6/14, Tuesday - 1st Flatiron Tempo + Salomon - 5 miles, 3000', 1:38
Met Kendrick before the group run to hammer out a tempo lap of the 1st. I felt really good on the approach running strong until the final 3 or 4 switchbacks before the rock, just to get my heart rate down a bit. I felt like molasses on the scramble and was more than a bit frusterated to see a roped party right in the thick of the slot shortcut. I hadn't been the other way in months so I lost a bit of time there. I was then surprised/stoked to see my split on the face of 11:09, definitely could have broken 11min had the slot been open. Descended to Chautauqua for a round trip time of 34:32. Salomon group run and gelato afterwards.
6/15, Wednesday - Satan's Slab, Fist, Green Mtn - 6 miles, 2600', 2:01
Skunk Canyon was opened early (it is closed half the year for raptor nesting), so I finally got back in there. Today was supposed to be somewhat relaxed though so I limited myself to Satan's Slab, which was just as thin or thinner than I remember before hiking over to the Fist and then Green.
6/16, Thursday - Longs Peak - 11 miles, 5700', 5:25
The goal was to take Kyle up the Cables route, which we kind of succeeded in doing. We made great time to the base of the route but found the dihedral absolutely soaking and chocked with ice. I climbed up as far as I felt comfortable and tried punching the ice off to avail. We then downclimbed a bit and ascended a smooth slab of granite up to another ledge which traversed right to easier terrain. We ran into Peter on top (him ascending Kieners, saying it was perfect), he was headed down to Cables. He brought a rappel line and we should have just asked to borrow that as you will read. We definitely weren't downclimbing Cables so we thought the NW gully would shortcut the keyhole route well. Unfortunately, this too was full of ice so we humped back over the summit for a long descent of the standard keyhole. Having expected a much shorter day we were pretty beat and elated to finally reach running water in the boulder field.
6/17, Friday - Grays & Torreys - 7 miles, 3600', 2:21
With Jason and Doug. Tempo'ed up to Torreys hoping to break an hour but it wasn't in the cards today, 1:04:59. Waited to regroup on top before tagging Grays and running back down.
6/18, Saturday - 2nd, 1st, Morning After, Challenger, Takin' Care of Business, Hammerhead, Achean Pronouncement, Primal Rib - 8 miles, 4000', 3:30
Started stupid early to squeeze a bunch in before work which meant it was still basically dark for most of the 1st scramble. After I was heading down from Challenger I randomly decided I could do the chimney of Takin' Care of Business and it ended up going quite smoothly. Getting over to south skunk canyon was a bit heinous but soon enough I was enjoying the crack on Achean Pronouncement. I completely forgot how to downclimb off of that so I ended up doing some horrible zig zag down the west face then bailed halfway up Primal Rib to be able to get some breakfast before work.
6/19, Sunday - Longs Pk - 11 miles, 5100', 3:55
Boulder was far too hot run when I finished work so I drove straight to Longs. After getting some good beta I thought Kieners was worth a shot, I could always turn around. Well, I got to Lambs Slide and found the snow to be absolutely perfect, didn't even need rocks for hand traction (I still brought them just in case the snow changed though). Broadway was essentially clear and aside from a couple very wet (basically raining) spots the climb was nice and dry. Descending Cables felt very casual given the last few times its either been in winter with numb hands and crampons or earlier this week with 4 inches of ice on everything. Easy jog back down to the car with several stops to turn around and watch the sunset.
Good high volume week with quality time up high and at high intensity. I also spent most of the outings hanging out with good friends so that was even better.
6/20, Monday - Longs Pk - 11 miles, 5100', 4:01
After only being home for 9 hours I was back heading for Longs, this time with Kyle for his virgin trip up Kieners. We were able to follow all the steps I had kicked across the snow last night needing zero traction at all. Its always a priviledge to see someone on Broadway for the first time, so special. Cables was even more of a waterfall than yesterday but we got down just fine. This route is also perfect as there is running water every 10 minutes after you make it to Chasm Lake, so with a few snacks in my pocket I hardly need to bring anything!
6/21, Tuesday - Freeway & Salomon Group - 5 miles, 2300', 1:06
Easy 2nd with Kory then the usual group run.
6/22, Wednesday - Shavano, Tabaguache, Antero - 21 miles, 9200', 7:13
Started from Blanks cabin and after a few switchbacks took the east ridge all the way to Shavano's summit. I feel like the trail is probably just as fast here as the jumbled talus sort of messes with my hiking cadence and rhythm. I was on Tabaguache 30 minutes later ready to figure out my descent to Browns Creek. I decided to take a rib of talus which ended up being the most loose pile of rock I've ever been on, I had so many rocks tumble into my ankles I started getting really frusterated! Thankfully, I was able to traverse over to some snow and glissaded to just below treeline. I found a nice line along the marsh then waded through Brown's creek to take a line directly over Mt White's shoulder which contoured into Antero's south ridge. From Antero I ran east along a ridge then descended another miserable pile of talus until I found a very long stretch of snow which was fantastic for glissading. The trail down to the Colorado trail was great but I didn't quite realize how much running I had left to get back to the car, all with no calories or water.
|On top of Tabaguache looking at Antero in the distance.|
Kyle and I wanted to Audubon to Navajo but we both had almost no cash and were $4 short of the $10 needed to get to the trailhead. After learning that the nearest ATM was in Nederland it just made more sense to go do the Arapaho traverse. I hadn't been on the fun 3rd class traverse in a while and it may have been the better choice as the clouds situation suggested we'd probably have had to bail off the traverse anyways.
6/24, Friday - Longs Peak - 11 miles, 5100', 4:10
Up Kieners, down Cables with Kyle and Logan. Hadn't seen Logan in far too long (sometime early last fall), so I was stoked to show him up Kieners for his first time. We went quite casually for a slightly longer round trip time, but the weather was nice and we able to watch Tony and Jed work their way up the Diamond from various vantages on Kieners. Cables was less of cascading waterfall than it was, but there is still a few snow crossings on the upper north face.
|If you look really, really close you can see Tony on the Diamond|
Up and down Cables in the evening with Jack, who hadn't ever been on anything remotely technical or above 8,000ft in about 2 months. Not including a few stops for pictures I think we were under 3 hours, an especially good time for a first time up high in months!
|Still a good glissade below the North Face|
Long way to the grocery store.