A long schlog from Rt. 162 and more of an introduction to prospecting culture than I expected. Fun day on the massif, however.
Parked at the Baldwin Gulch Trailhead on Fri. evening and hiked up the 4WD road for 3 miles to the road junction at 10,840'. Found a nice campsite here BUT lots of use in this area by 4-wheelers. Just as I was going to sleep a group pulled up and camped about 100 yards away. They yelled & hacked away at trees all night, capped by shooting off a gun at 3:30 AM! 18 times! My worst camping experience ever. Some guys I met near the summit the next day said that they could see the rednecks from where they were camped & they appeared to be shooting at fish in the creek! Thanks to the early "wake-up call" I started up early & took the road to about 12,700'. I left the road & hiked east up the steep and sometimes loose slope toward the 13,700' "saddle" on the south ridge. I wouldn't recommend this route & I noticed later that Roach's 2nd edition guide no longer shows this as a variation. The last climb up the south ridge to the summit is steep but short. On the descent I took the road all the way down except for an obvious (but unmarked) trail at about 13,000' that cut off a long switchback.
Had a great early season hike with very little in the way of snow. Climbed on a weekday, so hardly any snow.
Great day... parked a few hundred yards down from the 4WD parking at 10,840... the stream at this parking lot was running full... but crossable... evidenced by the numerous cars which where driving higher than the 4WD parking lot. We hiked to a gulley around 12,000 and went straight up the slope instead of following the road for numerous swithbacks. We regained the road and continued around the shoulder of Antero to a road juncture... We then hiked up the road a short ways and again went directly up the slope instead of following the road... until we gained the high shoulder at around 13,000ft (and the end of the road). The road stopped here and we had a delightful hike across some rugged rock outcroppings and there was some shallow snowfields that didn't slow us down. The summit approach was up a steeper slope with suprisingly stable rocks. This last section of steeper slope had about a 600ft elevation gain and skirted a stretch of snow. The summit had wonderful views of Princeton. Weather was perfect - blue bird skies... and we took ample time exploring and searching for aquamarine... (we found none). A great hike with a minimal amount of people. (Traffic was stopped at about 12,400 ft at a snow drift - rendering the rest of the road impassable to anything but a dirtbike).
Camped at the 4wd trailhead at the road junction to Antero & Baldwin Lakes. Left at 6:30 in the morning and reached the South Ridge of Antero after an hour and a half. Spent the next hour working my way to the top of Antero in at times fierce winds, reaching it at 9:00. Glissaded part way back down and hiked over to North Carbonate via the East Ridge in another 2.5 hrs before descending the North Ridge back to my car in 2 more hours in remarkably fine weather. I didn't see anyone all day, although a couple of others had signed the North Carbonate log before I arrived.
BEEEEAUTIFUL DAY! Lots of sunshine and little wind...unfortunately that made for a looong trip back to the car. The trip up was great, the snow was relatively hard and easy to traverse. However, most of the trip down was through wet, heavy, snow that one often sunk down knee to thigh deep in (even with snowshoes on). Many times our snowshoes and poles would stick in the snow and trip us. We ended the day very wet and tired, but very satisfied as well. Gorgeous views as always!
We started beloe treeline, at river crossing. Sort of irratating to see people driving halfway up the mountain but fun none the less. Summit ridge is simple, but when we did it the wind was blowing hard. Good summit. Descent is really quik if you dont follow the trail and just go strait down.
I got up around 6:00am or so and got out of the campsite before I had to pay $12. I wasn’t too motivated because I couldn’t find the road the night before. I went up a little further and there it was. I headed up the shitty 4X4 road for 3 miles. This was the worse one yet. I got to the Baldwin Creek crossing and decided to keep going. I went to 11,245’ so I could still get 3,000’ of vertical. I started on foot at 8:00am. I continued up the road switching back and forth until about 13,000’. In the mean time a few vehicles passed me. When I got around to the south side of the mountain I had a good view of Shavano and Tabaguache. I continued and started switchbacks again up to 13,700’. The road was worse on this section. The last 500’ looked wicked but wasn’t that bad. I summited around 11:00am. I stayed on the top for a while and headed down at 11:30. I hauled ass as much as I could. I ran for a bit and took one of the gully shortcuts. I got to the truck at 1:15pm. I made great time. I was home by 4:30pm.
Solo trip. I actually slept in the back of my Jeep on Kenosha Pass the night before. Don't ask. I parked just below 11,000 feet and walked up. It started to snow at about 13,000 feet, but it just made it fun! I met Bob on the summit and we swapped cameras for the summit pic. Good times!
Ah...the days before owning a 4X4. The haul up the road from the automobile TH is quite a haul. The weather was perfect, so that wasn't an issue; just needed endurance. Fortunately, I met a guy on the way down that had a pickup at the 4X4 TH and he was nice enough to drive me back down the final 3 miles to my car, making it "just" a 13 mile day.
This was my least favorite mountain. The group I was with drove up to the 10,840 ft parking lot. The rest of the trip was on a road with cars going by. It was hazy from the fire that year as well.
Awesome run with my girlfriend and dog. Be sure you hit the Jeep road before dawn as it takes some time and can be a bit wet due to streams.
Drove up the Baldwin Creek to the 4WD parking area. We hiked the road for most of the way, and then climbed up the talus slope to the summit. We saw a few vehicles that made it up higher on the road too.
The hardest part was getting up to the trailhead. Very rough! Not a big fan of hiking up the road ... sharing the "serene" mountains with ATVs and four wheelers makes this one of the less pleasant 14er routes in my opinion.
My 27th 14er (Half Way!!) on my 27th birthday!! We made it to the summit in 2 hrs. from where we ditched the truck just above tree line and then got back off of the ridge just before the sleet and snow moved in. The crux of this climb is getting out of bed early enough to beat the weather and not on the ridge.
My initial plan was to drive to the 4wd parking spot up the road, but after scouting it out the day before I decided I liked my car too much to chance it on the rough, rocky road. So my buddy, Chris Calvert, and I hoofed it up from the Blank Gulch TH at 9420 ft. The hike up the road was uneventful, switchbacks offered some nice views of North Carbonate, and the final part of the climb was fun finding a route to the summit.
For a road hike, this was great!
Not too exciting when you walk the road the whole time but I LOVE LOVE LOVE rocks and was having a gay old time looking for something exciting while I was walking! The ridge was a little more work than the road, that's for sure! Had a decent time, even though Bryan made me hike down the road the night before to make it official. People thought we were crazy when we told them why we did that!
Drove the 4x4 road up Baldwin Gulch. The road is rough at the beginning, but gets better the higher you go. Made sure to get the 3,000' gain and hiked the road to about 13,500'. Pretty boring and I did not realize how loose it was until we headed down. From the saddle to the summit was a lot of fun. A nice little ridge walk through good rock. Then we headed up to the summit. The last couple hundred feet was steep and on good rock. However, there was not much of a trail at times, but it was obvious where we were headed.
This is one mountain I hope I'll never be bored enough to climb again. I climbed Princeton in the same weekend, so I didn't have to dedicate an entire drive to Summit County simply to top out on this superannuated pile of choss.
Wait! I do remember something of interest: the astounding hailstorm that I raced down the peak. Three inches of hail in 20 minutes, and only a think Gore-Tex to protect me. That hurt.