North Eolus - South Ridge
Climbing mountains is dangerous! Please read the Mountaineering Safety Page and make sure you have a map+compass and can use them effectively. A GPS or cell phone can be very helpful with navigation but you should still be able to use a map+compass in case your device stops working.
(WINTER) HOLD ON! If you don't have much high-elevation, winter climbing experience, be careful in your planning and take a partner. Even the "easy" 14ers (Quandary, Sherman, Grays & Torreys) can be deadly in winter.
|Difficulty:|| Class 3 |
|Total Gain:||200 feet|
|RT Length:||0.20 miles additional when climbing Mt. Eolus|
|USGS Quad.:||Storm King Peak|
|County Sheriff:||La Plata: 970-247-1157
|National Forest:||San Juan|
Drive to Durango and follow signs to the Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. It's near McDonald's and has a large parking area nearby. Buy a ticket for the train that stops at Needleton and ride the train 2.5 hours (~30 miles) to the Needleton stop. The train will drop you off next to a suspension bridge that crosses the Animas River. From here, it's a 6 mile hike to reach Chicago Basin. Note: you can also take the train from Silverton and be dropped off at Needleton.
Taken from Windom Peak, Photo #1 shows the standard routes up Mt. Eolus and North Eolus. To reach North Eolus, follow the Mt. Eolus - Northeast Ridge Route to the connecting ridge between Eolus and North Eolus - Photo #2. Scramble up to the ridge ( 37.62430° N, -107.62068° W). If you're climbing Eolus first, cross the Catwalk, summit Eolus and return to the notch in the connecting ridge - Photo #3 and Photo #4.
Scramble up the North Eolus' south ridge on grippy rock - Photo #5 and Photo #6. This is a very short scramble. As you approach the summit, the pitch increases but the difficulty does not exceed Class 3. In fact, it's pretty easy Class 3. Once on the summit ( ° N, ° W) you'll have excellent views of Eolus, Sunlight and Windom - Photo #8 and Photo #9.
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