Peak(s):  Crestone Needle  -  14,197 feet
Date Posted:  08/25/2019
Date Climbed:   08/25/2019
Author:  SpringsDuke
 #44 Crestone Needle   

#44 Crestone Needle

Started at 5:15 am. Later start than usual but the extra sleep was just needed. Drive to lower trailhead an started there. This is after passing 4wd trailhead and turning left following the old road to Crestone Needles standard route. Bridge is broke this year from last but still no problem.
On the old 4wd road first sight of Crestone Needle

Hauled the mountain bike up again and stashed it 6 miles up from lower trailhead.

The standard photo

Broken Hand Pass

Climbing up Broken Hand Pass

Looking down Broken Hand Pass

On top of Broken Hand Pass first sight of Crestone Needle South Face.

There are two parallel trails both leading to the East Gully. A lower and a higher. I didn't notice till on the way back but I did take the lower to the summit and the upper back down so that's how I noticed the two paths. Both get you there and back. Lower is probably easiest and safest.

Going to the easy gully

Getting closer to the first gully to enter, the east gully.

Looking up at the start of the east gully

Fun climbing. Tiring after hiking from lower trailhead but fun.

Looking down east gully

The dihedral is right below this photo. Up there is the cairn for the notch to go through after climbing over the dihedral.

Me looking directly down the dihedral. It has many lines to take. If you cant find one you can climb the east gully a little higher and look down at the dihedral to get a birds eye view. You should see something you like when looking down at it. I jumped down to that wet rock floor and then climbed up the other side both time I crossed it.

Looking back at the dihedral cross point.

Going up the west gully

Catching up to the rest of todays climbers at the top of the west gully

The ramp after the west gully. The class 4 variation east gully is directly below us to the right at this point.

Climbing up the final ramp. Good grip nothing loose.

Exit the ramp and see the summit.

Creston Peak from the summit. A team of 4 summited same time I did from the traverse. Looks like the had a blast!

Humbolt from the summit.

Going back down the ramp into the west gully.

Back over going down the east gully.

Getting back to Broken Hand Pass

Took a higher route this time to get back to Broken Hand Pass. A little harder I think.

Going back to Broken Hand Pass. Dirt trail to scrambling rock with the cairns on top you can see. I did not take this way on the way to the summit but eventually met back up with the trail from the morning and Broken Hand Pass.

Back down to my favorite part. Only took me 50 mins to ride down from 6 miles up beating last years time by over 10 minutes. I was flying. See ya!!
Time to summit was 4 1/2 hours much faster than last year as well! Total hike and bike time was 9 hours but I spent an hour on the summit and another hour or more taking breaks and basking in the sun on the way down. Gotta savior the moments. I've never taken so many portrait photos on a climb either I tend tp like landscape better but the view and portrait photos on this climb really stood out.

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

08/25/2019 18:33
My favorite 14...


08/26/2019 08:34
I bet that mountain bike looked really tempting to others coming down! That's practically entrapment!


09/13/2019 18:54
The mtb is a great idea. Where you able to ride up? Heading there this weekend

Going up
09/15/2019 20:51
Of the 6 miles up I was able to ride maybe .75 miles of it, more like half a mile I bet. Otherwise its walking the bike up which does not appear to slow me down so not as big a nuisance as it sounds in my experience.

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