Peak(s):  Kit Carson Peak  -  14,165 feet
Date Posted:  05/30/2010
Date Climbed:   05/30/2010
Author:  schrund
 Kit Carson Annual Too-Early Attempt  

I spent yesterday and today attempting Kit Carson. I didn't make the summit but have a few photos of the conditions. I hiked in to Willow Lake, spent the night, then attempted the couloir between Challenger and Kit Carson. The snow starts more-or-less at the upper stream crossing on the approach. I carried snowshoes but I didn't see anyone else carrying/using them. A few hardy souls did the entire Challenger slog yesterday (btw- if you dropped a Mountain Hardwear hat on your decent, I picked it up). Here's the view across Willow Lake: Image
View Across the Lake
Here's the view of the colouir that stopped me: Image
From Top of Falls Looking up at Kit Carson
Here's upper Willow Creek Basin: Image
Upper Wilow Creek Basin
here's another view of Kit Carson and the coulouir: Image
From Top of Falls Looking up at Kit Carson
And here's a lovely parting shot while leaving Crestone: Image
The View from Outside Crestone
I carried Kathoola's and a Raven Ultralight axe, when I got in that coulouir though I wished I had a full sized axe and real crampons. I'm not entirely sure I would have continued anyway though, the thought of decending that crusty colouir didn't seem appetizing. Note to self- next year, wait till later in the season!

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

 Comments or Questions

Nice Pics
06/04/2010 05:23
Is it doable to stay to the right of the coulouir and get up to Challenger and then over to Carson via the standard route? Any advise you could give? Thinking of doing both this week. Thanks!


Absolutely, yes
06/04/2010 14:16
Absolutely it is doable to summit Challenger and then go for Kit Carosn, in fact that is what I probably should have done. I was trying to avoid having to summit both Challenger and then Kit Carson, but in retrospect that would have been easier than what I was trying to do. There were three folks that went up Challenger in a day from the trailhead and they didn‘t have crampons or snow shoes. They didn‘t make the summit of Kit Carson though, they commented to me that they would have wanted crampons and an axe to do the traverse around Kit Carson Avenue. Good luck!


06/04/2010 18:10
Awesome thanks for letting us know. Will def bring our crampons an axe for sure then. Thanks for getting back before we left. Have a good one. Will let you know how it went, hehe.


jth221 how was it ?
06/25/2010 02:54
Dude did you attempt the peak?

How are the conditions esp Kit Carson Avenue ?


Didn‘t Get to Kit Carson Avenue
06/25/2010 04:07
I didn‘t make it to Kit Carson Avenue, but I spoke to 2 people who got there the day prior and they said with crampons and axes they would have been fine~

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