Great day with nice views of the Sawatch.
Our second attempt on Columbia, we had gotten snowed off the first time. We climbed from Frenchman's Creek, a great alternative to the main route. We didn't see anyone until near the summit. It was definitely a rocky climb.
3rd time's the charm. After being turned away by and EARLY morning storm, and then a sick partner, I finnaly got her done. I saw 18 Mountain Goats on the summit!
A really rough trail from Harvard as well as the descent. Not to mention the clouds started rolling in at 1000. The high point was 17 mountain goats with their bright white coats.
A trip report on 14ers.com recently referred to Columbia as an "evil mountain" that "sucks beyond belief." How very true! While Harvard is tall and beautiful, Columbia is basically a mound of talus and scree. Still, it is checked off and I don't have to go back! Climbing this hill makes me really look forward to going to the Crestones next week.
We stayed high on the traverse, keeping the climb at sustained exposed 4th class with a 2-3 5th class moves sprinked in. Rock was a bit loose, but a very enjoyable climb. Back at the car at 12:35. Descent off Columbia was not bad at all, especially after the traverse.
A very long day! Got caught on the traverse by some storms which didn't help, but we got both peaks!
The climb up Harvard was quite scenic and very enjoyable on a great trail. The descent below the saddle (12,700') with Columbia was pretty good but the low point and the first part of the ascent up to Columbia was pretty rough with lots of boulders, medium snow fields, lots of zig zagging, etc. If I had to do this again I would go even lower to avoid this mess. A minor system with thunder just to the east resulted in us spending just a minute or so on the summit of Columbia. We even had a little snow for about 30 minutes. The descent down Columbia was pretty rough but I didn't think it was as bad as advertised as long as you find the loose trail and don't go down the scree. Overall a long but scenic day!
Did the "traverse" from Harvard, leaving the ridge well before the Rabbits. A very long day, didn't reach Columbia's summit until after 4 pm. Cold and windy by then. Still, a great combo. 14er #26 for trishapajean.
Did this one several years ago. Tried for Harvard on this trip but was denied via lightning.
*cough, cough* Great way to spend a sick day. Thought about heading over to Harvard but the weather was kinda sketchy.
My wife, Marella, and I encountered *very* little snow on the way up Horn Fork Basin. Camped near the fork heading up to Columbia, beautiful warm June night. Hike up and down was a bit tedious and snow free. All in all a good day in the high country.
I was the only sole on the peak the entire day that I could tell? It was a challenging day as much snow remained in Horn Fork Basin, the trail kind of dissappeared and I found myself bushwacking to the summit. Lost the snow overed trail on the descent and spent an hour & a half offtrail ("LOST") in H.ForkBasin. A GREAT ballbust..
Gotta love CO and days when you can climb two peaks.
My Sawatch finisher! hiked up the East Ridge via Three Elk Creek and traversed around and down the Southeast Ridge. Nice circle tour, but a strenuous "early" season hike, over 4800' of vertical takes its toll when you haven't been climbing with regularity!
We survived a major thunderstorm on route from Harvard to Columbia. Made the summit of Columbia as well after all. What a day! I didn't enjoy the descent off Columbia. The route was just so loose. The rest of the hike was great. Our photos are here: Mount Harvard and Mount Columbia as a day hike
lots of sidehilling as I got off route. Did Harvard seperately
Hailstorm began just after leaving summit so took shelter. Eventually decided not to wait for it to quit which was just as well as it was still hailing back at parking lot.
Climbed Harvard and Columbia together in one day (then camped below treeline). Harvard was fun - Columbia, not so much. 3 hours to summit Harvard, 5 hours to get from Harvard to Columbia. My advice: do this one separately!