Peak(s):  Uncompahgre Peak  -  14,309 feet
Date Posted:  12/22/2015
Modified:  03/06/2017
Date Climbed:   11/07/2015
Author:  XterraRob
 Uncompahgre, my Padre   

This was my first time ever using snowshoes and mountaineering boots so it was a fun learning experience. Boots ended up being a bit too restrictive after I began to hike due to my feet swelling. Had to stop and adjust them about a dozen times until I got the right fit. Once I came out of the trees and started my way across the basin, threw on the snow shoes and was so happy I did lol.

There wasn't much snow in the trees as I hiked higher. Once you get into the basin, there is a mix between wind scoured fields and severely wind drifted powder (5+ ft).



Had to park about a mile from the trailhead due to deep snow:

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Uncompahgre peaking out:

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Looking back near the Trailhead (somewhere down there...):

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Uncompahgre again:

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Break Time:

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This area of the trail was particularly wind scoured:

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South side of the climb up Uncompahgre had a lot of deep wet snow:

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Follow the cairns!

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Wind scoured and very very hard snow:

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Summit:

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Sunshine & Redcloud left of center:

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Some more scenery:

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Time to head out:

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Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
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Comments or Questions
Jay521

Nice!
12/22/2015 13:49
One of my very favorite areas in the state. Excellent photos!


XterraRob

Thank you Jay!
12/22/2015 19:18
All of the mountains there are so beautiful and very unique. I wish I never had to leave!


Tim A

Thanks
01/05/2016 21:06
Thanks for the beta last month as I attempted this one in winter conditions. Ended up turning back a few miles up the 4WD road as the snow poured down during my time off to get out there.

Looks like you nailed all the LC 14ers in winter conditions in just a few days. Nicely done! Would you say you have a favorite for views or just pure aesthetics of a particular route? I’m planning on trying again in March for Unc and possibly RC/Sun, and saving Handies and Wetterhorn for their steeper snow routes in late May.


XterraRob

Was just luck
02/02/2016 00:02
Tim - For the weather, there hadn't been a significant amount of snowstorms yet but Wetterhorn/Uncompahgre had a lot of snow build up from wind. There wasn't any significant avalanche threat either so that was a great benefit to getting them in early. The 4WD roads up each one were kind of sketch. Uncompahgre had some hard packed snow that I was fortunate enough to drive on at night to get within a mile or so from the TH. Wetterhorn was the same deal.

Uncompahgre - Had amazing views
Wetterhorn - Had amazing views
RC/SS - Hands down my most favorite. Wetterhorn & Uncompahgre look so huge from Redcloud that is just blows you away. Pictures don't do it justice. I still remember looking at Wetterhorn just standing tall like a spire or a cathedral against the rest of the mountains. Uncompahgre just looks like a monster.

In the winter, the San Juans make you believe you're on a whole other world.


theketchupman
Awesome!
05/31/2016 16:16
Those pics are awesome, and everything I've hoped to get. I've attempted Uncompaghre twice in January, and failed twice. Both times I've had park at the bottom of the road and had to do the 4 mile hike from the road to the trail head. It probably wouldn't be a hard hike without a pack, but both times with a pack it's pretty rough. The first attempt made it to 12,000ft and got mild elevation sickness, second time we started late and camped at 3 miles on the road and got a full 1.5feet of snow overnight. We chickened out on the summit the next day and opted to go ice climb in lake city instead. hah!



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