Buying Gear?  Click Here
Buying gear? Please use these links to help 14ers.com:

More info...

Other ways to help...
 Peak(s):  Weston Pk  -  13,572 feet
Ptarmigan Pk  -  13,739 feet
 Post Date:  07/19/2010 Modified: 07/20/2010
 Date Climbed:   07/16/2010
 Posted By:  BobbyFinn

 Weston and Ptarmigan Combination   

Mountains: Weston Peak and Ptarmigan Peak
Trailhead: Weston Pass (2WD ok)
Time: ~2.5 hrs

My wife was out of town and I wanted to hit up some 13ers to keep myself in shape for the rest of our summer hiking plans. I left work in Denver at about 3:30 pm and headed straight for the trailhead at Weston Pass (from the 285 side). Weston Pass is 2WD friendly, though there might have been one rough area where a regular passenger car driver might have had to pick a good line to get by. I think I was hiking by 6:30 ish. The weather was blue-bird so I wasn't worried about a storm.

There was a recent thread asking for info on this mountain so I thought I'd share my experience.

Image
Well-marked trailhead.


I followed the old double track road in the above picture until it ended and then I started ascending the slope, making my own switchbacks as I went. Here's a view of the slope.

Image
The steep slope - it isn't too bad, but it is steep.


And a closer view of the terrain.

Image
A closer look at the slope - there is no trail (that I saw)


And here is the view down toward the trailhead from about 1/2 way up. The slope is stable and mostly grass with some small dirt sections and rocks here and there. It's not a bad way to go up a mountain, but it will give your legs a workout.

Image
Looking down from about 1/2 way up the slope.


Up on top of the ridge, turn right for Weston Peak or left for Ptarmigan.

Now... I had studied the route and I had a quad map with me, but when I got to the top of the ridge I was unpleasantly surprised to see just how far away the peak was - or at least how far it seemed to be. However, it didn't take long to get there.

The route between where I got up to the top of the ridge and over to the flatter wider area just under Weston's summit was narrow, but the hiking didn't exceed class 2. In fact, the rock was a nice change from the grassy ascent. There is some exposure in this section, but it is not bad.

Image
Wait - It's way over there? What? Are you serious?


Just below the summit - a lot of white rock.

Image
Summit rocks


Here's the view over to Ptarmigan once back over the rocky ridge from Weston.

Image
Back across the rocky ridge looking at Ptarmigan


The terrain between the two peaks is grassy. I didn't see any trail, but the route is obvious.

Image
Looking back toward(ish) Weston, this is the terrain between the two peaks.


Here is a closer view of Ptarmigan. It was an easy hike from Weston to here.

Image
Ptarmigan


The final bit up to Ptarmigan was a talus/boulder hop. It wasn't bad and the rock was pretty stable.

Image
Almost to the summit


Summit view.

Image
Summit view


For the descent, I hiked a descending traverse from below the talus leading to Ptarmigan's summit back toward the double-track "road" that I followed to begin the hike. It was pretty easy to find, even as it was getting dark.

Image
Descent


This is a nice, quick hike with great views of the Sawatch and Mosquito ranges.



Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
 


  • Comments or Questions

   Using your forum id/password. Not registered? Click Here


Caution: The information contained in this report may not be accurate and should not be the only resource used in preparation for your climb. Failure to have the necessary experience, physical conditioning, supplies or equipment can result in injury or death. 14ers.com and the author(s) of this report provide no warranties, either express or implied, that the information provided is accurate or reliable. By using the information provided, you agree to indemnify and hold harmless 14ers.com and the report author(s) with respect to any claims and demands against them, including any attorney fees and expenses. Please read the 14ers.com Safety and Disclaimer pages for more information.

© 2014 14ers.com®, 14ers Inc.