Peak(s):  Mt. Bierstadt  -  14,060 feet
Date Posted:  07/23/2012
Date Climbed:   07/12/2012
Author:  eswebster

 Bierstadt east ridge- abyss lake- back to TH  

Headed out at 4:30 decended the boulder chute in the dark/dawn which was easy, just have to keep an eye out for loose rocks. Across the meadow, make sure to aim either way right or way left when making your way across the meadow. If you start heading directly towards the ridge you'll hit a decent sized pond... can be traversed with poles by jumping from dry spot to dry spot but will steer further right next time. The crux of the climb for me was early and late on this route. Heading up the slope to gain the ridge was a trudge, once the ridge is gained there is some route finding that needs to be done as the carins are few and far between. Lots of options though. Few hairy you fall you die spots but nothing too uncomfortable, even for someone like me from MN soloing his first 14er. One word of advice is after the class 3 scrambling on the 13,xxx point stay left. I intially head straight up and over the point and wasnt too comfortable downclimbing from that point, much easier around the left side on the ledge. Summiting from there is pretty straight forward.... literally. Once on the summit 9:30 i decided to head back without hitting the sawtooth. Had a 5:30 flight back home that i didnt want to miss. Hindsight i would have had more than enough time and energy to hit the sawtooth. Decending down to abyss lake was just class 2 scrambling... the lake and meadow was perfect for lunch and the views were amazing. The pain in the arse was the hike back up the boulder chute you decend initially. 800ft of hell on the way out, couldnt put it behind me quick enough. Would have been much more fun hitting the sawtooth and catching a ride or hiking back from the Evans summit. First 14er or any peak in the bag and have the itch for more. Looking to hit Crestone peak (sp?) in early october, if the conditions permit. Great dunes will be great to see either way.

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