Ascent of Mount Elbert on 2016-07-22

Climber: Oliver Staley

Date:Friday, July 22, 2016
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:4x4 Vehicle
Peak:Mount Elbert
    Elevation:14433 ft / 4399 m

Ascent Trip Report

Climbed Elbert at the tail end of a week-long trip that began with an ascent of Wheeler Peak in New Mexico. Spent the night in Leadville, woke at 5, and pulled into a very crowded parking lot at the Halfmoon trailhead at 6:15. The hike strayed pleasant and cool through the forest but began climbing dramatically after a mile, once I left the Colorado Trail. The trail was filled with hikers gassed by the unrelenting grade. I passed all sorts, including a Mennonite family, complete with women wearing long floral dresses and tennis shoes. After a bit of route-finding confusion on a particularly steep scramble beneath a false summit, I got back on track and reached the very crowded peak in 3:15. After a break for food and some chatting, I headed down. The descent was too steep to be comfortable but I made it down in 2:10 and in time for lunch. I celebrated my 35 US state high point with my family at the excellent Tennessee Pass Cafe in Leadville. The Mennonite family sat down at the table next to us.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:4400 ft / 1341 m
    Round-Trip Distance:10 mi / 16.1 km
    Quality:7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail
    Weather:Pleasant, Breezy
Excellent weather
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:4400 ft / 1341 m
    Distance:5 mi / 8.1 km
    Route:Halfmoon Creek
    Start Trailhead:Halfmoon   10033 ft / 3058 m
Descent Statistics
    Distance:5 mi / 8.1 km
    Route:Halfmoon Creek
    End Trailhead:Halfmoon   

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