Peak(s):  Missouri Mountain  -  14,067 feet
Mt. Belford  -  14,197 feet
Date Posted:  06/08/2011
Date Climbed:   06/05/2011
Author:  Stiffler_from_Denver
 C Coulior on Missouri and Belford  

Ascent Party: Exiled Michigander and Stiffler_from_Denver
Elevation gain 6500 feet
ScheduleSaturday 4:30 pm left Denver
6:30 Arrived in Leadville for Quincy’s Prime Rib
8:15 started up Missouri Gulch Trail
9:45 arrived at old cabin around 11,300 feet and set up camp
4:30 AM woke up
6:15 set out for Missouri Peak
10:30 Summited Missouri
1:45 started up ridge to Belford
4:30 Summited Belford

Still feeling the bitter sting of an unsuccessful trip on Little Bear in April after having climbed that nefarious Lake Como road in the middle of the night, Exiled Michigander and I set out to the Sawatch range on Saturday to get a couloir climb before conditions melted.

Camp early Sunday morning with Belford in the distance

We crossed the valley as the sun began to hit the top of Missouri Mt. Crossing the snow early in the morning before the sun hit it was a breeze; no fear of postholing.


We stashed our snowshoes and donned crampons for the remaining ascent.

Picture taken from Belford. Our route from where we stashed snowshoes till summit

going up C Coulior

Exiled Michigander on the Coulior

Exiled Michigander and Stiffler_from_Denver relaxing on summit

We glissaded part of the less steep part of the coulior on the way down then had to decide what to do next: take Elkhead Pass to Belford or head back down the valley and take the standard ridge up Belford. We decided on the latter because we needed to replenish our drinking water. Exiled Michigander had a SteriPEN which we used to purify the water flowing down the valley.
Postholing in the afternoon

starting up Belford

near summit of Belford with Missouri in background

Exiled Michigander on Summit of Belford

We got back to camp around 7:30 after refilling our water bottles for cooking. Exiled Michigander made some delicious Chili with kasha for dinner. We slep well that night having successfully summited two 14ers.

We slept in on Monday morning and made coffee and eggs and sausage for breakfast. We hiked back down to our car while passing a friendly couple from Kansas who was making their homage trip to the site of where they spent their honeymoon more than 30 years earlier.
Pretty cool! We then drove down the road 5 more miles to check out the Huron trailhead for next time. Great trip. It was a great feeling climbing up a coulior directly to the summit of Missouri!


Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

 Comments or Questions

Good job guys!
06/08/2011 20:17
That unsuccessful day on Little Bear was disheartening, so I'm glad you were able to get in a successful climbing trip while the snow was still good.


Huron TH
06/08/2011 23:01
How was the TH for Huron? Accessible?


Nice Job Guys
06/08/2011 23:38
Lots of elevation gain and a long day! All the way back down and then up Belford - nicely done. Thanks for all the info, based on your beta I'm going to give Missouri a go tomorrow either your route or one to the left depending on conditions and how I feel.


Huron TH
06/09/2011 00:08
The road to Huron is bare. I didn't however drive up the 4-wheel road. There's no snow below the 4-wheel section of road to Huron. Lots of good spots to camp at trail head as well.


Belford to Oxford
06/15/2011 00:45
How is the ridge over to Mt. Oxford, did you check it out? I'm just wondering what snow gear I might need or not need.


Belford to Oxford
06/15/2011 01:13
There's hardly any snow between the two. I doubt you need any gear.

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