west ridge

Page Type Page Type: Route
Location Lat/Lon: 39.23970°N / 106.1834°W
Additional Information Route Type: scramble/ snow climb
Additional Information Time Required: Most of a day
Additional Information Difficulty: class 4
Sign the Climber's Log


From Leadville, head about 6 miles up Lake County 2 south then east, past ASARCO Mine, staying left at mile 4 where the road turns to dirt. In winter passenger cars should park at the ASARCO mine.
From the trailhead one can head up Dyer Ampitheater to the saddle between West Dyer and Dyer, or for more fun head up over East Ball and continue along the ridge over West Dyer and from there down to the saddle.

Route Description

This ridge is called a class 3 in Roach's high thirteeners book, but unless one stays well below the ridge on the south side, this is a solid class 4 route. If one wants to stay below the ridge, it can be crossed along a talus field to a large gully (not the many small ones) which can be ascended, avoiding the major difficulties of the route.
Otherwise, from the saddle stay on the ridge above the first cliff band. after the first few hundred feet of class2/3 scrambling one will encounter a small face that can be ascended via a chimney to the left or right. From here continue up a small gully, either in the gully or along the rocks to the left. This gully tops out at the butress you will surely notice from below.
A small ledge (a foot wide) that hovers over the butress and at least six hundred feet of air on one side and a steep gully on the other must be crossed at this point and the next gully must be entered. From here the climb requires plenty of route finding a crosses several gullies. At one point you will enter a gully that has a difficult wall on the other side. descend into this gully, around the bottom of the wall (about 1/3 down the ridge) to ascend the large gully about a hundred feet further. If not you will have to make a hairy descent into a small steep gully with vertical cliff walls and descend this anyway. Once you ascend the large gully it can be exited onto a large rock band, much less steep than what has already been done. From here it is more or less of a ridge walk to the summit.

Essential Gear

In the winter crampons and an ice axe are necessary. There are places on this route where a belay could be used.

Miscellaneous Info

If you have information about this route that doesn't pertain to any of the other sections, please add it here.


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