Peak(s):  Mt. Sherman  -  14,036 feet
Date Posted:  06/20/2013
Date Climbed:   06/19/2013
Author:  trinkner
 Mt. Sherman - Standard Southwest Approach  

Stunning weather helped make this climb pretty easy. We parked at the Leavick site and hiked along the snow-free 4WD road to the gate at about 12,000. Passenger cars with 2WD could easily drive to this gate if you want to make this climb shorter. Even a Prius was parked at the gates, so ground clearance isn't necessary. The climb itself was free of snow except for one snow ascent of a few hundred feet; the snow was heavily packed and offered firm footing. I used trekking poles and never felt the need for an ice axe or snow shoes. Toward the summit there was another very brief horizontal snow crossing (snow covering the trail, with some exposure to a talus slope) where again I felt very comfortable without an ice axe. The westerly winds were fierce at the summit, but they were almost unnoticeable one you descend off the ridge line. Wild flowers were abundant. No storm clouds whatsoever formed -- only a few thin and spread-out high-altitude whispers of clouds. Mammals seen on the hike included marmots and picas. Bird species included a White-tailed Ptarmigan a few hundred vertical feet above the gate, nesting American Pipits, and several soaring Common Ravens. Post-climb burgers at the red-painted Moose Caboose roadside restaurant (with benches outside) about 10 miles or so west of Fairplay on 285 were superb as well. :-)

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

 Comments or Questions

Thanks for the TR
06/20/2013 16:49
Great info. Appreciate the TR. I'll be climbing on the 22st.


Thanks for the TR
06/20/2013 23:02
what have the temps been like? I'm climbing Mt. Sherman and Mt. Massive 7/1 and 7/2. Thanks for the TR.


06/21/2013 05:11
Yesterday, the temperature was perfect 14er weather: in the 40s when we left the car at 7:30 and probably in the 50s at the summit. Back at the car at about 11,200 feet at 1:00, it was easily in the 70s and I shed all layers except shorts and a t-shirt. Even on the windy summit, I only wore tights, shorts, t-shirt, a long-sleeve polypro shirt, and a gore-tex shell. It was extremely windy at the summit -- so much so that we had trouble standing still for the obligatory summit photo. I wished I had brought light gloves for the summit. While on the western side of the ridge (during most of the day, including the approach and descent) the wind was just a pleasant breeze. There was a snow patch where you could glissade down from the ridge -- maybe 75 yards or so, if you're looking to glissade. For me, it wasn't worth the bother of putting on snow pants and getting out my ice axe, so I just hiked down the narrowest part of the snow field. Have fun!

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