Peak(s):  Mt. Wilson  -  14,246 feet
Date Posted:  08/05/2010
Date Climbed:   08/01/2010
Author:  Eaglevu
 Mt Wilson - North Slope via Navajo Lake  

My goal, with the help of other'ers, was to climb Mt Wilson and Wilson Peak, on separate days. I left Denver Friday morning, for the Navajo Lake TH, where I was to meet up with Pete5 and pack-in to the lake. Due to mudslides on Hwy-145, near Placerville, we missed connecting. My cell carrier, whom I will not mention, but whose initials are AT&T, does not service the area! I waited at Ridgeway until things dried up, and returned to the TH to car-camp. according to the thuroughly soaked TH register, Pete succeeded in summiting Wilson Peak on Friday. Saturday morning, I packed-in to Navajo Lake (~5 mi.) and set my tent up, in warm, muggy weather. I then waited for the others, in my tent, while sitting out the afternoon rain. They apparently bailed on me. I met up with MtnHigh, later that day, as he told me about his attempt up El Diente's North Butress. We met Denny and Sally, who would join me and two others up Mt Wilson, on Sunday. I started up the trail at 5:15AM, under partly cloudy, moonlit skies, and reached the base of the slope at 7:00. No one else was in sight. Around 8:30, I got to the halfway point on the slope, when the four others caught up to me. Good timing. I needed help with route finding from this point forward. The rocks were fairly dry, and as stable as expected for this mountain. Mark had a print out of the website route photos. We could see the fog roll in around the top of the mountain. So, things started looking iffy. We reached the notch on the ridge a little after 10:00, and found ourselves in the thick fog, with about 30 feet of visibility. Since I could not see what was now below me, on either side of the ridge, my fear of the deep started creeping up in me . After talking over the final phase of the ascent, the "crux", we dropped our packs and proceeded on. I followed last. We made it, shooked hands and snapped each others photos, and immediately went back down. The rain remained at bay all the way back down. As I turtled my way back to the lake, I stopped at Denny & Sally's camp, where they just discovered that a marmot had raided their tent and chewed up their gear. I ran back to my tent, with fear of the same, only to see it untouched. As soon as I crawled into, around 1:00, the rain finally started. It then, kept coming and going, for the remainder of my stay into Monday morning. It stopped long enough for me to pack my dry clothes and wet tent, and then let me really have it on the hike back to the TH. I and everything on me was soaked. I did see the sun, finally, at times, during my two day, post-climb excursion of the central San Juans, my gear never had a chance to dry out. If you are going in the next few days or week, do take waterproof boots and gaiters.

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