Peak:  Keller Mountain (13er)
 Route:  East Ridge from Rock Creek
 Range:  Gore
 Posted By:  supranihilest
 Date of Info:  10/04/2020
 Date Posted:  10/04/2020

More involved than expected. Bring a helmet. We took the Rock Creek Trail for somewhere around 2 miles before heading straight north up steep, forested slopes to the ridge crest. There we ran into a trail that runs most of the length of the ridge to treeline. Shortly past treeline the rock begins and doesn't relent until you've summited and returned to treeline. The initial section is just boulders. Eventually the ridge narrows. Early on you can scramble across the crest of traverse on the south side on dirt and boulders. As you make your way towards the prominent point on the ridge note an obvious notch with tall cairn on it below the top on the south side. It's easiest to traverse below and around the point to this notch and there's no need to summit the point. From this notch there's a down climb of about 100 feet, the first real scrambling of the route. It goes at Class 2+/Class 3. The rock deteriorates greatly from this point and beyond. Scramble down and then traverse across several gullies and ribs. Test everything as it's all loose. If you return to the crest too soon you'll be forced back down by much harder and more exposed scrambling. When you run into a big block of white rock on the ridge you'll have to down climb again and then traverse a narrow, exposed dirt ledge to a steep dirt gully. This is just below the final point on the ridge, and you'll have avoided most of the much harder scrambling by staying lower where possible. Scramble up this gully (extremely loose Class 3) and walk to the summit, which is the farther lump on the ridge. Though you can go towards Bighorn Pass and down a steep scree/talus slope to the lakes below we went back across the ridge, following the trail where it picks up at treeline and taking it all the way to the Gore Trail. I would not recommend this. The trail was an absolute nightmare of deadfall several miles long. We would have had an easier time descending the steep slope we ascended from the Rock Creek Trail.

 Comments or Questions

San Juans?
10/04/2020 22:12
Did you move on to the Gores? Dang, I won't run into you this fall!


San Juan
10/05/2020 09:51
Yeah, Whiley and I are likely done with the San Juan for the season. We both had to return home for various reasons and since she's now returned to her teaching job she only gets weekends to climb. With the San Juan being at least six hours away it didn't make sense to stay out there. At least in the case of the Gore, which is much closer to home for her, there's practically unlimited scrambling! These peaks are real beat downs!


10/06/2020 15:00
The approaches for the gores are such a grunt. Have fun!! Let's see what's the next summit I see your name in, the latest one was UN 13,069!

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

© 2021®, 14ers Inc.