Front Range Trio

21 May 2005 - by T Colorado

In a continuing effort to "get into climbing shape" (what the heck does that mean anyway ... hehehe), we selected a climb close to Denver with the main challenge being elevation gain and loss. After parking at the Bakerville exit off of I-70 (the same trailhead used for Grays and Torreys), we walked across the overpass and headed up the drainage to Bard Peak (the prominent snowy summit you can see from the parking area). The hike is a bit steep (but much easier with the trail if you are lucky enough to find it). The terrain was dry until we reached about 10,000 feet where we followed game tracks and did some postholing. We popped out of the trees after only about 20 minutes of thigh-deep snow and followed tundra to the ridge and then to the right to the top of Bard Peak. After descending down the ridge, we walked over Robeson (which was the only summit of the day with a register --- Mike Garratt had climbed this peak in July of 2004). We then walked down Robeson and up over to Englemann (hitting the summit at 11:00 a.m.). The weather was beautiful and the wind continuous. We took our time coming back (bypassing Robeson on its east side), up and over Bard Peak and back down the same way we came up. This "climb" is rated a 2 merely due to the elevation gain and loss (approximately 8+ miles roundtrip). When we arrived back at our truck, there was a nice man from France who was scoping out the road into Grays and Torreys and debating whether or not he should try to drive his car up the road. There was much discussion, some of which involved the fact that he did not bring his ice ax along with him to conserve weight. Oh my ... that eliminated great glissading potential. We're sure he made it, though, based on sheer tenacity. Happy Trails!


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