Page Type Page Type: Trip Report
Date Date Climbed/Hiked: Nov 7, 2009
Activities Activities: Mountaineering
Seasons Season: Fall

Trip Report

American Peak 13,806, Jones Mountain 13,860
Solo from Burns Gulch TH

I left home at 4a.m. and arrived at Burns Gulch TH at about 6:50. I was underway by 7:00. I decided on leaving the snowshoes in the truck. I carried crampons but never wore them. I took a different approach than last week on Niagara. I took the northern fork of Burns Gulch and traversed under Jones Mountain’s north face. I found a route up to the American/Jones saddle.

From the saddle, the snow was sparse. I followed the “trail” across the talus slopes of American’s west ridge. I summited all the minor peaks on the west ridge route, as I remembered from climbing Victory Col and going down Traitor, that the views were awesome. We previously failed to summit American Peak because of a nice June snowstorm.

I took a direct line into Snare Gulch (straight from American towards Jones). As I was almost off American’s south slope, I fell injuring my knee badly. I’m pretty sure I strained or tore my MCL. I got my head together and realized that I had no choice but take some ibupropen and do my best. It was very weak for the rest of the trip. I used my hiking sticks like a cane. All’s well that ends well.

I started up Jones Mountain on a SE ridge. I’d say the line was easily 3rd class with some moderate snow slopes. I later joined the NE ridge route. I left the summit of Jones Mountain via the west ridge. Instead of dropping into the valley, I followed the west ridge all the way back to my vehicle. I arrived back at 4:30.

The snow and cornice on Jones NE ridge was a little problematic as it was getting soft and the rocks shifted easily below the snow. I didn’t set any speed record and lost use of GPS (battery failure). So I have no idea about distance and vertical gain. The wind gusted a few times, otherwise the weather was spectacular.

American Peak/Jones Mountain Saddle

Jones/American Saddle

American Ridge

American Peak Ridge

American Peak

American Peak

Handies Peak through window in American Ridge

Handies Peak

American Peak Summit

American Peak Summit

Half Peak from Snare Gulch

Half Peak

Northern View from Jones Mountain

Northern View from Jones

Route I followed up Jones NE Ridge

Jones Northeast Ridge

Jones Summit

Jones Mountain Summit

Jones Summit

Jones Mountain Summit

Jones Mountain West Ridge

Jones Mountain West Ridge

Jones Mountain "Splattski"

Jones Mountain  Splattski


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Bob Sihler

Bob Sihler - Nov 9, 2009 10:56 am - Voted 10/10

Fun stuff

I enjoyed this and your other recent San Juans TR. Way to get out there and enjoy the snow and do your own thing.


BigRob - Nov 9, 2009 11:46 am - Hasn't voted

Re: Fun stuff

Thanks Bob. I have enjoyed your photo's and TR's as well. I jacked up my knee at the exact worse spot on this trip, but I know I will not give up soloing. Not that partners are bad, they just don't always work out.

Viewing: 1-2 of 2



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