Peak(s):  Blanca Peak  -  14,345 feet
Date Posted:  08/12/2009
Date Climbed:   08/08/2009
Author:  14er_Wiener

 Blanca Peak - Northwest Ridge a dog‘s eye view  

This is my first trip report! People on the trail keep asking my dad if I really hiked or if I was carried. HA! Well, I‘m happy to report that I climbed another one just the other day.

To be honest, I do get a boost every once in a while on a Class 2+, but I‘ve made it up every time despite my 3" inseam. Actually, this was 14er Number 28 for me and Number 26 for Jessie, my girlfriend. Dad and I were going to try Ellingwood, but Jessie needed to go back down, so we‘re saving it for another day.

The trail was rough-I really didn‘t see it coming (maybe because I‘m so little?). On August 7th, Mom, Dad (owners), Jessie and I hiked to Lake Como.

I was lucky! Being the smallest, I didn‘t have to carry a pack. Lake Como Road was not pack-friendly at all! But I did wear a good amount off my pads running around keeping guard over the group. There were viscious squirrels and marmots everywhere!
And if you like signs and well-marked trails, try another mountain! This was one of the few signs up there, and above treeline all the cairns seem to criss-cross as you go.

The scree was not a problem for me, but if you‘re a big dog like Jessie, you wouldn‘t like it. Easier paths with smaller boulders were in short supply.

Here is a picture of me nearing the summit. Dad told the group I was a "domesticated marmott." I am a long-haired, Miniature Dachshund named Conan, by the way, and my low center of gravity works pretty good!

This is a picture of Dad and I at the summit. The wind blew hard the whole weekend-everywhere, except at the summit. Go figure!

Jessie tore a pad just as we summited, and Mom kept an eye on her at the summit ridge. "Thank you" to the guy with the huge medical kit (for all the tape)! We had to make it a slow hike down.

The ridge above Crater Lake had a neat waterfall with icicles. Great for a drink on the way downhill.

We were visited by a Bighorn Sheep as we packed up to head down from Como. He hung around for the last half hour while we packed and headed out. He had some personal space issues- he was only 30 yards away at one point.

This is one rough road to hike. My dad is dreaming of a Jeep Rubicon for when we come back for Little Bear and Ellingwood. I have a feeling we're doing it the old fashioned way, though.

Overall, I give this hike 3 out of 4 paws. The views are great at the end and the lakes were awesome (great for cooling your feet), but the box canyon didn't give up its view until the summit ridge. Big dogs might not like the summit - just ask Jessie. The road was not kind to people; 4WD enthusiasts must roll rocks onto the road and mudjack the boulders higher to keep it interesting. That's my theory and I'm sticking to it.

Conan, out!

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

 Comments or Questions

08/14/2009 12:49
This is great. Thanks for the laughs.


Good to see you up there
08/15/2009 03:58
It was great meeting you up on top and you story about the dog. Apparently, the 6 of us that were up there with you lost our video camera coming down to Lake Como. If you noticed it anywhere, please let me know.


08/16/2009 20:34
Sorry about the video camera - we stuck closely to the trail coming down and didn‘t see one. Enjoyed the short time we spent on top. Eagle Scouts rock.

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