| Geneva Mountain via North Ridge
Geneva Mountain - 12,335'
Trailhgead: Guanella Pass - Duck Lake Road Closure (From Grant to the south.)
Stats: 6.6 miles, 1,950'
Thought I would do a quick write-up on this little peak in response to all the posts asking about "close to Denver" and "relatively easy and quick" peaks that people seem to ask about a lot.
Geneva Mountain is a 12er and is one of the 18 ranked Mount Evans Wilderness peaks. In summer, the peak would be pretty simple. In winter, it gives you a bit more challenge.
Planned on hiking Rosalie and Royal the day before, but woke up not feeling well on Saturday. Decided to take the weekend off instead, but of course that never seems to happen. Slept in on Sunday until 8:30 (!!!) then drove to the southern closure of Guanella Pass with the dog. (Picked up a hitchhiker on the way, allowed for some "interesting" conversation.) Started out from the TH at a nice early start of 10:30 AM. Left the road immediately and started up the STEEP slope straight east from the parking area aiming for Pt. 11970. Definitely steeper than I planned, and the 1-2' of snow didn't help at all. Eventually we broke treeline and gained the ridge. I ditched the snowshoes here and started heading SE along the ups and downs of the ridge towards Geneva Mountain. The ridge reminded me of a mini Hoosier Ridge - not too difficult, but long and bumpy.
Reached the summit around 12:30 and relaxed for a bit. Almost the entire route of this trip offered spectacular views of the Mount Evans area. We reversed our route with the ups and downs until we reached the snowshoe stash. I decided to continue north in an effort to descend an easier way than I ascended. Didn't make a lot of difference, still got caught up in steep terrain and snow covered deadfall. I would recommend anyone following this route to start and finish from the actual Guanella Pass. It will add an extra 2 miles RT, subtract about 300' of gain, but offer easier terrain and no deadfall.
Reached my parking spot around 2:30, a nice 4 hour trip. Easy access, great views, and the opportunity for a late start. Nice day out.
Southern Guanella Pass closure conditions as of 01-08-2012.
Ascending the steep, snowy slopes aiming for the ridge.
Reaching the ridge, looking back at Square Top Mountain and Duck Lake.
Sawtooth and Bierstadt from the ridge.
Looking ahead at the ridge to Geneva Mountain. (Summit not visible.)
Rufus and Square Top Mountain.
The major bump along the ridge.
Views to the west.
Lost Creek Wilderness from the summit of Geneva Mountain.
Kataka Mountain from the summit.
Square Top standing proud.
"Trenching it" back down to Guanella Pass Road.
Road on the way down.
Map of the day.
Elevation profile of the day.