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Mount Bierstadt Climber's Log

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Matt MahoneyRoute Climbed: Evans/Sawtooth Date Climbed: Aug. 3 2002  Sucess!

Matt Mahoney

Traversed the Sawtooth from the Evans summit and back with David, Cyndie, and Joseph. David and Cyndie were moving slowly, so they descended to Guanilla Pass while Joseph and I returned to the car on Evans (2 hours) and drove 50 miles to Guanilla (1:30) just in time to meet them. I wore sandals, which worked fine even though it rained for the return traverse.
Posted Aug 3, 2002 9:20 pm

charles97Route Climbed: Guanella Pass to Bierstadt to Evans Date Climbed: June 21, 2002  Sucess!

charles97

"One of the easiest fourteeners," my book says. Just goes to show you that you shouldn't believe everything you read. Of course I take a little credit for making this hike a lot harder than it should have been. My ascent started normally from Guanella Pass at 7 am. The hike to Bierstadt summit was easy and uneventful, especially with the new boardwalks strategically placed in the infamous Willows. One note is that smoke from the Hayman fire made the sky hazy and the air taste burnt. Made summit at 9:30 am.



Then, things started to go down hill -- literally. I traversed the Sawtooth ridge toward Evans. The class 3 ridge takes quite a bit out of you, but I have to believe that going this direction is a lot easier than the other way around since you are climbing up the steepest parts of the ridge. There were a couple of scary spots, but nothing to worry too much about. The long trek from just past the Sawtooth toward Evans is a killer though. Long and demoralizing. On top of that, the weather started to turn windy and cold.



Made summit of Evans by 13:20. By then, the wind is really howling, and I had to put on all my cold weather gear. It was disheartening to see all those energetic tourists driving around the peak in their shiny SUVs, and even more tempting to hitch a ride down with one of them! Had I not come from Bierstadt, I probably would have tried.



Hiking back, I decided not to tackle the Sawtooth again. Instead, I went straight after the saddle and took an alternate route down and across the Willows. Mistake! The Willows sucks all energy out of you. In places, the plants were taller than me and so thick, I had to raise my arms and force my way through using my body. Millions of aphids flying around, I probably inhaled at least 20. The marsh beneath my feet was soggy and soaked my shoes, not to mention made me weary of quicksand. I had to use the branches of the willows that I displaced as "stepping stones" to keep from sinking. Took me about 2 hours to get out of the Willows. Fortunately, I can see the top of Guanella Pass most of the time. Otherwise I would have gotten lost for sure.



So take my advice, if you decide to do what I did, go back on the Sawtooth. It may be steep, but it'll save you a lot of time and trouble in the long run!



#3 of 6 fourteeners in 4 days of hiking.
Posted Jul 15, 2002 4:10 pm

mr_gRoute Climbed: Sawtooth Ridge Date Climbed: May 11, 2002  Sucess!

mr_g

Started from Summit Lake and ascended to Mt. Spaulding. From there, we traversed to the Sawtooth Ridge starting point. Traversed the Sawtooth and summitted Bierstadt for the second time.
Posted Jun 24, 2002 12:49 pm

wayneaflickRoute Climbed: Guanella Pass Date Climbed: June 22, 2002  Sucess!

wayneaflick

Troy, Patrick and I climbed this peak together. It's my second time climbing Biersadt. We were glad to see the bridges over the willows, that sure makes crossing the "willows" easer with less erosion. Thanks. Also the realingment of the trail is great. The old route wasn't good, too steep which allowed for lots of erosion. The new route adds distance but is much better for the environment. We counted over 100 people who passed us (I'm very slow). Most of these were great. A few had dogs which were mostly well behaved but there was only one on a leash. That's against the law. Patrick got a $50 fine when he got a ticket from a Game Warden who was at the top of Mt. Massive when we got up there. Also, there were two climbers, a guy in a yellow t-shire and his girl friend who were trying to catch friends coming down the mountain. The problem was they were off trail on the tundra all the way. The girl got back on the trail but the guy didn't. That's poor trail etiquette. Saw a herd of goats but they were far away. Troy summited at 11:15, Patrick at 11:45, and I summited at 12:10. I said I was slow.
Posted Jun 23, 2002 9:21 am

wayneaflickRoute Climbed: Guanella Pass Date Climbed: August 15, 1995  Sucess!

wayneaflick

My beautiful wife Carol climbed with me. We got a late start and the willows were their normal quagmire. There were many people on the trail as usual and the normal number of mountain goats. We could have petted a kid but thought better of it. Even with our late start we summited before noon. The weather was great. It's a much easer climb now that they have bridged the muckie willows. They did a great job.
Posted Jun 18, 2002 10:59 am

ctruscotRoute Climbed: trail from Guanella Pass Date Climbed: July 1998  Sucess!
Lots of mud and willows. Touched the top and ran - lightining and hail before noon.
Posted May 31, 2002 3:47 pm

phomchickRoute Climbed: Guanilla Pass Date Climbed: April 14, 2002  Sucess!

phomchick

As a climber from California I noticed things are different in Colorado. The first difference is: NO PERMITS REQUIRED. The second is that there are a lot of roads, and they go high. My climb from the pass started at 7:40 a.m., and took three hours to cover the three miles from the car and about 2,800' of elevation gain. A nice, civilized pace :-). The weather was clear, the winds were dead calm, the temperature was about 45 degrees, and the view was fantastic. I could see east over the plains and west across the broad valley of Rocky Mountain National Park to the mountain ranges beyond. To the north and south, there were mountains, mountains everywhere. We were the first to the summit that day, which since we started from the parking lot first, was gratifying. After about 20 minutes at the top we started down. We met about 15 other climbers below us as we descended, and three mountaineering dogs, which sort of put things in perspective. The uphill slog back through the now sloppy mud, slush and willows was dreadful and it was with a great deal of relief that I finally reached the car at 1:00 p.m.
Posted May 19, 2002 3:29 pm

Matt MahoneyRoute Climbed: Guanilla Pass Date Climbed: June 22 2000  Sucess!

Matt Mahoney

I just arrived from Florida (17 ft) the day before, so I started getting an altitude headache on the summit and had to abandon the Sawtooth to Evans. Back at the car I felt a bit drunk (although I had no alcohol) which I recognized as the onset of cerebral edema, but I recovered quickly once I descended further.



I climbed Bierstadt once before from Evans when I was better acclimated, making a big circle around the Sawtooth, up the north ridge and down the south, past Abyss Lake and up class 3 boulders back to Evans. A hard but fun hike.
Posted May 19, 2002 3:17 pm

darinchadwickRoute Climbed: Sawtooth Ridge Date Climbed: August 1996  Sucess!

darinchadwick

The sawtooth ridge was fun, and, I though exciting for 3rd class. This was before I did Kelso Ridge on Torreys peak, and the incredible ridge on Quandary peak. Still Bierstadt is a fun climb, and interesting enough that you need to pay attention.
Posted Apr 2, 2002 6:36 am

jwclimbsRoute Climbed: South Ridge via Guanella Pass Trailhead Date Climbed: 9.30.00  Sucess!

jwclimbs

Damn them evil willows on the descent!

We attempted to go on to Evans by way of the spectacular Sawtooth Ridge, but got bogged down by Evans many false summits and threatening sky's.

The Sawtooth was AWESOME though!!
Posted Jan 29, 2002 6:17 pm

ZekeRoute Climbed: Standard and Ridge Date Climbed: Several  Sucess!

Zeke

Have done this peak many times from all directions.

Highly recomend the Sawtooth ridge climb while your up there and the S. Ridge climg too.

check out Roaches 14er book for a great round trip from Evans.
Posted Jan 16, 2002 7:56 am

naderRoute Climbed: Guanella Pass Date Climbed: August 1999  Sucess!

nader

Nice Quiet Climb
Posted Dec 26, 2001 4:03 pm

huronitoRoute Climbed: Sawtooth Date Climbed: August 1999  Sucess!
Cold blustery day. Summit had intermittant sleet. Summit boulders much like Democrat Ridge. Sawtooth was enjoyable with some exposure. Climbed from Evans and threaded through mountain goats and sheep on return. Guanella side looked like a golf course.
Posted Nov 15, 2001 8:04 am

xskier77Route Climbed: Guanella Pass Date Climbed: September 2, 2001  Sucess!

xskier77

Very very crowded being a Sunday and all. Second 14er on my list and was pretty easy. Was able to get from the top to the bottom in less than 2 hours.
Posted Nov 13, 2001 12:55 am

steelemanRoute Climbed: Guanella Pass Date Climbed: August 1995  Sucess!

steeleman

Very easy climb, best done as a "while I'm in the neighborhood" peak. Avoid the dreaded willows
Posted Oct 28, 2001 5:17 pm

odysseusRoute Climbed: Guanella Pass Date Climbed: 8/17/2001  Sucess!

odysseus

This was the 5th fourteener that my partner and I hiked in 5 days. I was amazed at the number and variety of people making the climb! Beautiful weather and an easy hike to the summit. Well engineered bridges over the tough spots in the Willows!
Posted Oct 9, 2001 5:56 pm

SwenGollyRoute Climbed: Guanella Pass Date Climbed: 8-29-01  Sucess!
This flatlander Hoosier joins his Colorado College student son for the second year in a row in hiking a 14er (my second), this time joined by my 53-year-old sister (her first 14er). Gorgeous day, great views and interesting hikers, ranging from a quartet of 60-something women to a young family with a 3-year-old and 4-year-old. A relatively easy climb, though I'd recommend those from Indiana try the acclimation thing a little more than the 14 hours we did. For the son and I, it was the first of an unusual double -- we did Massive the next day.
Posted Sep 3, 2001 8:09 pm

Peter EliassenRoute Climbed: Guanella Pass Date Climbed: 9/1/96  Sucess!

Peter Eliassen

Easy from Guanella, although if hiking with Evans, watch out that you don't get off trail on the way back to Guanella...climb over Bierstadt again if possible.
Posted Aug 16, 2001 11:40 am

miztflipRoute Climbed: Sawtooth with Evans Date Climbed: July 1999  Sucess!

miztflip

The sawtooth provided a scenic route to Mt. Evans from Mt. Bierstadt. I saw my first Bighorn besides the ones on the interstate at Georgetown.
Posted Aug 13, 2001 3:04 pm

mwalker2Route Climbed: South Ridge via Scott Gomer Trail Date Climbed: 7/29/01  Sucess!

mwalker2

A great alternative to the usual route! Didn't see a soul, until I intersected the crowd just before the summit. Must have been 40 people on the top - and the weather was spectacular. About an 8 1/2 hour round trip hike from the Scott Gomer trailhead. A little bit of everything scenary wise - beaver dams a plenty, cool woods, and an easy 3.5 mile prologue to the main climb. Recommended.
Posted Jul 29, 2001 11:21 am

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