A group of us used professional grade survey equipment to measure the drop to the saddle with Fletcher from the summit of "Drift" Peak. Drift Peak has a soft ranking on the high thirteener lists. In Roach's 13ner book it is listed as 13,900' and is placed between #71 Emerald & #72 Horseshoe Mtn. Its next highest neighbor is 13,951' Fletcher. Counting the contours gives an interpolated saddle drop of 280'.
I have a copy made from an old 15' topo that showed this peak as unnamed 13,922'. There is no spot height on the 7.5' topo. The word TENMILE is on top of it. We felt there was enough reason to wonder just how much the saddle drop is. If it turned out to be more than 300' that would add a new high 100 peak, and bump Dallas to 101. We had no ill intent towards Dallas Peak, we just wanted to know. We've been wondering about this one for years.
Our friend Warren back at Boston Mine sighted the prism we took to the summit. John & I then took the prism down to the saddle. A few windy minutes later Warren radioed back with the result.
The saddle drop was measured at 275'. We don't have elevations for either the summit or saddle because the survey instrument was not set at a known elevation. It was able to calculate the difference in elevation between the two points that were sighted.
It should be pointed put that while we were within an inch of the actual summit, at the saddle there was still quite a bit of snow. The actual saddle drop is possibly a few feet less than what we measured.
Third time was the charm. Excellent snow and weather conditions.
Awesome ski descent of the North Face. Sweet line, really steep and sustained for most of 2000+ feet.
Completed my conquest of the Tenmile Range 13ers w/ Drift. Climbed with JT on a kinda cold, kinda snowy, definitely windy day. After summiting, we skied the N face from pretty much the summit. Visibility and snow conditions were challenging, but the skiable line is pretty incredible.
This was my first climb of Drift. I did Fletcher first and then over to Drift. I returned to Drift on 8-28-04.
Traversed from Fletcher on a less than ideal early fall weather day, but it wasn't bad. This couloir was hard to spot as we traversed to high, but we eventually found it. Very loose in the couloir. Views would be great on a clear day.
Your damn straigh I was successful! Along with 5 other awesome SP members, this cold and windy day proved a test for endurance. Luckily we all felt pretty good and I had plenty of energy to summit! Glad I got to the top on my second time round, will have to come back and do some others in the area, like Pacific!
Exhilirating and charmed day with 5 other SP'ers, as noted below.
Climbed with nelson, brenta, CharlesD, Mountain Man Dan, and jfox8541 via Villa Ridge. This was the second try for all of us but Charles (it was his third). The extra motivation fueled the suffer-fest and we all managed to summit. Success after past failures was especially sweet.
Climbed with my wife on her 54th birthday. Perfect, cloudless skies. Temps of 100+ in Denver resulted in summit temps of 75 or so. Some of the loose 2nd class trash on the final 900 feet can be avoided by trending to the right and climbing some fairly solid, short, enjoyable 3rd class on the ridge proper. A fun climb; watch the woobly blocks on the way down & take your time. Perfect day in the hills with zero lightning potential.
A solo traverse of Drift, Fletcher, and Quandary. A stellar day.
I climbed this with my friend Mark and Wyatt. Only me and Mark summited because Wyatt injured his knee. October climbing is great in Colorado because you get solitude and descent weather. Drift Peak is a little harder than it looks but won't present the veteran mountaineer any issues. A female hiker had been missing for days on Mt. of the Holy Cross and we saw a search helicoptor flying around to the West looking for her...she never was found. Set aside time to explore some of the mines you'll encounter while hiking this approach. While on the ridge you'll get an awesome view of a cliff hanging mine on Atlantic Peaks West side
What an awesome time of year to acheive this summit, I'm envious. Why does winter climbing seem to be synonimous with suffering!?
Skinned up Mayflower to NW ridge(Villa). Crampons on for rest of summit. Low visibility(100-200 yards) on North summit, didn't have a map, but from memory we thought we were on Fletcher. 13,900 anyway! Descent was trecherous post-hole-style. Great day.
Rough route finding on the traverse from Fletcher, descended the south face.
climbed drift with my friend adam. we were able to follow a well-trodden path past the cabins. above 12,000 feet we postholed to our waists for a majority of the trip. what a challenge!
Great fun on this easy class 2 route and a wonderful view of Quandary from the summit.
Interestingly enough I too followed Kane's slightly different route. The rocks are loose on this peak and the slope is actually quite steep. A great peak that properly lords over the gorgeous Mayflower Gulch
Drift peak is a good place for solitude late in the summer season. Even during the summer it does not see that much traffic. The views are awesome, in particular the perspective you have on Quandary. Looking north you can follow the ridge and pick out the summits of Fletcher, Atlantic, Pacific and Crystal. If you approach from the west (Northwest Bowl/Villa Ridge route) the view from the basin below Crystal-Fletcher-Drift has a grand alpine feel. I had great weather for this climb, and given the short distance (~6 miles) took it easy and it made for a great day.
This is a very short, and stiff climb. I really recommend this loop route for the hike back over Gold Hill was the most memorable part of the day. The views of the connectiing ridge to Wheeler Peak was excellent. Close to Denver.