I will describe the moderate snow climb on Jasper’s northeast slope route. Start at the Forth of July Trailhead (10,500 ft.) and follow the obvious Arapaho Trail about a mile to the Diamond Lake turn-off, it is signed. Along this section you can preview your route up to the small basin under Jasper’s northeast face. Try to locate a steep rocky ramp that ascends between point 12,047 on Jasper’s northeast ridge and point 12,307 on Jasper’s east ridge. Locating this ramp is key. Descend the Diamond Lake Trail for about a half- mile to Middle Boulder Creek and cross it. At this point you are on your own with only faint game trails going forward. Angle southwest through the trees and head up slope towards the rocky ramp you located earlier from the Arapaho Pass Trail. I found the going a bit easier and less tedious on the far right side directly below the rock wall of point 12,047. Manage your way up through the huge boulders and you will soon arrive in the beautiful basin (11,500 ft.) under Jasper’s northeast face.
Hike around the lakes south side (left side) and start an ascent of Jasper’s east ridge. The snow angle is moderate here. Once you reach the saddle between point 12,307 on the east ridge and Jasper’s 500 ft. summit ridge, you will finally get good views of the Colorado’s Front Range and Winter Park ski resort. At this point the rest of the hike is class 3 and will require that you stay on or near the ridge crest until you reach a false summit at 12,860 ft. Continue south along the class 2 ridge to Jasper’s real summit at 12,923 ft. Views of Arapaho Peaks, Navajo, Apache and Mt. Neva are excellent. Also, a look down the southeast face from the summit is quite a humbling sight.
Crampons and Ice axe would be recommended early season.
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