High on the list of most people's favorite Colorado mountains, including me. I've only done the peak once, in the late '70's, and it may have been my first San Juan 14-er. Did the mountain with Aaron, and the unusual thing about this trip came about because at that time some access roads were still open that are now gone. We'd just purchased CJ's, and were big on trying out new roads--well, we took a winding back ridge road, eventually bringing us out on to a ridge overlooking the Wetterhorn south/southeast basin. (And what a stupendous view that particular perspective is!) From there we did the mountain, which was considerably shorter than the standard routes of today. The thing of interest, and we didn't realize this until some time later, is that the area had just been declared a wilderness area, we had taken a wrong turn onto an access road in such a manner so as to miss a closed gate (the "normal" entry point) maybe a hundred yards further on--in other words, we may actually have been driving in the wilderness, and were probably the last ones ever to use that particular road. We'd never have done such a thing knowingly, and even back then the fine would have been substantial--ignorance is bliss, and we lucked out. And the mountain was terrific!
Did Matterhorn two years ago (2002) with Aaron and Ellen. Nice views of Wetterhorn and Uncompahgre.
A beautiful climb. Rope was nice for the final pitch. Not highly technical at all, but a fall would be serious.
This one wound up being a battle for me! I made it to the top after climbing up the frost covered crux. Exciting climb, all by myself--had the whole upper mountain to myself.
I am signing this summit log in a internet cafe in Ouray :)
Amazing climb. We actually went pretty far over towards Matterhorn Peak and then headed up grassy slopes and snow back over to the south ridge. This route is sort of in the Roach book but I think we went farther east than he suggests. There is a trail in between the two creeks that I think we were meant to find instead.
Last section got my attention but not nearly as bad as I expected. The ledges were very solid.
Nice climb end of September - colors were fanatastic.
Well, unlike "Ratballs", we were wearing clothes, so call us boring! We did the standard routes on Wetterhorn and Matterhorn. Matterhorn was easy and enjoyable. Wetterhorn proved a dandy little scramble on excellent rock! We hiked in the previous night from West Fork Cimarron trailhead and camped east of the 12500' pass east of Matterhorn Peak. Planned to take a 3-day trip to do Uncompahgre, but it seemed better to look at than to climb, so we just did Matterhorn and Wetterhorn and hiked out. Long day, but good fun.
Highest Naked Man in America:
I headed down Crestone-wards in the evening, but the weather there looked so appalling that I just kept on going, bearing generally towards the southwest. Midnight found me deep in the San Juans, pulling up to the Matterhorn Creek trailhead, where I truck-camped for the night. I backpacked in at 8AM, set up my tent just below the Matterhorn slopes, and then hiked around the shoulder across the open plains of tundra to Uncompahgre, which I climbed up a frustrating scree-filled couloir on the west side.
It felt so damned good to be back up high that I practically skied back down Uncompahgre and ran over to Wetterhorn--beating by twenty minutes, I might add, the summit-to-summit time of Matt Mahoney, the ultra-runner (I know, because he recorded his time in the summit register). It was 4PM, and the latest I'd ever summited. On Wetterhorn, the weather was so clear that I took all my clothes off and wandered naked around the summit for a half-hour or so.
I'm fairly certain that for 30 minutes, then, I was the highest naked man in Colorado, if not the country. Of course, by the time I got back to my tent (fully and appropriately attired), it was still only about 5:30PM, so I backpacked the whole damned thing down again and drove the 380 miles home--I never did camp.
Climbed solo from Matterhorn Creek in conjunction with Uncompahgre. Ascended the ridge from a snow couloir on the west side. The final pitch was covered in snow and ice - very treacherous!!
What a joy! Over from Matterhorn Peak. Fully enjoyed the smallish summit. Another beautiful June day in CO. The scrambling was great and solid for the San Juans. One of my favorite CO peaks. Such a distinctive mountain.
I love Wetterhorn. My favorite fourteener by far. I climbed it with my brother. We took turns dog sitting the giant Jax near the Ships prow as we did the third class portion. Neat Neat Mountain. I almost wish it wasn't a fourteener.
This was my 4th 14er. The top 200 feet was not as bad as I thought it would be. It very exposed, but the solid rock made it quite easy. Somebody told me that it is very intence and told me to bring a rope. Didn't bring a rope and there is no reason for one. The part of the climb that scared me was below where the rock is loose and slippery.
Overall it was a fun climb.
Not a cloud in the sky!
Awesome route. I was tempted to leave my first ascent as a snow climb of the face in the spring but the pictures of the ledges just looked too cool. This was my favorite 14er climb until the next day when I did Sneffels.
Little tiring after doing Matterhorn first though. Dropping that 800 feet and picking my way through the boulderfield took quite a bit of time.
Guess when the Matterhorn summit log was put out there.... 21 Aug 2001!
A strange weather day made for a quick climb: 2 1/2 hrs. from TH to summit! What a blast! A trip report is available here.
Started from Capitol City and climbed Uncompahgre first. Nice weather even at 2 PM. The last bit of exposed class 3 was scary but not hard.
Perfect day for climbing! We left the trailhead about 6:45am and had summited by 9:15am. Not a cloud in the sky when we began and only a few appearing on the way down. Trail was WELL marked all the way to the top. The last pitch was a lot of fun for our group of 3, kind of like picking your way up an uneven set of stairs. Rocks were firm and footing/handhold options plentiful. Lazed at the top for over an hour in the beautiful day and was actually able to place cell calls as well.
Got an early start after sleeping near the trailhead in the car, and kept a fast pace to avoid potential bad weather. I passed a guy from Texas who'd made a goal of climbing all of Colorado's 14ers (even more respectable for an out-of-stater!) and caught up with a father-son duo from Gunnison. We continued to the summit together. It was a fun climb to the top, and the view from the summit was great, too. With dark clouds closing in, though, I decided to forego an Uncompahgre summit bid. I felt better about my decision when I heard thunder higher up when I'd attained lower elevations.
We started at 7:30am up the trail and it was very easy hiking. We started to hiking away from Wetterhorn so at about 12,000 feet we decided to head west toward Wetterhorn. We found out later that we actually passed the turnoff up to Wetterhorn but it sure wasn’t marked very well. Soon we were at the ridge and knew after this was where the difficult part started. Roaches description of the route is pretty good and we stuck to the route and made it to the flat area just below what’s called the “ships prow”. We dropped our packs and at this point we had to climb up a 10’ rock to get to the top of a big slanted rock slab. There we sat and looked up at the hardest part of the hike. It was the 150’ class III pitch that looked like a big ladder and this was the easiest way to the top. We started climbing up the rock face. The rocks were very stable and I didn’t have any problems finding hand and foot holds. After about 10 minutes we were past the ladder and at the summit. After about ten minutes on the summit we headed back down. Going down was a more difficult than going up but not that bad and I thought that the exposure wasn't there like I've read in other reports.
We started the day with an ascent of nearby Matterhorn which provided excellent views of Wetterhorn and the route we would then follow. Two people in our group skipped Matterhorn and went directly to Wetterhorn. With difficulty we followed their progress through the tundra as they made their way which assisted us in finding a route from Matterhorn over to the ridge on Wetterhorn without too much difficulty. The ascent of Wetterhorn was a blast especially the last 150 foot section. I definitely would like to climb this mountain again. Next time I would like to get on top of the Shark's fin. In retrospect, I don't think it would be that difficult to do and would probably provide a very unique perspective.
Great climb on a scenic mountain in the San Juans. Ledges were fun and felt closer to class 3 than class 4, but I'm sure that's due to the exposure. Lightning chased us from the summit earlier than we had hoped.