Wetterhorn's Summit April 1, 2007

Due to the wintertime road closure, this solo climb started at the Nellie Creek Trailhead (at Henson Creek) on March 30 sleeping in the car after a long day of travel. A 9 hour approach hike in cold wind-blown snow of March 31 led to where I set up base camp on a 12,900' ridge on the flanks of Mt. Uncompahgre. From there I set out before dawn of April 1, 2007 for a long trek to Wetterhorn in deep snow, frequently post-holing (even with snowshoes) at the lower elevations, ascended the glorious east face snow slope, and a few rock climbing moves to the summit in perfect weather. Summit day turned out to be a 19 hour affair by the time I made it all the way back to my tent because the warm weather that came through during the day melting the snow (10 hrs to summit, 9 hrs back to tent). Slept hard as the wind howled through the night. Off mountain mid-day April 2, and sadly I had no time to climb Uncompahgre, even though I hiked past it twice.


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