Peak(s):  Mt. Eolus  -  14,083 feet
Sunlight Peak  -  14,059 feet
Windom Peak  -  14,082 feet
Date Posted:  06/28/2010
Date Climbed:   06/25/2010
Author:  tallyadventuristo

 San Juan Mountains Climb  

We took the Durango/Silverton train on Wednesday, June 23rd. The roughly 6-mile hike to camp was tougher than I thought (due in part to living in Florida all my life and having too much gear). We brought full crampons and axes but after setting up camp weren't sure we'd need either.

Thursday morning we headed for Twin Lakes somewhere around 5am. We refilled our water there and met a Boyscout group from Kansas City I think. They were heading for Windom while we went for Sunlight first. We noticed snow in the bowl/saddle between the two and were happy that we brought our gear just in case. the snow as packed pretty well and crampons were not necessary. We reached the summit of Sunlight by 9am and it was beautiful. Winds were calm, temperature was mild and visibility was great. We descended and went for Windom. Snow on the saddle presented a minor challenge but with the aid of an axe was overcome. My partner used his crampons just to get practice in. Windom was an easier/less technical climb. We reached the summit by noon. Conditions were sunny but windy.

We considered going for Eolus the same day but clouds were forming when we reached Twin Lakes around 2pm. The next day we left camp at 3am with two new friends (Holland and Paul). The axe came in handy again on the lower parts of Eolus. The catwalk was just as crazy and fun as any youtube video i've seen. Finding the final route to the summit past the Catwalk took patience. I found it to be the most challenging physically and mentally. We reached the summit by 9am and descended so that we could catch the train out that day.

If you are going soon, the weather has been very mild. The snow is there but not overwhelmingly so. One of our new friends did all his climbing in sandals with no axe or poles. Hang up all your stuff so the marmots and goats dont eat it.

This was the best trip I've ever taken. I met some really cool people hiking and on the train. I highly recommend this adventure. More pictures to follow..

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):

 Comments or Questions

Great Preview
07/01/2010 14:19
Thanks for the post. Sounds like a great trip and interesting climbs. Our group (Michigan FlatLanders)will be making the Chicago Basin hike-in next Monday (7/5)and climbing several of the area peaks the next few days. Thanks for the preview; helps us to anticipate what it will be like. Sounds great!

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