Mount Antero

Date to Climb: June 14, 2009

Date Climbed: June 13, 2009

Elevation: 14,269

Range: Sawatch

Latitude: 38.67410, Longitude: -107.08300

Route: West Slopes ll, Class 2

Round-Trip Mileage: 16 miles

Pre-Climb Comments

We did this peak last summer. It really was not a climbing peak. Instead it was more like a miners peak. Lots of ATVs (argh) and other loud noisy machines. The road goes almost all the way to the top. We headed off the road up the ridge, but will not do that again. It was fun but not worth the effort. On our descent last year we saw a bright blue aquamarine. It was unbelievable. We marked it on the GPS, maybe we will see it again. We will have to remember to bring a hammer. Oh, we will park on the paved road adding about five miles to the trip and an early morning creek crossing.

Post-Climb Comments

At 3:00 we woke and started our day. The night before we had gotten everything ready so that our morning chores were effortless. Eat, drink, drive to the trailhead, we were hiking by 4:00.

The weather was nice and cool. By the beams of headlamps we hiked our way up a four-wheel-drive road from the road below. Amy sprinted out into the darkness but I was not feeling great and had to work on getting into a hiking rhythm.

At 4:30 the morning began to shine in the east. (I added that because some folks might not ever see that time of day.) It was the classic summer mountain day that we had been wanting. We had to ford two creeks, I switched to some sandals to wade across the big creek. Oh, the water was oh, so, cold! Amy had on Gore-Tex boots and didn't mind if the water lapped above the soles. Jake, the dog, loved the crossings, and he was not even wearing Gore-Tex.

After the crossings the road got very steep. I still was having trouble pacing myself. Last July we did this hike and practically ran up it. Today, we struggled for each foot of gain. We really thought that we would be acclimated by now. We do need for our bodies to adapt soon or it will be a long summer.

Mount Antero

Mount Antero

Antero was quite popular today. The upper ridge was now covered. Quite a few unusual techniques and lots of determination was shown by the twenty, or so, people who would made the summit at the same time as us. A man and his daughter walked with us part of the way. It was her first fourteener. We wish her the best.

The hike down from the summit seemed never ending. I traded out my boots for sandals, but still managed a couple of small blisters. Amy spoke of her feet feeling like they were being pounded with a ball peen hammer. The pads on Jake’s paws were swollen and he wore boots for all of the class 2 sections (non-trail parts) of the climb.

Finally at around 1pm we returned to our vehicle, ready for a nap. We had a few chores to take care of but did get to sleep for an hour or so.

It was a good day, but should have been much easier if we had been acclimated.

Having Jake with us takes up a lot of time. We do not let him run loose (unless he is on a slope where we deem it is safer for him to go up or down by himself.) It takes time to manage him so that he brings joy to us but does not take away from other hikers' experiences.

Oh, we did not get off of the standard trails so we did not find any gems.

Mount Antero - June 13, 2009 summit check