Peak(s):  Wetterhorn Peak  -  14,015 feet
Uncompahgre Peak  -  14,309 feet
Sunshine Peak  -  14,001 feet
Redcloud Peak  -  14,034 feet
Matterhorn Pk  -  13,590 feet
Date Posted:  06/26/2008
Date Climbed:   06/23/2008
Author:  redneb

 San Juan  

Monday - Redcloud/Sunshine
Tuesday - Wetterhorn/Camp
Wednesday - Uncompahgre/Matterhorn

Plenty of snow left in the San Juans. Wetterhorn and Matterhorn definitely the most fun of the 5. Snowshoes nor crampons were needed but gators were useful for a few postholing snowfields. Skis or a snowboard would have been a plus. Although snow was unavoidable, it was packed and trails were in fair shape. Nellie Creek road was closed so we parked at Matterhorn Creek trailhead, which was accessable by a 2WD low clearance. Matterhorn Peak is definitely worth the 45 minute scramble and 10 minute descent - on the way back from Uncomp. - it lies right between Uncomp. Peak and Wetterhorn Peak - Don't miss it.

Some unlucky critter is wearing a face full of quills missing from this fellas backside

Early morning approach to Redcloud

Almost to Redcloud. Uncomp in background

A simple traverse from Redcloud to Sunshine with a fun glissade and screescramble down - Is Sunshine still a 14er if the Rockies are sinking?

Sunshine Peak

Camp 1 at the Wetterhorn/Uncompahgre trail junction. Wetterhorn in background

Curious little critters - Even came up and bit my pants

About half way to Wetterhorn. Uncomp/Matterhorn in Background

The last cornice before the scramble

Some loose rock but easy class 3. Oops no helmet - but care was taken obviously, hence the sunglasses protecting the soft cranium

Wetterhorn Peak. Matt/Uncomp in background

My little mtn goat

We spontaneously left from the Wetterhorn junction at 330 pm because of a break in the weather. Praise God the storms stayed high and we sat in a 3 hour window of blue surrounded by Hmmmm? What a beautiful creation!

Descending Wett. with Uncomp/Matt in background

Dawn on Wed. - the long soupy walk to Uncompahgre. Look at that Ridge scramble from Wetterhorn to Matterhorn - looks fun eh? I wish I weren't such a pansy =-) We took the long way but I sure hope to see someone post there acrobatics on this thing soon

Uncompahgre Peak

Ah freedom from the harsh winter

The Columbine are out

As well as the bears

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

 Comments or Questions

02/05/2011 00:22
That last photo of the two bears and elk (?) is very cool. Were you in a car? How‘d you get that shot? They look like cubs -- any sign of mama bear?


holy s**t
06/26/2008 20:22
a porcupine, 5 summits, a couple marmots, two bears and a dead elk, thats unreal. I, too would be interested to hear if you took that shot from your car and if mama bear was lurking.

Phenomenal report too with great shots.


11/30/2010 17:28
Two cubs feasting on a cow elk - I'm sure the mamma bear wasn't far off! Classic shot.


nice report!
06/26/2008 21:05
Great trip report, and some awesome shots. I was wondering what snow conditions were like on uncompahgre? pretty melted out?

Mel McKinney

06/26/2008 21:33
One of the best shots I‘ve seen on the site. Please share with us if it was from a car. Hopefully it was. I would have been too scared to walk up! Great trip report.


Nice Work!
06/26/2008 22:44
Sweet pics man, bursting with quality beta. Looks like a great trip.


Great job!!!
01/19/2011 03:38
It‘s gonna be hard to head to the Sawatch this weekend...
That‘s one of the best day/reports of the year!


Very Cool!
06/26/2008 23:48
A great TR. One of the best I‘ve read. I am planning Uncomp/Wett later this summer. Can you come along and do my photography? Great pics.

Thanks for sharing the adventure!


Oh, Crud!
06/27/2008 00:22
If I ever come upon two cubs feasting on an elk carcass, you‘ll see nothing but traildust while I‘m getting the hell out of there! Excellent report, excellent pics. Looks like it was a memorable road trip.


I know that porcupine!!!(It wasn‘t an animal
06/27/2008 02:44
So if I‘m correct which I think I am I tangled with this porcupine a few weeks ago right in between redcloud sunshine and handies. I climbed redcloud and sunshine on a saturday then decided to sleep in my car instead of a tent. I woke up at midnight(2 hours after going to sleep) with a terrible scratching sound on the outside of my car. I banged on my car from the inside and it would stop for a couple seconds. THen start up again. Finally I honked the horn and drove around for a minute then went back to sleep(this time in the driver seat). An hour later again there it was a terrible scratching sound(this time I was ready). I sat up, turned on the car and through it into reverse hit the animal and went forward spun in a circle and turned on my headlights. There it was a large porcupine running away(as fast as porcupines run... not fast). It left a large clump of quills right there in the parking lot on the redcloud sunshine side. I‘m pretty sure this is the same porcupine. I don‘t like to hurt animals but 2 hours of sleep is just not enough(and I knew I wasn‘t going to hurt it because of how low my car sits). The really funny part is this happened to a guy the night before in the same lot. It was chewing on the muffler of our cars two nights in a row.


One of the Coolest
06/27/2008 04:03
Great report with some awesome photos. The San Juans are some beautiful mountains. Great job!


06/29/2008 14:10
Really enjoyed the photos. Can‘t wait to visit CO for the first time. Driving from NH is 2 weeks!


06/29/2008 15:39
sweet report! love the shots... so how many days where you out there??


06/29/2008 20:47
that‘s a rad trip report. Thanks for sharing - can‘t wait to get out into the San Juan area myself!


06/29/2008 21:47
Hey congrats looks like a great time... I look forward to doing these. great pics a little more detail would be helpful later

top pin

06/30/2008 12:39
Best photos I‘ve seen on this site! But - where are the photos of the ”CHITLINS AND HAMHOCKS” cooking over an open fire?

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