A group of us Grand Junction folk went to Silverton for the Fireworks.
Silverton always provides one of the best shows because of the acoustics that the surrounding mountains provide. While some of us went for a hike, Jenn and I went down in between Durango and Silverton to Cascade Canyon and checked out this huge flume and did some climbing in one of the best locations.
After the fireworks we somehow made it back to camp and mumbled about our previous plans to go up past Telluride and do Lizard Head Peak In the morning.
I balked at it as I know more people who have failed at this because of the weather than have succeeded. It seemed especially unlikely because we were still in Silverton. Garrett knew a short cut and at a not so alpine start of seven we drove over Ophir Pass. Jenn's subaru having mild issue with some spots. We passed a troop of "off Roaders" that seemed disappointed by the Subaru's performance.
When we arrived at the pull out I already had assumed in my mind that it would just be a hike but everyone seemed to think differently and wanted to press on to climb. The first crux was getting Kodi the Husky past all of the sheep that were being herded.
On the hike up we were serenaded by probably 200 hundred head of elk bugling. Kodi was on patrol making sure no scent or crevice was left unexplored.
I saw that the weather was starting to build and swirl around the peak but we decided we would at least get to the base.
The weather was still looking iffy, but we decided to give it a try. By this time it was probably 1. I was amazed the weather was still holding. There was three of us and to save time I climbed up and brought them both up. This was probably not the best idea as the quality of rock is so poor but they kept close together. The rock is just a series of stacked cubes waiting to explode on you. Luckily the climbing was easy.
The hairiest part was the shoulder you had to traverse to get to the second pitch. Much loose rock which we hoped Kodi was expertly dodging. Second pitch provided solid rock compared to the first pitch. Soon we were up and saw the summit register with fewer recorded ascents than expected.
Some Choss Rapping got us to the top of the first pitch where a re bolted anchor greeted us. I pulled outwardly on some of the webbing that held some relics left at the belay and they both came out. Probably not from the first ascent in the 20's.
Kodi was happy to see us and we set off back to the car. I marveled at our luck. It was quite the scenic choss pile.