Peak(s):  Mt. Belford  -  14,197 feet
Mt. Oxford  -  14,153 feet
Date Posted:  07/04/2007
Modified:  07/18/2007
Date Climbed:   07/03/2007
Author:  Gabe K
 Belford & Oxford Combo   

Yesterday I hiked up Mt. Yale, and today I felt good enough for Mt. Belford and Mt. Oxford. I started at 5:30am and was quickly greated by numerous columbine along the trail. I came across a cabin by 6:20am. Shortly after the cabin I saw bighorn sheep across the gully on a large talus field. I started the switchbacks at the base of Belford ar about 6:40am and made it to the saddle at 8:00am. There was a family of whistling marmots greating me at the saddle. Marmots always seem to amuse me, they are always scurring about waving their tails as they go. I reached the summit of Belford by 8:15am, rested until 8:45am, then headed for Mt. Oxford. I got to Oxford at 9:30am and noticed a group of ptarmigans, which was AWESOME! I have never seen ptarmigans before, and they were a lot of fun to watch. They blended in perfectly with their surroundings. I watched them for a bit and view the spectacular views all around me. The mountains were amazing! I would have to say one of the better views that I have had on top of a mountain. The view rivaled that of the San Juans. Realizing the time, I started heading back, because I was on a time schedule to pick up some friends who were section hiking the CDT, and they told me that they would probably be getting of the trail near Missouri Gulch at around 1 or 2pm. I got back to my car by 12:40 in the afternoon, which gave me a moment to cool my feet off in the stream below the bridge. The trail was incredibly well maintained, and in good shape. This was one of the better 14er hikes that I have experienced, the wildlife, wildflowers, and the hike were all a great experience.

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