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Ellingwood Point  
Report
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Route  Conditions Information  Posted By   Posted On    Photos  Comments Likes Dislikes    
2014-09-08  North Ridge via South Zapata Creek  Trail is in great shape up till S. Zapata Lake. The C2 Couloir was horrendous (predictably), especially coming down, with no snow. Still now snow on trail at any point. addrock528   2014-09-11  0     Edit Delete 
2014-09-06  North Ridge via South Zapata Creek  We climbed Ellingwood via Zapata Creek trail yesterday. Overall, this was a great route. We saw three other people all day. The lower part of the trail is in outstanding shape and well maintained. This is surprising as I understand this is a seldom-used approach to Ellingwood. The north ridge is challenging and has a short knife-edge that are all very fun and good for folks like myself that enjoy a thrill but not too much. The ridge itself is narrower than I expected but there are two basic options as described in the route description. The shady spots above about 13,700‘ were icy early. The icy part we couldn‘t avoid was just a flat part of the SW ridge with talus. This made it challenging for footing (but doable) in that part. The ice forced us onto the north ridge proper (the challenging part) which was in the sun. The ice had melted by the time we descended so we had the ridge and slightly below the ridge options which were now in the sun without ice. Of note, and the primary reason for this report, as this is the part of the route I didn‘t like. We ascended C2 and our group split and we descended both C2 and C3. Neither are good options (unfortunately, they are the only). C2 is steeper with fewer rocks all of which are loose in the upper half. When one breaks loose, it can roll a long way. With seven in our group this made it challenging on the ascent. We tried to stay on either the left or right side of the gully where there is solid rock for hand and foot holds. At the top, definitely, go right as one in our group went left and found it icy and very steep. The traverse along the ridge from the top of C2 to C3 seemed longer than the half mile in the route description and we almost descended the couloir to the east of C3 thinking we had made C3. I‘m glad we didn‘t ascend this route which was our original plan. We didn‘t follow the ridge the whole way but it was definitely more stable than contouring. C3 was not as steep as C2 and shorter. It contained LOOSE talus, larger at the top than the bottom. There was NO WAY to prevent it all from sliding/rolling. Descending was, essentially, sliding with the rock. Wouldn‘t have been any fun ascending either. At the bottom of the couloir, we crossed the rock glacier rather than going around it above the small lake. The north side of the rock glacier was also very loose and unstable. In retrospect, I would have gone below the rock glacier and hiked just above the lake. A recent post compared these two couloirs to the West Slopes of Columbia and Columbia was the preference. I think I agree and but never thought there would be a less-desirable route than Columbia West Slopes for me. Again, I like most of this route. C2 is the best option as it saves considerable distance and C3 is really not any better than C2. glenmiz   2014-09-07 5  2    Edit Delete 
2014-09-06  Southwest Ridge  Great conditions on the SW ridge today. There were ice covered rocks the last 200 ft. or so before the summit until midday sun got to it. awilbur77   2014-09-06  0  3    Edit Delete 
2014-07-04  North Ridge via South Zapata Creek  Summer conditions in the Zapata Lake area and on both Ellingwood and Blanca. The snow on the C2 couloir is gone, except for a tiny, insignificant patch near the top. esagas   2014-07-04  0  2  Edit Delete 
2014-06-13  South Face  Did the traverse from Blanca to Ellingwood today. Trail is basically clear of all snow; well any snow can be avoided for the most part. On the way to Ellingwood, we did have to cross a few snowfields, but they were only about 6 feet wide in the places where we crossed. We did not have ice axes or crampons or any ice/snow gear at all. bbass11   2014-06-13  0     Edit Delete 
2014-06-07  North Ridge via South Zapata Creek  South Zapata Creek trail is clear all the way up to South Zapata Lake. Be prepared with crampons and axe if you‘re attempting C2. Alternate route C3 is 1/2 snow covered but doable. Firechap31   2014-06-10 1     Edit Delete 
2014-05-10  North Ridge via South Zapata Creek  Snow starting about a mile before the lake. Above treeline patchy but pretty snowed in by the time you reach the lake. C2 in great shape. Snow off and on from the saddle to the last ridge. Enough snow on the final push to keep it interesting. druid2112   2014-05-13 4  7    Edit Delete 
2014-02-16  South Face  We were able to drive 4 miles in from the highway on the Lake Como Road. I have a stock 4WD 4-Runner. There is snow and mud on the first flat section of road. We had to drive in the brush next to the road to avoid it. If you care about your car, you would stop at 8,800 feet. We continued to around 9,700 feet, but it beat my car up and I got some damage. Multiple difficult rocky sections where a spotter helps or having a modified 4WD would do the trick. Lake Como Shed is in good shape. We covered the door with a tarp that we brought. It is still there. Snowshoe and boot track to the summit. Multiple steep snow slopes in the upper basin. There was a lot of snow. The snow seemed stable. No obvious avalanche signs were identified, however, it was scary being in avalanche terrain. Mickeys Grenade   2014-02-17 4  1    Edit Delete 
2014-02-01  South Face  I drove 1 mile in from the highway with a stock 4WD on the Lake Como Road. People have been getting stuck on the snow covered road. There were tire tracks next to the road in the brush that I used. I stopped after a mile. I didn‘t want to push my luck in the dark. I car camped at 7,800 feet. Things went well all the way to the cabin at Lake Como. Above that there was a lot of wallowing trying to break trail. I made it to the Blue Lakes at 12,150, except everything was white and I couldn‘t see a thing. It was snowing hard and visibility was poor. I decided to turn around. There was more snow above Lake Como then I was expecting. It was a long tough day for me. I left the car at 3 a.m. and got back at 4:30 p.m. Mickeys Grenade   2014-02-02 4  4 1  Edit Delete 
2013-10-25  South Face  10/14 peak conditions report was about the same that we experienced today 10/25, 5" or so of solid snow above 12k, which turned to soft powder above 13k, at which point I found microspikes helpful; some waste deep post-holing above 13k when descending Ellingwood via a gully, quite unpleasant. It snowed on us most of the day. Road was snow covered and icy in spots above 11k as you enter the forest/shade. We had camped at 10k just before the steepest part of the road switchbacks up to the right. If we had gone another 0.25 miles or so and few hundred feet in elevation, then we would have found some more suitable space to park and camp. BrentRichter   2013-11-02  0     Edit Delete 
2013-10-05  Southwest Ridge  Totally dry. Some very small and inconsequential packs of snow on the SW ridge. All avoidable. The Lake Como approach is damp and muddy in a few places, but no big deal. stoopdude   2013-10-06  0     Edit Delete 
2012-09-19  Blanca and Ellingwood  Traversing from Little Bear to Blanca, then walking the saddle between Blanca and Ellingwood I experienced a minimal amount of snow on the ridge down Blanca. My dad and I experienced no snow as we started our ascent from the saddle to the summit of Ellingwood Point. Clean as a whistle back down the trail to Como Lake. CMCMG   2012-09-21  0     Edit Delete 
2012-06-05  Southwest Ridge  There was no snow anywhere on the route. This is a great route. When I finished I traversed to Blanca. Great day! Nelson   2012-06-06  0     Edit Delete 
2012-05-18  South Face  Climbing ellingwood from South Zapata Lake and took north (?) ridge to the summit. Snow forces some harder moves but nothing was icy and nothing got above class four. Snow coulior to ridge was in great condition foxbox   2012-05-22  0     Edit Delete 
2011-06-26  Blanca and Ellingwood  Blanca and Ellingwood Point are clear of snow. Summer hiking conditions are here! mrschaible   2011-06-27  0     Edit Delete 
2011-03-26  South Face  Skied Ellingwood and had a contiuous line from the false summit (bump), right before the summit. Parked at 8,800‘ and hiked up the road to reach snow near 10,300‘. Skinned the remaining road and all the way to 13,300‘ where I switched to crampons and climbed unconsolidated, trap-crust snow to the ridge and left to the summit. Blanca has no snow for a ski descent and Ellingwood won‘t hold what it has much longer if the Sangres don‘t get some good spring snow, soon. BillMiddlebrook   2011-03-28 4     Edit Delete 
2011-01-23  South Face  Ellingwood‘s South Face holds a lot of unconsolidated sugar snow and facets, topped off by a thin, breakable crust layer. There was almost no sign whatsoever of slabs or consolidation of any kind above 12,800‘. Above 13,500‘ we found heavily rimed boulders and rocks protruding out of the snow pack, with unconsolidated sugar filling in the space between them. Due to the nature of the breakable crust, the unconsolidated snow, and the loose talus underneath it, it took our party an hour and a half to climb 500‘. Climbing and skiing on this face in its current condition is not recommended. See Dancesatmoonrise‘s Blanca conditions update for info on the Blue Lakes area and the Lake Como Road. benners   2011-01-27 2     Edit Delete 

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