed the traverse in 2019, pure joy.

Capitol - turned back in 2018 after crossing the knife edge, due to light but clearly visible precipitation moving in (and again, us moving slowly, getting too late in the day). One week ago we reached an extraordinarily satisfying summit.
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supranihilest
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by supranihilest » Mon Sep 07, 2020 8:31 pm

For a few with successful re-dos:
El Diente->Mount Wilson->Wilson Peak, summer 2016: Not enough snow on El Diente's north face, I got a few hundred feet up the loose, crappy gully with plenty of rockfall around me and turned around since it was too slow and dangerous.
El Diente->Mount Wilson->Wilson Peak, summer 2017: Turned around at Rock of Ages saddle in early morning darkness. I was just too tired to give it a real shot so I called it.
Wilson Peak, El Diente, Mount Wilson, summer 2018: got each peak individually by the standard route, south slopes, and southwest slopes respectively.
La Plata Peak, winter 2016-17: Extreme depression and suicidal ideation. I got to the bottom of the Class 3 headwall on the winter route and realized I wasn't thinking clearly and would probably hurt or kill myself, whether unintentionally through poor decision making, or simply off myself intentionally. In a moment of lucidity I turned around. I got this one a few months later when I was more clear headed, then did Ellingwood Ridge in 2018.
Little Bear Peak, April 2018: I did the Blanca-Ellingwood traverse and planned to do Little Bear the next day, but it rained overnight and everything was coated in a thin layer of glaze ice. Pretty easy choice not to climb. I soloed it in early summer.
North Maroon, 2018: I climbed Maroon and didn't want to solo the traverse so I descended Maroon and got to about 12,500' or so on North Maroon's standard route when it began to rain. I turned around and went back two days later to get it successfully.
Kelso Ridge November Grid Slot: Massive blizzard on my first attempt. Bad enough that I couldn't stand up and couldn't see more than a few feet in front of me. I still somehow made it to the bottom of Kelso Ridge before turning around and navigating back to the road with GPS. I went back a week later and got my November grid slot.
Mount Hood, Oregon, Pearly Gates, April 2018: It rained and/or blizzarded every single day for nearly two weeks straight. We went south to Mount Shasta, which we failed on (see below), then came back and got Hood on my final day in Oregon.
Mount Audubon, February 2017: Southeast ridge, group size too large.
Mount Audubon, February 2018: Southeast ridge, winds so high we couldn't stand.
Mount Audubon, December 2019: Standard route, winds so high we couldn't stand. I went back later in the month and got it for my 100th ranked 13er for the calendar year.
(Yes, the easiest peak on this entire list took me four goddamn tries.)

Unsuccessful climbs with no successful re-dos:
Island Peak, Nepal, 2016: Got to Island Peak base camp and had severe altitude sickness including Cheyne-Stokes respiration. I went to sleep, which I probably shouldn't have, and woke up feeling OK. We climbed to about 19,000 feet and the breathing issues came back, so I decided to turn around. I thought I was going to die or be helicoptered out of there.
Mount Rainier, Washington, Kautz Glacier 2017, independent trip: Our tent blew away in 60+ mph winds and flew off the Turtle Snowfield and was never seen again. It was getting dark and I immediately had the team turn around instead of try to survive the night out.
Mount Rainier, Washington, Liberty Ridge 2018, independent trip: Difficult glacier conditions on the Carbon Glacier took us into a massive crevasse field on the northwest side of the glacier and we ended up not being able to safely navigate out of it onto the ridge. It was also extremely hot and snow conditions were absolute crap. Turned around. Bonus success: Mount Baker's spectacular north ridge a few days later.
Aconcagua, Argentina, independent trip: Went to the wrong camp just following the people ahead of us in a blizzard instead of thinking for ourselves, which blew our itinerary. Documented here: https://www.14ers.com/php14ers/triprepo ... trip=18570.
Pico de Orizaba, Mexico, April 2018: Turned around at the base of the glacier (~16,000') due to lightning.
Massive Mania, summer 2018?: Got onto Massive's north ridge early in the morning and the sky had shifted from night darkness to green to yellow to pitch black with torrential downpour, hail, and near constant lightning. Obvious bail.
Longs Peak, February 2018: Absolute garbage snow conditions in the Trough. Got to maybe 12,000' or so and we were swimming in chest deep powder. Big ol' bail time.
Longs Peak, February 2020: Extreme winds slowed us down. We went a little ways past the Keyhole just past noon to scout it and turned around. Bonus success: Bierstadt, Evans, the Sawtooth, "West Evans", and Mount Spalding the next day.
Mount Shasta, Casaval Ridge, April 2019: Extreme winds past the "technical" traverse portion of the ridge. Forward progress was painfully slow so we bailed.

Close calls:
Mount Yale, East Ridge, Spring 2016: Got summit fever and pushed past safe snow conditions to reach the summit. Triggered an avalanche while descending, alone, on a route I don't think I told anyone I was doing. Didn't get carried very far but learned right then and there not to push snow conditions too far and always tell someone where I'm going.

I'm sure there are others but those are the ones that come to me off the top of my head.
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by ahworth » Mon Sep 07, 2020 9:15 pm

Even though it isn’t an “official” 14er- North Eulos was my first missed summit back in July of 2012. At the time I was not too concerned, one of my partners wasn’t feeling well and we had summited the other 3 in the basin. And after all North Eulos wasn’t even an official 14er. 7 years later I made the trip back to Chicago Basin to summit North Eulos for #57. Lists.🙄 As it turns out, it does feel like a real 14er if it’s the only mountain you summit- I was 4 months post ACL replacement so figured I had pushed the knee enough with the backpack and 1 summit.

Wilson Peak July of 2014- we had been hiking in a light rain off and on up to the Rock of Ages saddle, but pushed on to the next saddle. Stopped and looked at the rain clouds moving in and wet glistening rock we would be crossing to the peak and decided it was not our day to summit. Decided to stay the night in Telluride and try the next day. Was awakened at midnight by a heavy thunderstorm but still decided to give it a try, even though a flash flood watch was issued for the area. We drove through rain, with water and mud coming down the mountainside and across the road, up to the trailhead. Got out and looked at each other and simultaneously said “we have no business being up here today”, and drove home. Came back the next year with my husband and summited.
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Scott P
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by Scott P » Mon Sep 07, 2020 11:23 pm

supranihilest wrote:
Mon Sep 07, 2020 8:31 pm
Mount Yale, East Ridge, Spring 2016: Got summit fever and pushed past safe snow conditions to reach the summit. Triggered an avalanche while descending, alone, on a route I don't think I told anyone I was doing. Didn't get carried very far but learned right then and there not to push snow conditions too far and always tell someone where I'm going.
Where on the route did the avalanche happen? We did a 14ers.com trip there in 3/8/2008, in bad weather conditions and it seemed like a pretty low risk route as long as you stay on the ridge.
I'm slow and fat. Unfortunately, those are my good qualities.
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climbingcue
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by climbingcue » Tue Sep 08, 2020 6:34 am

Scott P wrote:
Mon Sep 07, 2020 11:23 pm
supranihilest wrote:
Mon Sep 07, 2020 8:31 pm
Mount Yale, East Ridge, Spring 2016: Got summit fever and pushed past safe snow conditions to reach the summit. Triggered an avalanche while descending, alone, on a route I don't think I told anyone I was doing. Didn't get carried very far but learned right then and there not to push snow conditions too far and always tell someone where I'm going.
Where on the route did the avalanche happen? We did a 14ers.com trip there in 3/8/2008, in bad weather conditions and it seemed like a pretty low risk route as long as you stay on the ridge.
I was thinking the samething, if you stay on the standard route it should be pretty low risk.
Consecutive months with at least one 14er, 40 months and counting...
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supranihilest
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by supranihilest » Tue Sep 08, 2020 7:53 am

Scott P wrote:
Mon Sep 07, 2020 11:23 pm
supranihilest wrote:
Mon Sep 07, 2020 8:31 pm
Mount Yale, East Ridge, Spring 2016: Got summit fever and pushed past safe snow conditions to reach the summit. Triggered an avalanche while descending, alone, on a route I don't think I told anyone I was doing. Didn't get carried very far but learned right then and there not to push snow conditions too far and always tell someone where I'm going.
Where on the route did the avalanche happen? We did a 14ers.com trip there in 3/8/2008, in bad weather conditions and it seemed like a pretty low risk route as long as you stay on the ridge.
It happened traversing below one of the gendarmes on the ridge. I don't remember which one, exactly, but it was hot, there were no clouds, and it was south facing. I was skirting the gendarmes instead of climbing them and triggered the slide right at the interface of rock and snow where heat was radiating most. It was a wet point release, fortunately, not a wet slab, but it ran several hundred feet into the bowl. And I agree, the east ridge is generally a low avalanche risk route, but that's why this was a close call - I didn't listen to my training or conditions and hit that low probability lottery.
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by ellenmseb » Tue Sep 08, 2020 2:39 pm

I can finally contribute to this thread after last Saturday. I had hoped to hit East Cretone, Northeast Crestone, and Broken Hand Peak as add-ons to the traverse. I failed the latter 2.

Climbing up to NE crestone looked doable (4 or low 5 depending on whom you ask). but the traverse or downclimb to the NE Crestone-E Crestone saddle was beyond my climbing ability. Traversing from the Crestone-E Crestone saddle looked too exposed, so I tried downclimbing from E Crestone and made it about halfway with much difficulty. But then upclimbing the same line was extremely easy. This reminded me that even if I made it up to NE crestone, I could be stuck and unable to downclimb. I think that opting out was the right call. Good thing I don't really care about unnamed 14ers anyway. I'm not driving all the way back to South Wilson lol

I also "failed" (skipped) Broken Hand Peak the same day due to fading daylight and headlamp battery. I invented the pantslamp and was glad I didn't have to rely on it for an extra hour. Someday I hope to go back for the cool-looking Crestone 13ers.
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by vondiesel » Tue Sep 08, 2020 7:44 pm

Sherman from Iowa Gulch, September 2016. I was in shorts and a t-shirt expecting a warm day. Cold winds were coming down the gully between Sherman and Sheridan, and people coming down told me it was colder with gusts hard enough to nearly knock you over up near the summit. I aborted and learned the lesson to get some hiking pants and other layers. Successfully summited from Fourmile Creek July 2017... wearing pants and a jacket.

Decalibron, July 2019. Got tired (I'm originally from FL, so I claim that as my excuse). My previous 14er hikes had been up and down. I wasn't used to staying above 13k, which is most of the loop, and I just didn't have the lungs for it that day. I got DeCaLi, but skipped Bross. Haven't been back yet, but I'll get it one day. Bross is ugly, but the rest of the Kite Lake area is really pretty so it's worth it for the views.
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Re: Aborted Attempts and Successful Re-dos

Post by RJ_Greenhorn24 » Wed Sep 09, 2020 7:16 am

Precipice Peak in 2018. I was hiking with a super slow partner. Bushwhacked and dealt with the burning quads all the way to the saddle just to reach it and see a nasty storm rolling in from the Gunnison area. We tried to follow the river down thinking it would get us back to the truck without the bushwhacking but of course we reached a spot where it dropped off about 20'. Had to climb back over a ridge and bushwhack in the end anyways - in brutal hail no less. The summit looked so close that I regretted not going for it, but after completing it last season I was happy that I didn't go for it. The concentration some parts required made the section between the saddle and summit take much longer than I would have expected. In a way, I was happy to go back for that one and it made the summit that much sweeter!
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