Bald Mountain and Black Powder Pass
We were a few weeks late to see the aspen show along Boreas Pass (11,481') - the area was beautiful - aspen or no aspen. We arrived at the small parking lot on Boreas Pass
near the small historic cabins. Boreas Pass Road was well graded and suitable for most 2-wheel drive vehicles. There seemed to be an awful lot of sightseers and bicyclists out.
After stretching and getting our daypacks ready we headed out along the Boreas Ditch trail toward the summit of Black Powder Pass
at 12,159'. There were a few short steep sections but overall this was a relatively easy elevation gain of just under 700'. At the pass we soaked in the views south
to the slopes of Boreas Mountain and the east
into the French Creek basin.
West from south ridge
After a brief rest we headed up the south ridge of Bald Mountain. This was a fairly steep, mostly off-trail, Class 2 slog with sections of serious talus and boulderfields. We occasionally paused to admire the views to the east of the Mosquito Range and the Ten Mile Range
. After the first false summit we noticed the amazing views of Boreas Mountain
and South Park
and even Pikes Peak - 65 miles away! Not long afterward we ultimately arrived at the south summit at 13,679' - merely 5' shy of the true summit but over a half mile away. My wife Julie looked at the yo-yo up and down summit ridge and decided it wasn't worth it for 5 extra feet. She sat in the summit wind break and enjoyed the serenity while I took about a hour to reach the north summit and return.
North from summit
It was really cool as we were the only ones above Black Powder Pass that day with Julie on the south summit (13,679') and me on the north summit (13,684') about a half mile apart. With the wind strangely absent for a few minutes we were able to talk back and forth with relative ease.
I took some nice pictures towards Breckenridge and the Ten Mile Range, Grays, Torreys and Lake Dillon
as I remembered all the times I had been down at the Lake and looked up
at Bald Mountain and the days skiing
at Breckenridge and said.....some day. That day had finally arrived. With a sense of accomplishment I returned to the south summit to join Julie and we headed back down to Black Powder Pass and ultimately to the trailhead at Boreas Pass.
Our only regret was not seeing any of the resident mountain goat
population of Bald Mountain.
Disclaimer: Rather than submit duplicate or repetitive pictures I have linked to a few previously submitted pictures by other SP members to give some additional photo reference to the text.