Peak(s):  Grizzly Pk B  -  13,738 feet
San Miguel Pk  -  13,752 feet
Date Posted:  09/02/2020
Date Climbed:   08/14/2020
Author:  Mtnman200
Additional Members:   RandyMack
 Simplicity Is Beautiful   

Thursday, Aug. 13, 2020. The Lake City portion of our trip couldn't have gone any better. After sleeping in late and spending some time hanging out in Silverton, we drove 22 miles south of Silverton and then 15.3 miles past Purgatory ski area to the end of Forest Road 579, where we set up camp and cooked dinner. Tomorrow's goal: Grizzly Peak B (13,738')

Friday, Aug. 14, 2020. We headed northwest a short distance to the Colorado Trail and followed it to about 11,300', where an informal trail begins climbing east and then north. After about a mile, we left the informal trail and headed northwest, eventually climbing into the basin south of Grizzly Peak B.

The summit of Grizzly Peak B is hidden from view until after ascending the couloir that leads to the low point in the center of the photo

The top of the couloir is getting closer

The view from the top of the couloir; the true summit of Grizzly Peak B is the high point in the center of the photo

Looking back at the top of the couloir

We climbed to the false summit east of Grizzly Peak B's summit and then followed the ridge west to the true summit. Someone had thrown the summit register canister down the steep north side of Grizzly Peak B.

The view fromthe summit of Grizzly Peak B

Looking south as we approached the top of the couloir at the center of the photo

Looking down the couloir that allows access to the summit of Grizzly Peak B

Looking back toward Grizzly Peak B as we descended

Another look back toward Grizzly Peak B from a bit lower

After returning to the trailhead, we drove through Silverton and west on the South Mineral Creek road to near its end. Along the way, we followed a slow-moving pickup truck towing a popup camper that repeatedly bounced off the ground. Eventually, the driver pulled over and let us go by. We set up camp partway up a hill near the start of the Rico-Silverton trail.

Tomorrow's goal: San Miguel Peak (13,752'). Normally, this peak is climbed from the west, but that would have meant a long drive toward Telluride.

Saturday, Aug. 15, 2020. We broke camp and drove about 1/2 mile to the Lake Hope trailhead near the Bandora Mine. A couple of miles of hiking brought us to the 12,445' saddle between V9 (13,260') and V8 (13,300'). We then descended on the trail to the eastern end of Lake Hope,

The Lake Hope trail

The water level in Lake Hope was down quite a bit, so we left the trail and walked along the eastern side of Lake Hope toward the dam at the north end of the lake. Near the dam we had to climb a bit to bypass a section that was too steep to contour across.

Lake Hope and its dam

The Lake Hope spillway is in poor condition

The Lake Hope dam is partially constructed out of wood

The water level in Lake Hope is so low that the water doesn't even reach the dam

After crossing the dam, we climbed west to reach San Miguel Peak's northeast ridge.

Climbing the grassy/rocky slopes shortly after crossing Lake Hope's dam

This is a false summit. We were taking a break near here when WildWanderer passed by on her way down from the summit

San Miguel Peak's rocky northeast ridge

A gash in San Miguel's ridge keeps this from being an easy ridge walk to the summit

We dropped below the ridge on its north side to bypass the gash

The view from the summit of San Miguel Peak

After lunch on the summit, we descended to Hope Lake. This time, we contoured around its east side to the trail, which we then followed back to the trailhead. We drove to Ouray and checked into the Historic Western Hotel before having pizza for dinner.

Sunday, August 16, 2020. Today was a much-needed and well-deserved rest day. Shortly after noon, we drove toward Yankee Boy Basin and were able to get one of the last vacant campsites at Thistledown Campground. Our goal over the next few days was to climb all five thirteeners near Yankee Boy Basin that Randy hadn't yet climbed.

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