Dyer Mountain
West Ridge
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Difficulty:
 Class 4 
Trailhead:Iowa Gulch
Start:11,680 feet
Summit:13,855 feet
Total Gain:2,250 feet
RT Length:4.5 miles
Author:BillMiddlebrook
Updated:1/2015
Weather:NOAA Forecast
Conditions:52 reports
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? (WINTER) HOLD ON! If you don't have much high-elevation, winter climbing experience, be careful in your planning and take a partner. All 14er routes are more difficult and more dangerous in winter.

Trailhead

Take US 24 through downtown Leadville to the southern end of town. Turn east onto Monroe Street and drive 0.2 miles. Turn right (south) on Lake County 2 (Toledo St). Follow CR 2 (paved) for approximately 3.8 miles to a fork in the road. Turn left on a 2WD dirt road and continue 3.0 miles up into Iowa Gulch to the trailhead. A total of 7 miles from US 24 in Leadville. The trailhead is unmarked - park along the road. If you're hiking Mts Sherman or Sheridan, locate the trail (below the edge of the road) as it heads toward the creek under the power lines.

Route

There's no official trailhead or parking area for this climb - just follow the directions for the Iowa Gulch trailhead and park near 11,650' on the road. Approx. parking coordinates: 39.22984 North, -106.19822 West. Leave the road and hike northeast up into the Dyer Amphitheater where you'll get a look at Dyer's west ridge - 1. As you ascend into the Dyer Amphitheater, hike along the center of the rocky drainage - 2. Gain easier ground above some cliffs ( 3), walk past a small lake ( 4) and continue toward the north end of the amphitheater ( 5) where the terrain gets more difficult - 6. Ascend the scree slope at the north end of the amphitheater to reach the saddle between West Dyer Mountain and Dyer Mountain - 7.

To add West Dyer Mountain to your route, turn left and walk 0.25 mile up West Dyer's east ridge to reach the summit, then return to the saddle - 8. Now, things get more serious. Walk east over to the base of Dyer's west ridge and the terrain quickly changes to stacked, broken rock - 9. Carefully follow the ridge crest toward the first, towering point on the ridge - 10. Climb a small, Class 4 chimney ( 11) and scramble up through some Class 3 rock ( 12) to reach ~13,000', just below the point - 13.

Angle right and bypass this point to the south of the ridge crest - 14. Still on the south side of the ridge, ascend approx. 200' of elevation and go around a small rock face to find a rock-filled passage which brings you back toward the ridge crest - 15 and 16. Back on the ridge, scramble up and down over several jagged points between 13,200' and 13,500' - 17, 18, 19 and 20.

Near 13,600', some scrambling remains but the most difficult terrain is behind you. Continue along the ridge ( 21) and ascend a bump ( 22) to see... a false summit - 23. Hike/scramble up the false summit ( 24 and 25) to finally see Dyer's true summit - 26. Descend slightly before climbing the final pitch to the top - 27 and 28. For the descent, use Dyer's Southeast Slopes route which will return you to the Iowa Gulch road.

Notes

This route holds loose rock on steep terrain and should not be taken lightly.
#1 #2 #3 #4 #5 #6 #7 #8 #9 #10 #11 #12 #13 #14 #15 #16 #17 #18 #19 #20 #21 #22 #23 #24 #25 #26 #27 #28
Topo

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