Peak:  Mt. Elbert (14er)
 Route:  East Ridge
 Range:  Sawatch
 Posted By:  Markwise
 Date of Info:  02/18/2012
 Date Posted:  02/19/2012

East Ridge route is a fantastic route for Elbert! The 4WD road was not driveable but very compacted snow and great for hiking. We put on snowshoes at the bridge for the 4WD TH. They were not likely necessary yet but easier to wear than carry at this point. The trench was very compacted and made for great hiking up to the ridge proper. At 11700 on the ridge, in a small meadow, the trench inexplicably went two directions. We were unsure of which choice to make and went right. Ended up following someone‘s fresh tracks ahead of us up to 11800. At 12500 we stashed snowshoes. Wished we‘d kept them for another 200 feet as the slope above 12500 had some minor-postholing. Above 12700 no need for snowshoes. From 13400 up to about 13800 was the steepest portion of the ascent and we were able to follow faint switchbacks from the summer trail to help. Above 13800 mostly wind-blown snow and just made a bee-line to the summit.

Photos (click for slideshow):
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