What an awesome one-day solo ascent of Blanca and Ellingwood. Parked about one mile past the trailhead and began hiking at 7am. Summitted Blanca at 11:45am, the last 100 feet was a little more time consuming because of fresh ice and snow. Stayed about 150 to 200 feet below the ridge while traversing to Ellingwood. No snow or ice on Ellingwood. Some route finding issues on the way down Ellingwood. Hiked out and returned to the truck by 6pm. I love fourteeners in the Fall!
Nice traverse from Blanca.
Hiked up to Lake Como from 8800', set up camp, and then continued on to the Southwest Ridge. I took a fairly direct path from the unnamed lake to the low point of the ridge. The ridge was exciting - it looks in numerous places to be harder than 3rd class - but there is always an easy way around any difficulties. One of the best 3rd class routes I've done!
Great climb!!! I recommend this route over the South Face for any climber!
Climb this mountain on its own via the SW ridge. One of the best class 3 routes on Colorado's 14ers.
Climbed this as the third peak in Little Bear/Blanca/Ellingwood enchainment. Stuck to the ridge 90 percent of the way to avoid miserable talus slope. Seemed logical after doing Little Bear/Blanca ridge. Also descended Ellingwood's south ridge for continued 3rd and 4th class climbing. A banner day.
Descended from Blanca and traversed to the route. A cool sunny day but back in Texas it was 110 deg. I was glad to be on Ellingwood.
This route gets an early sunhit ... snow was softening up by the time I made it onto the SW face. Stuck to the ridge - some easy and fun scrambling. Several fun glissades on the way back down to Lake Como.
Nice relaxing traverse after Blanca - has anyone actually stayed on the ridge for this traverse instead of heading accross the face?
I had a fun night and day in the Lake Como basin, and climbed a somewhat obscure route on Ellingwood's south face: a small fissure to the east of the larger crease between the summit block and the southwest ridge (the one that most south face ascenders use). This one goes straight for the summit from the top of the talus slope just north of the lower Crater Lake.
The storm at Lake Como the night before was atrocious. I'm surprised nobody was killed.
Trip report here.
Had plans for little bear first, but weather caused a late start and ellingwood as a default. summited w/4 others with the same dilemma and plan.
What an awesome time to come to Como Lake! We didn't share this basin with *anyone* else all day. We tried out the SW ridge and loved it so much, we repeated it in 2003. A trip report is available here.
Windy morning! Bagged Blanca, Ellingwood, and Little Bear in one day.
Nice Mountain. I am suprised some people resisted recognizing it as a seperate summit from Blanca. My 10 month old puppy Sopris' second fourteener and fifth mountain. Raymond dog was along on this one as well.
Great, easy, fun traverse. Great view of the dunes and backside. Touch the stick for good luck! Have Fun! Upon desent, don't vear too far right. the gully is not somewhere you want to end up.
A little past Como Lake are the Blue Lakes which are at timberline. From there I could see Ellingwood and Blanca (ascended it last year). There was a lot more snow up there more than I thought. I had come this far I wasn’t going to turn around now. The next lake along the trail is Crater Lake at 13,000 feet. The snow was averaging about a foot deep now. There were other people up there that day so a trail had been cut in the snow, but everybody ahead of me was going to Blanca.
The last six hundred feet to the summit was steep and difficult. I was slipping and it felt like I was almost rock climbing in snow, needless to say it wasn’t very fun. I thought about quitting numerous times but I told myself that I wasn't going to do another fifteen mile hike up here again. That excuse kept me going.
I didn’t get back to the car until 6:30 and I started at 7:15 in the morning. It was a very, very long, tiring day both mentally and physically. Ellingwood is rated a Class 2 hike but not today. I haven’t had a lot of experience in rating harder hikes but this one was harder than Crestone Peak and the Needle both of which are Class 3 hikes. All I have left in this area is Little Bear and I won’t be doing this for another couple of years. Hopefully by then I will have a truck and would be able to knock about four miles out of the day.
We loved the Southwest Ridge so much last year, we had to make a repeat run on the way to Blanca this year. A trip report is available here.
Made the classic traverse from Little Bear and Blanca in a shroud of clouds. Couldn't see a damn thing.