Climbed from the trailhead. After thinking better of the posthole hell that getting to Columbia would be, I decided to scramble the other direction to UN 13580. Ended up being a ridiculously fun scramble on overhanging blocks above Missouri Basin.
Packed in to below treeline and tackled Harvard and Columbia the next day. Mt. Harvard was a sheer joy - a beautiful hike, Columbia, on the other hand, was not nearly as much fun.
Packed in late Wednesday afternoon with Mountain Girl and camped below timberline. Up early Thursday for the summit hike. The summit rocks presented a bit of a challenge! Weather moved in while on top and forced a fast descent through a heavy grapple storm. Very cool climb!
Started from the North Cottonwood TH at 6:10, reached the summit at 9:40. The upper part of the mountain was covered in snow (and cold), and the summit scramble was treacherous. The slick rock and possible weather moving in made me change my mind about scrambling over to Columbia. Too bad the afternoon turned out to be great weather! RT in 7h.
Now you have me blushing, your awesome Rebecca
I just can't stop climbing with this dude, even though we just don't really seem to get along that well. He's IRRESISTIBLE. Anyhoo, Harvard is fun. Hail is fun. (Why am I always getting hailed upon?) One of our friends we were with was initiated into the dudethatmusthurt fan club when dude pulled the guy up the last slab as he was about to break down from fear of heights. Aren't we all dudethatmusthurt groupies, when we really sit down and think about it????
Was a VERY long day, took some folks fresh from sea level to the summit. The trekking was very slow but everyone had great spirits throughout the day. Everyone ended up thankful for the summit and I was glad to help these people attain their first Colorado 14'r, I am thankful for Rebecca asking me to help with this adventure, Got blasted with Hail for about 15 minutes. Felt like needles hitting your head. GOOD TIMES!
Again, uncertain about the exact date; just updating my history. Camped high in Horn Fork Basin the night before, after summitting Yale. Made the summit well before noon, then spent the rest of the day struggling over to Columbia. My 4th fourteener.
3 1/2 hours to the summit in the cover of darkness via standard route. Awesome sunrise! Then on to Columbia...
after three spring attepts up the basin, finally got it.
Tough day for me. I'll never cheer for Harvard or Columbia in the NCAA tournament again!
Camped in Horn Fork. Bad mosquitos. Summited Harvard the following morning in under 3 hours. Followed the entire ridge over to Columbia. Rapped once down 30 feet or so of some real exposed technical stuff. Went unroped over 3rd, 4th and some low 5th the rest of the way. Didn't get to climb the rabbit :(
Very hot and clear day. Great views all around, tricky and interesting connecting ridge. Mosquitoes weren't afraid to tag along for the ride below tree line to and from camp at North Cottonwood TH.
Climbed Harvard via Horn Fork trail, then traversed to Columbia via Frenchman Creek and descended the SE ridge. This is the best route on Columbia but I would recommend the other direction because the ridge has no trail and is very steep below treeline. The N. Cottonwood road has gotten worse this year so I had to park 2 miles east of the Silver Creek TH where the route ends. This made it a 20 mile hike in about 10 hours.
Tip for heading South on the connecting ridge: the trail hugs the ridge and heads for the sketchy towers called the Rabbits. If you don't want to do them, leave the ridge early. There is a long slash of a ridge heading down into Frenchman Creek basin, and it will block your way, offering you unpleasant rocky footing and steep, loose scree. You can't see this ridge from the Harvard side till you're on it. If you want to avoid it, head down the grassy slopes, which will feel early.
This double is a long hard hike, especially doing Harvard first. The descent from Columbia is a down climb on braided trails of skree. If I ever do this again it will be an ascent of Columbia and a descent on the "stairs" from Harvard. Someone has done some "serious" work on the Harvard trail. It's great!
Awesome day, beautiful weather. The full circuit is a long hike.
Camped in Horn Basin and summited about 1:30 pm.
Had the summit to myself, as my partner's low exposure tolerance kept him about 10 feet below the summit. We had never been there and were a little suprised that the summit was not a simple walk-up. Easy, easy, class 3, no doubt, but for those with no exposure tolerance, it can be too scary. Be sure to approach the summit from the right (NE) instead of approaching from the left (SW) where the big cairns are, if you want to avoid any class 3.
My partner didn't want to posthole through the large snow bank under the summit rocks, nor did he want to down-climb and try another approach, so we had coffee just below the summit on the ridge, enjoyed the weather, the views, and the marmots. Fat little buggers! Have you all been feeding them? They seemed pretty unafraid ...
Bit of a cornice that sits on top. Great views!
Beautiful basin, fun rocks at the top.