Sketchy climb! I expected more snow,but got Lots of ice , and loose 4th/5th class climbing.(CRAMPONS ON CRAMPONS OFF, REPEAT) Went down the red gully route, for a tour of the Crestones.
Reminded me of Teewinot in the Tetons. Good steep snow for Colorado.
This was my first climb of the Peak. I went up and down the NW couloir. My partner waited lower in the couloir as I went on to the summit. On the top it was fogged in. It was an island in the sky! On the return crossing the ridge between Bears Playground and the Humbolt saddle I saw lightning strike the Needle!
I returned to this route on 8-5-00. This time we went down the Red Couloir and over to Broken Hand. We then completed a big day by doing the Need le via the standard route.
Ascended the Red Couloir and descended the NW couloir. Considerably stepper than the south face with looser detritus on the ledges. Had a scare descending a patch of snow as I slid ~10-15 feet before I was able to arrest.
This was the end of two 14 plus Mile days wiht lots of snow. I almost slid off of a rock ledge on the right side near the middle of the couloir.
Great Peaks!BrotherDirk was along for this one.
This route definately requires some good route finding skills. I referred to roach's book. did it solo, still alot of snow at the end of august. had to cross the snowy couloir a bit of the way up because the right side of the snow became unclimbable so i went to the left side and made my way from there. I REALLY wish i had crampons/axe. it would have made my experience much more sane.