Humboldt Peak

On Saturday, we climbed Humboldt Peak (Summit Video), a 14er down in the Sangre de Cristo Range, which is about 1.5 hours Southwest of Colorado Springs. We were a little bit apprehensive about the trip, since weather called for possible high winds and snow squalls, but the forecasters were being particularly squirrely regarding details and timing, so on Friday after work we made the drive down and slept at the trailhead. The trailhead in this case was as far as you could drive up a 4 wheel drive road, which ended up not being that far due to snow.

The next morning we got off to an early start at 6a. We planned on going up the East ridge route, which is primarily a winter route, and not as accessible in the summer time. After hiking up the road 2.5 miles to the formal trailhead, we began the ~2 mile bushwack to tree-line. These are the types of hikes my dad just loves and one guidebook directed to use intermittent game trails as you find them. I was prepared for the worst in my mind and was planning on a lot of post-holing and difficult route finding, but thankfully and very surprisingly another group had set a snowshoe track probably earlier in the week. This made that part of the hike much easier and pretty pleasant overall.

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After gaining the the main ridge and above treeline, we could see we still had quite a bit of work to do — over 2,000′ and 2 miles to the summit. The views were amazing and all the nearby mountains were popping out of the clouds.

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We made pretty good time and the terrain was quite nice and not too rocky or nasty scree. We were surprised too that the winds weren’t that bad. I was relieved since near the summit, the ridge narrows quite a bit with some nice exposure to the North Side.

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At around 11:30a, we made the summit and enjoyed a quick PB and J sandwich with nice views of the prominent Crestones behind us.

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I remembered to pack a sandwich for Maddy this time, and she was quite pleased as noted by gobs of slobber from her mouth. Three other guys were up there too and were trying to cook some hot-dog weenies over charcoal. It didn’t look like they were having much success. The wind had picked up quite a bit and it was clear that weather was blowing in, so we high-tailed it out of there. Overall, the climb took 10 hours, was 14 miles, and we gained 6,000 vertical feet. After chowing down some Little Caesars Hot N Readys back in Golden, we called it a night and crashed early.

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One thought on “Humboldt Peak

  • March 19, 2013 at 10:15 am
    Permalink

    Beautiful pics, but looked like a tough climb, including the beginning where dad and I would have both turned around. The view was absolutely gorgeous. Thanks for the post.

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