Peak(s):  Mt. Sherman  -  14,036 feet
Date Posted:  04/08/2007
Date Climbed:   04/06/2007
Author:  NycICK

 Sherman - Fourmile Creek  

Now that I am fully intoxicated having consumed several black and tans, I feel that I am fully prepared to make my first trip report ever since I joined this site. And before I begin making this report, I think, just for context, I want everyone to understand that I am new to hiking 14ers. I‘ve only attempted a total of 6 of them and only made 2 summits. This is my second shot of Sherman, and my 3rd attempt in snow conditions. I‘m out of shape and live in Pueblo. In case you don‘t know, Pueblo is about the ugliest city in Colorado next to Trinidad, and it only sits at 4700ft, so you can imagine what the altitude does to me.

I decided Friday the 6th would be a good day to hike Mt Sherman, seeing how the weather was supposed to be good, the wind was going to be low, and I happened to be off that day. This is good because the last time I told my boss that I was blowing off work to hike 14er she got really mad. Don‘t worry. That old lady is nuts. I told her I didn‘t want to come in mostly because I didn‘t want to work, but I told her it would be cool. I said she could just go about her business a knit me up a nice sweater or something.... No, I‘m not kidding.

Anyway, I got to the trailhead at about 7 in the morning, right when I planned to. The road was completely snow free until about 11000ft. After that where was snow everywhere. My GPS said the exact point was about 11150ft. I was in my dad‘s 4Runner. I decided I would go ahead and be the crazy dude to try it, and push onward. Now I know what you‘re thinking. This is stupid. I know that. That‘s the point. I‘m the type that if I saw a sign not to jump into the Grand Canyon, I say start a base jumping club. So I kicked it in 4WD, and continued on the road. This worked for about 200 yards. I found myself moving sideways and putting my dad‘s truck in a nice wall of snow. It‘s ok though. Kick in the low range, lock up the rear differential, and next thing you know that thing will claw it‘s way out of anything. Which it did. Which is good. Which may explain why my dad has not killed me as yet.

Anyway, I back the truck out to a nice dry spot and gear up. I don my goretex jacket, my pack, my showshoes, my trekking poles, and all that other good stuff I wish I didn‘t need. Now remember I said I was out of shape? Well that comes into play now. And so my hike begins. Now as many of you know, if you start hiking at 11000 ft you‘re actually a good bit away from the trailhead. So I hike. And hike. And hike. And I get tired. It took me until after 9 to finally reach the gate at 12100 where the actual trailhead is. My god man. At this point most hikers would have at least hit the Hilltop mine site.

So I break for about 20 minutes. Catch my breath... Have a little something to eat... I hate trailmix bars... My water is too cold....

I get up to keep going and realize that my body is now more tired than it was before I sat down. This is complete bull. Oh well. Gotta keep going.

So we‘ll fast forward a bit, since nothing really eventful happens between the gate at 12600ft.

Well, I get past the first set of mines and get my bearings at 12600, only to realize the trail is gone. Snow drifts have obliterated it. A couple of other guys who had blazed past me (again, I am out of shape) started hiking up a steep snowbank with no problem for them not too far ahead of me. Well good for them... Me on the other hand had no chance of getting up that bastard. And even then I‘d only be up to the Hilltop mine area at about 13000. I‘d be dead. There‘d be no way I‘d hit the summit at that point.

Well, as Bill puts in so many route descriptions, it was decision time. I decided that given my current feeling of being two steps away from dead, and that I know that steep climb up on that snowbank ahead was too much for my fat gut that constantly jiggled to and fro, I decided to head back.

A bit disappointing. I wanted to make the summit. However, I started thinking to myself it wasn‘t that bad. Besides, I made what I think was the right decision. I knew my limit, and called it when I felt I had gotten there. I started thinking to myself, this is a really nice day. I thought I real nice snowshoe hike. It‘s great to be up here. I‘m having a really nice.... Ouch.

I slip and bust myself on a particularly loose peice of rock as I was coming down. I didn‘t see it in time. It was covered by snow and was just hidden. I sprained my ankle. Now at this point, I‘m about as upset as can be. I‘m tired. I‘m hurting. I‘m still a little ticked at my cold water. And now I‘m limping. I had no one to yell at to blame buy myself. But I chose to yell at the mountain. "Sherman, you bastard!! Wasn‘t getting to me to turn around enough??? What is this? You don‘t see me kicking you in the talus do you?" I mean I let this mountain know what‘s up. That was just unfair.

Well, after that 5 minutes of "I hate Mt Sherman", I continued down. The mountain must have chose not to do anything further to me after that. Not that it needed to. I was still more than a mile away from the 4Runner when my ankle got hurt. So it was a nice long showshoe of step, ouch, step, ouch, step, ouch, etc....

I finally rounded a curve on the road and saw once again the 4Runner. A Toyota never looked so good. I threw my gear into the truck and got out and onto the road.

And now time for my Jerry Springer‘s Final Thought.

So, this summer, when the road opens all the way to the gate, and the snow is mostly gone, I‘ll hike Sherman again. And hopefully, if the mountain chooses not to smite me, I‘ll make the summit. And in order to show my respect to the mountain that has now managed to throw me off it‘s slopes twice in the same season.... When I make the summit this summer, I‘m going to open up three Newcastle Brown Ales up there. One for me, and two that I‘ll pour out onto the summit. I figure Sherman earned them, the rat bastard.


 Comments or Questions

love it
04/16/2007 21:48


04/29/2007 05:27
weak maybe you should start with sit and be fit

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