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South Ridge-via "Skiers Point"
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Geography

South Ridge-via "Skiers Point"

 

Page Type: Route

Location: Colorado, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 39.68590°N / 106.2614°W

Object Title: South Ridge-via "Skiers Point"

Route Type: Hike/Scramble

Time Required: A long day

Difficulty: Class 3

Route Quality: 
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Page By: Kane

Created/Edited: Jul 16, 2004 / Jul 16, 2004

Object ID: 161528

Hits: 4573 

Page Score: 72.08%  - 2 Votes 

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Approach


First do not attempt this route until late June or early July. The crux requires about 20-ft of traversing a wall of rock. When the snow starts to melt away from this wall of rock (late June) use the trench provided to traverse. It’s hard to say if this is the best time to do this route but I wouldn’t want to do it earlier in the season. Later in the season might be best.

South Ridge-RT-10.5 miles & Vertical Gain-4,958-ft

From the Bighorn Creek Trailhead at 8,600-ft, hike 1.8 miles and 1,300-ft, on a good trail to a headwall that protects the upper Bighorn Creek Valley. Continue up this steep section of good trail and finally top out above the headwall. The trail relents at this point. Continue 1.16 miles into Upper Bighorn Creek Basin to 10,850-ft; pass an old beat up cabin en route. From here locate the tree-covered moderate slope to the left (west,) this slope will escort you into the pristine, high basin to the west. Locating this basin on a topo map first will expedite the climb up to “Skiers Point.”

Route Description


From the high westerly basin, locate a steep grass covered slope directly north that will escort you to the crest of the south ridge of “Skiers Point.” Ascend this steep slope and gain the ridge crest at 12,120-ft. From the ridge crest, ascend the south ridge of “Skiers Point,” negotiating steep grassy benches. The ridge will begin to narrow at 12,500-ft. Stay as close to the ridge crest as possible, dropping down the west side of the ridge to bypass any technical difficulties. The rock here can be loose considering this route is rarely climbed.

At 12,840-ft the ridge will suddenly end. There is a nasty notch to negotiate. There is one and only one option for getting around this little problem. First, go all the way to the end of the slope, where the ridge suddenly drops straight down into the notch. From here, locate a steep class 3 dirt down climb on the right (east), descend this about 15-ft. From here traverse the slope carefully, hugging the wall of rock to the left. There is a fair amount of exposure here especially if you have snow to negotiate. Traverse to the low point in the notch. From here it’s an easy class 3 scramble to the summit of “Skiers Pont.” (12,940-ft.)

The rest of the route is straightforward. From “Skiers Point,” hike .3 miles to the summit of “Climbers Point.” From “Climbers Point,” descend some easy class 3 into the saddle in between it and Mount Solitude. Ascend grass slopes up Solitude’s south slopes to the summit. (13,090-ft). It is a half mile from “Climbers Point” to Mount Solitude.

Essential Gear


No special gear is need during the summer months. An ice axe might come in handy in the spring and might also give you other options to ascend Skiers Point such as snow couloirs from either the Bighorn Creek side or from the cirque to the southwest.