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South Maroon Peak Climber's Log

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DigglerBell Cord  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Jun 11, 2010


Brutal day! Eric picked me up from the airport at 22.30 the night before. Had to give it a go on the day after I flew in, as weather forecast for next 3 days terrible, & Eric had to leave by Sunday.

Rolled into the porcupine-occupied Bells campground & ready to sleep ~3.30. Woke up 5.45. Ugh. Left day-use parking lot @ 6.43. Made good progress on chill approach. Crater Lake & environs beautiful- would be a wonderful place to camp.

Slow progress up the couloir, being we were both wasted from less than 3 hours of sleep. Snow slushy but consolidated. Ambiguous wording in guidebook led us to do an inobvious ascent above the Garbage Chutes on the R, instead of what appeared to be (upon inspection afterwards) the standard way up to the L.

After through the Garbage Chutes, angle amazingly consistent until the couloir terminus. Awesome to look down at the top of the couloir & see 3,000' straight down to the river!

While mostly good through the climb, the weather seemed like it might turn upon our reaching the notch. It hailed/snow lightly for a bit, making the rocks above wet. Despite my reservations about the questionable looking clouds above, as well as the slippery rocks, I decided there was no way I was leaving after all the effort expended at this point without giving it a go.

Despite the decent exposure at the get-go from the notch, holds were big and manageable. Went up steadily. From a technical standpoint, the climbing was not difficult; what was notable was the feeling that every hold might come out, the at-times huge exposure, and the rubble-covered downward sloping ledges. Moving across rock, vs. slushy snow, though, was gratifying, and the distance to the summit from the notch is relatively short. Moved on up, summiting at 15.14. Took a few photos, relished the fog in front of the amazing views, & departed at 15.21.

Getting to the notch, we took care of some odds & ends, & left ~ 16.45. Snow conditions (slushy with little bearing capacity) made me decide to downclimb the couloir facing in, which took some time.

It got dark a little above the Garbage Chutes, so instead of wasting a ton of time trying to find the way down our convoluted route, we just decided to bivy in our safe, relatively flat location.

While it was one of the shortest nights of the year, it was one of the longest nights of my life... Doubt either of us slept more than half an hour. After untold suffering, we finally departed shortly before 5. Route-finding & remaining downclimbing was uneventful. Got back to the parking lot ~9.30. While enjoying some recovery beers at the truck, SAR came by & found us, ensuring we were OK- thanks for looking out, Lark!

Epic trip with a good friend. Timing worked out great- the afternoon we returned it rained non-stop, with mountains hidden behind thick clouds.

Witnessed numerous incidences of rockfall.
Posted Jun 14, 2010 1:00 pm

dclimb14meAwesome  Sucess!


Awe inspiring, great views off the back to Snowmass and Capital. One of my favorites.
Posted Apr 26, 2010 12:18 am

bryangast2 day  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Aug 1, 1997


A with the connecting traverse.
Posted Jan 7, 2010 10:14 pm

myroneSouth Maroon via Maroon Lake TH  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Sep 11, 2009


Started up at 4:45AM and reached summit via south ridge route with several new friends at 11:31AM . Headed back down at 12:00 noon and back to the TH at 5:45PM. My 48th 14'er with perfect weather all day long....sweet!
Posted Sep 12, 2009 2:40 pm

cftbqSouth Ridge  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Aug 20, 2009


Camped overnight at the bent tree to shorten this route. The Hill of Death is unrelenting, and god-awful loose; actually worse coming down. Swung wide to the left to minimize the slope and enjoy more of the ridge. 10 hrs. RT with some 40 min. on the top in flawless summer sunshine. Route finding is challenging. Gullies are loose and crappy. Actual rock climbing and ridge walking is outstanding.
Posted Aug 21, 2009 1:55 am

noahs213One Traumatic Experience  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Jul 31, 2009


Horrible luck. Planned the traverse. Perfect weather turned into a whiteout and thunder on the middle of it. Long story short. Me and my climbing partner had to get rescued out by the Aspen Mountain Rescue. Will post a TR soon.
Posted Aug 2, 2009 5:19 am

Liba Kopeckovawith my dog  Sucess!

Liba Kopeckova

Started late from Maroon Lake parking lot (11:30), and ran the first section (until the bend tree). Was completely alone on the trail (midweek), and my dog got bloody paws from the sharp rock. Duchess was truly amazing (getting close to completing all fourteeners. I did not take her on Pyramid).

8/8/14 - 2nd time up South Maroon - the route was rerouted and is well marked with a cairn, a long haul up, felt technically easy.
Posted Jul 21, 2009 11:58 pm

jrfSouth Ridge
Date Climbed: Sep 6, 2008


11.5 hours to do South Maroon. We elected not to do the traverse. We did have perfect September weather all day. The descent back down to the valley was brutal on the knees.
Posted Mar 24, 2009 12:01 am

COhawkeyeSouth Ridge and Traverse  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Aug 23, 2008


Slog up the slope but worth it once the traverse began.
Posted Mar 18, 2009 1:46 pm

ajfraserbrutal bell cord  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Aug 24, 2008


I would normally never attempt a snow climb this late in the summer, but after some reconnaissance we found that last winter's epic snowpack was still holding deep and strong into August. With a 3 a.m. start we found the snow to be plenty hard up until the last 100 meters to the saddle as the sunrise began the thaw. That being said, there were a couple sketchy snow bridges to circumnavigate from underlying meltwater hollowing tunnels and 3 or more short sections where late thaw left 15 foot crux pitches of 60+ degrees. Very hands on and sustained. A very long and demanding couloir, but outstanding. Final rock scramble to S. summit was enjoyable, and a relief to finally shed the crampons. Descent of Maroon's east slope is every bit as brutal as described. Knees will be screaming at the bottom. Brilliant day.
Posted Aug 26, 2008 12:27 pm

mtnhiker13South Ridge  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Aug 23, 2008


Maroon Peak is a great mountain indeed. A little brutal on the way down otherwise it might rank in my top 5 ever. Once you gained the south ridge - the climbing was fun! And the route finding made it challenging as well - never a dull moment all the way to the top. I would have liked to enjoy the summit a bit more but we knew it would a long climb back down.
Posted Aug 24, 2008 11:13 pm

altitude14erRoute Climbed: South Ridge  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Jul 19, 2008


A fun scramble, it's all relative but I thought it was more fun than challenging. Bumped into this guy Aaron (also solo) and we decided to climb to the top together. Very high!!
Posted Jul 25, 2008 1:48 am

MountainHikerCOLong Day  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Jul 19, 2008


This was my third climb of Maroon. It was a very long day, starting and ending in the dark. We did the standard route. I left some skin from my hands behind on a rock that relocated when I grabbed it.
My second climb was on 7-24-99
Posted Jul 23, 2008 5:53 pm

hhsilleckRoute climbed: Bell Cord  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Jun 16, 2008


Perfect conditions on the snow, but still some worrying rockfall. Really fun snow climb and a neat summit. With Derek Dalton.
Posted Jul 22, 2008 6:28 pm

s_tuning@msn.comBell Cord  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Jul 2, 2008


Long day... Thunderstorms started about 11am and kept up off and on all the way back to the TH at 1700.
Posted Jul 3, 2008 7:34 pm

vanhornebell cord  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Jun 21, 2008


Perfect weather. Did the Traverse also. Getting down off North maroon was interesting due to the large amount of snow still covering the trail.
Posted Jun 24, 2008 2:14 pm

Eric HolleBell Cord  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Jun 16, 2008

Eric Holle

Ben, Dan and I climbed the Bell Cord and traversed to the summit of Maroon Peak on a very warm day. We skied from just below the couloir, but not the whole thing becuase of poor snow conditions. We climbed the Bell Cord a week prior and traversed to N Maroon Pk.
Posted Jun 16, 2008 10:30 pm

SarahThompson4x, Memorable Summit  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Jul 30, 2005


7/30/05 - Std route.

7/29/06 - Std route with traverse to North Maroon.

1/20/13 - Climbed the Bell Cord and lived to tell about it.

8/4/17 - Std route with traverse to North Maroon.
Posted Mar 28, 2008 11:06 pm

MountainHikerCOSouth Ridge  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Aug 1, 1992


This was my first climb of South Maroon. I did the standard South Ridge route. A friendly marmot tried to get in my pack.
Posted Feb 15, 2008 11:31 pm

tomlaurenBells Traverse  Sucess!
Date Climbed: Aug 8, 2007


From camp at Crater Lake, climbed the South Ridge of South Maroon Peak, performed the traverse to North Maroon Peak, then descended North Maroon's Northeast Ridge back to camp with my friend Keith. Descending Maroon Peak for the start of the traverse was one of the sketchiest parts. Picture steep slabs covered in ball bearings. Slipped and cut my leg on that section - still have the scar five months later.
Posted Feb 1, 2008 10:15 pm

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