| Evans via Guanella Pass via Grey Wolf/Spalding drainage
A few weeks ago my wife and I did Mt. Bierstadt and the Sawtooth. My wife got sick, and we didn't finish Mt. Evans. On our way down the gully, heading to the willows, we saw two women coming up over the ridge to the right (as you look down). Their boots were dry, and they said it was not nearly as steep as the gully. I asked on this site how to get to this route. Jim Davies gave us the following answer, "Take the Bierstadt trail to just past the big lake (before the creek crossing), turn left and climb over the little hill, continue north through a potentially soggy low section, go over another hill, turn left (back toward the pass) to circle 100 feet or so back around the end of another soggy section, and you'll find the beginning of a dry trail that will lead you up to the Grey Wolf/Spalding drainage (not the gully)." This information proved to be very accurate and helped us in having a very enjoyable and dry hike. On the previous hike, I was up to my knees in muck in the willows.
Below, these guys were on the trail, and we were close enough to pet them. We did respect their space and gave them time to move.
As we approached the peak, the parking lot was empty! And for a brief period of time, we had the summit to ourselves. That was very nice!
The trip down was amazing. It provided great views of the Sawtooth!
Below, you can see the easy work we had before us. This is the Grey Wolf/Spalding drainage where you avoid the steep gully.
The picture below shows a trail that is high and dry; to the left you can see the willows.
The next one is my favorite picture yet. I didn't notice the cross made by the jet contrails until I got home.
Another great shot of Bierstadt and the Sawtooth! The trail is still high and dry!
After getting back to the car, my boots were dry and Mt. Evans was complete. The trip was 10.3 miles. After doing both routes, I would take the Grey Wolf/Spalding drainage route again!
This was my favorite summit yet!
The red tracks show our route, the black goes through the willows and the gully.
Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):