Snowdon Peak Additions and Corrections

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San Juaneer

San Juaneer - Mar 20, 2005 9:56 am - Hasn't voted

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Snowdon Pk. is awesome, I climbed it as a memorial to my Father one day after he passed, on June 13th, 2004. I have lots of high 8 footage, but no pics or I would post them...

I ascended the N/W couloir, which starts out on snow at about 40 degrees. about midway up it was 50 degrees, and tops out near 60 degrees. It was really solid up high, but not quite ice, an exciting finish... I left the trailhead at 8:30, and topped out at 10:45. I downclimbed the extremely fun N/E ridge, rated third class, which I would liken to Ellingwoods S/W ridge, solid and sheer, with just a tad bit more route finding needed than Ellingwood...

There is another route (West Buttress/ 4th class) described in Rosebrough's 'Climbing Colorados San Juan Mountains', which I have not enjoyed. There are long, smooth slabs on the North side of this Buttress which overhang the N/W couloir, making it more dangerous than it is in itself. I would say that I got a later start than is advisable for my route choice, as melting snow was sliding off of these slabs landing all around, and scaring the crap out of me... I never climbed so fast... I think I shot up 800' in about 25 minutes. That's about twice my average ascent speed.

Certainly, this is one of Colorado's finest moderate peaks, with several challenging routes to choose from.

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