Monday seemed like an ideal opportunity to knock Mt. Sherman off the list. The trailhead is easy to get to and the hike is short and sweet. My dad and I started from the Iowa Gulch trailhead just east of Leadville at about 7am. We parked at the end of the mining road where large concrete dividers mark the end of the maintained road.
Looking back toward the trailhead about a quarter mile into the hike
After crossing the initial bowl we begin to climb toward the saddle between Mt. Sherman and Mt. Sheridan.
Where the trail begins to climb up to the saddle between Mt. Sherman and Mt. Sheridan
From the trailhead to the summit there are constant reminders that this is a mining zone. From the debris and the old mining shacks to the abandoned power poles
There are constant reminders on this trail that you are in a mining areato the newly constructed massive power lines that cross the range to the North.
As we climb toward the saddle the wind becomes increasingly stiff. The temperature is 51 degrees but the wind chill makes it seem much colder. I wore my fleece jacket the whole time and I usually have to take it off as soon as I begin to climb. The wind increasingly became more intrusive and progressed from a slight distraction to a hellish nuisance.
insane wind This picture does no justice to the wind. Anything loose on our clothes or backpacks zinged back and forth and created a constant humming vibration.
As we began to climb toward the summit from the saddle the wind was so fierce that it seemed like it was propelling us forward. That was while it was at our backs. As we climbed the ridge the wind battered us from the west. There were a few odd pockets along the ridge where the wind didn't rage, but mainly from just before the saddle to the summit it pounded us. It kind of made me laugh because of how maligned this peak is for being so easy. The wind added an element of challenge.
We briefly saw one mountain goat, but he disappeared before we got close enough to snap a picture.
From the summit the views are pretty awesome across Leadville toward Mt. Massive, Mt. Elbert & La Plata. To the North it is easy to decipher Bross, Lincoln, Democrat & Cameron.
We climbed down the east side of the ridge and enjoyed our snack and took in the view.
I really enjoyed the hike despite, and probably partially because of, the wind.