Peak(s):  Raspberry Mountain B - 10,605 feet
Date Posted:  05/20/2008
Modified:  08/24/2011
Date Climbed:   05/18/2008
Author:  Floyd

 Proud Dad on Raspberry Mountain  

Raspberry Mountain B, Elev.10,605 ft. State Rank: 1,979
Upper Fourmile TH
5.6 Miles RT, 1,200 ft gain

I had originally wanted to take the family up to Lake Isabelle but after hearing about the 3 feet of snow on the trail, I opted for something a little dryer. Raspberry has been on my winter list for some time, but now I'm saving the close, low elevation hikes to do with my daughter.

We pulled into the empty trailhead at 9:30 a.m. and started to get everyone situated. During the drive, my daughter decided to pour her water bottle down her front, so my wife, Jamie, always the prepared Mommy, pulled out her spare set of clothes for the little one. Much to Jamie's chagrin, she couldn't wear her hiking outfit she had picked out for her but; instead, it was long underwear and a "Too Cute 4 Timeout" t-shirt for the day. After the clothes and diaper change, we headed up the trail at our alpine start time of 10:00 am.

It's no fun going from a car seat straight to a backpack, so we let her hike the first portion of the trail. She had a lot of fun with my hiking poles as we made our way up the switchbacks to the trees. But, once in the trees, she was enamored by her new favorite thing in this world – pine cones. She collected a few dozen for Daddy to hold and it soon became her next word (PI-CO).

I was extremely proud of her as she hiked a good ˝ mile and a little more than 100 feet up on her own before we put her in the pack – not too shabby for a 17-month old. She still had some gas in the tank, but we wanted to get her in the pack before we had a cranky kid on our hands. Once in, as long as I have a pocket full of goldfish and animal crackers and she has a view of the dogs, she's as content as can be back there. The trail is a gentle walk through pine forests passing the occasional old home site and a few nice potential camping spots. (In case, a reader is looking for a good place just to get away) Once we got to roughly 10,000 feet, the dogs enjoyed playing in the sporadic snow fields and our daughter got a kick out watching them roll in the snow as I heard screams for "MORE!" come from over my shoulder.

I had read trip reports about people losing the trail, but there is an obvious main route with several smaller trails that branch off in every direction (in their defense, it may not be so obvious covered in snow). The description on summitpost does a good job getting you where you need to go though. Once on a large flat area, I began to wonder if we had missed a turn because we started about a 100-foot descent. Here, a break in the trees gave us a glimpse of Raspberry's rocky summit only about ˝ mile away.

We made our way up the final pitch, a relatively steep, couple hundred foot incline, and found ourselves at the base of the summit rocks. The route description mentioned staying to climber's left to gain the summit. We thought that meant to the left of the rocks immediately in front of us and quickly found ourselves making some Class III moves. I took great care with the kiddo on my back but then looked up at a huge block that was every bit of Class IV.

We decided to retreat to a sunny spot at the base of the rocks out of the wind to sit and enjoy lunch. Our daughter tore into the trail mix and I thought she loved the stuff until I realized she was just picking out the M&Ms. (She's definitely her Mother's (and her Grandmother's) kid – the girl will do anything for chocolate). We subbed out the M&Ms and by trial and error found her favorite flavor of bar that doesn't involve chocolate: Apple Cinnamon Power Bar-Harvest Bar.

After lunch, Jamie took the dogs and our daughter down to a snow patch while I got to get some scrambling practice in before my 14er season starts. As I played around on the rocks – and figured out a way to get over that Class IV rock – I found the true summit was only 50 feet away and by "climber's left" the route referred to bushwhacking through some trees skirting the base of the rocks and the summit push is really only a few easy class 2 steps. I hurried back to get the family and showed them the way up. The summit views were amazing - from Pikes' Crags, the northern Sangres and southern Sawatch in full winter coat, the Tenmile-Mosquito peaks, and McCurdy Mountain and Bison Peak of the Lost Creek Wilderness just on the other side of the valley. We looked down on the town of Divide and enjoyed the afternoon sun and nice cool breeze as we took a few pictures and let our daughter take in her first summit!

After a quick diaper change, she was back in the pack and we headed down. The trip back was uneventful but, I had to pull out the big ammunition to keep her happy – a DumDum lollipop. We got back to the spot where we first put her in the pack and let her walk the rest of the way back to the car. Jamie told her that she got another sucker if she made it all the way back to the car so she tore off running. A few face-plants later, (her mind gets her going a little faster than her little legs will carry her) she got her goal and was laughing hysterically as Jamie got her packed up. I got the dogs situated in the back and we headed for home.

We had perfect weather and didn't see anyone on the trail all day. Raspberry was very enjoyable and would make for a great snowshoe someday. Once we got home, I had to get our daughter's new inflatable pool ready for her play-date the next day. The air compressor didn't work so I had the pleasure of personally inflating the pool, waterslide, and giraffe that spits out water (someone needs to explain to me the connection). So, I went to bed feeling like I had been at 14,000 feet – tired legs from lugging a 27-pound kid up a mountain and a headache from oxygen-deprivation.

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

 Comments or Questions

08/28/2008 00:37
What a fun family outing you had! Thanks for sharing!


Awesome - Get them out young
05/20/2008 14:34
Looked like a fun day with the little-one and the pooches. Thanks for the TR.


Great trip Report
08/24/2011 21:35
Congrats to her on her first summit. Maybe a 14er for her next summer?


05/20/2008 18:31
Awesome trip report, looks like a great time!

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