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Lackawanna standard route help

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Lackawanna standard route help

Postby BillMiddlebrook » Tue Oct 02, 2012 4:44 pm

I could use a little help with this one. I've finally added the "standard" route for Lackawanna on 13ers.com but could use some feedback from anyone who's climbed the route in case I missed an easier ascent to tree line. I did find a continuous trail all the way to tree line (see maps in route) but it was sometimes a bit hard to follow. On the descent, I spent a couple of hours poking around below tree line but found no other good lines.

Any feedback is appreciated.

Thanks!
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Re: Lackawanna standard route help

Postby Matt Lemke » Tue Oct 02, 2012 4:57 pm

You might mention the easiest route in winter is the south slopes starting right from the highway 82 up the treeless slope to the south ridge seen on this map
Image

Its also the route roach describes
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Re: Lackawanna standard route help

Postby BillMiddlebrook » Tue Oct 02, 2012 5:16 pm

Good point. It would certainly help to remind people of better winter options.
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Re: Lackawanna standard route help

Postby Kiefer » Tue Oct 02, 2012 5:38 pm

Bill,
You're not alone in this. I've had the same problem while descending Lackawanna(I took a different path on the way up).
I got so damn frustrated with trying to find the 'trail', I ended up just bushwhacking straight down through the forest back to the
North Fork TH. I've come across maps that shows a trail, it looked more like road rements to me while there, but never could find
anything that resembled a trail, even a primitive one.
I freaking hate that mountain. :evil:

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Re: Lackawanna standard route help

Postby BillMiddlebrook » Tue Oct 02, 2012 5:56 pm

that must have been a pleasant bushwhack
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Re: Lackawanna standard route help

Postby CarpeDM » Wed Oct 03, 2012 1:19 am

In early July 2011, I tried the Roachs' Casco North Ridge route (10.4) with forum member thevagabond -- also covered by Greenhouseguy. We had similar route-finding questions that ate up a lot of time, so we ended up turning around at about 12k feet due to weather. Our route closely matches yours up to the cabin, and we didn't have much problem to that point. Above that, it was a confusing mess of trail segments, bushwhacking, and dicey creek crossings. One big problem was getting to the northeast trending branch of the creek. It was well guarded by willows. We found a pretty good trail that ascended to the east and south -- away from where we wanted to go, but we followed it a ways hoping it might get us above the willows and we could then curl back. Just over 11,800 we had had enough and bushwhacked straight north to the creek, crossed the first creek branch, found the trail that headed up the northeast-trending branch of the creek, and then the skies opened up on us.

Incidentally, another big time-waster was just crossing the creek down near the trailhead. We tried wading in a couple of places, but the water was just too high and too cold (still lots of run-off). We ended up driving back down the road 0.9 mile and using the Roachs' alternate 10.4v2 beginning.

Not much help really, just commiserating.
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Re: Lackawanna standard route help

Postby geojed » Wed Oct 03, 2012 1:52 am

On my "big day" in the sawatch Lackawanna was top priority to get because I did not want to have to come back to get this one. There's no easy or interesting way up it. When I came down from 13660 I just wandered down through the trees straight towards 82. Amazingly I didn't get cliffed out.

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Re: Lackawanna standard route help

Postby d_baker » Wed Oct 03, 2012 5:18 am

I've hiked Lackawanna twice using the Lackawanna Gulch approach and I don't think it's that bad of a route. In Bill's image #4 (at the cabin), we went straight to continue into Lackawanna Gulch.
There is not a continuous trail farther on once out of treeline, but the path of least resistance through some willows will break through to open terrain and is straight forward from there.

Bill, nice work on the route description although I have not done that particular line.

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Re: Lackawanna standard route help

Postby kmensch » Wed Oct 03, 2012 1:11 pm

I did the route shown on the topo in an earlier post in the summer and think it is a good summer route. There is no real trail through the gulch, but I found it refreshing that there wasn't a wide path to mindlessly follow. There is some bushwhacking either through the willows and young aspen in the lower gulch, or through the forest filled with downed trees. It's short and sweet, gaining about 3,800' in about 1.5 miles. It's a great route to do in the late evening.

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