Oh to be back at 14,000 FT again! This nugget of an idea was all Kim’s we originally had a long run planned in the front range but as soon as Kim planted the 14er seed in my head I was on board. After a week of vacation in Arizona bagging peaks named after Pokémon we decided to end the week of vacation with some thin Colorado mountain air. I have done many 14ers in the summer but this was my first attempt a 14er in calendar Winter.
The day started bright and early at the dino lots. We ditched the little red civic and cruised up to Georgetown. The road is closed about 2 miles below the standard summer Bierstadt trail head. After about 10 minutes of talking ourselves out of the 90 degree Subaru we strapped on the snowshoes and were on our way. The first part of Bierstadt in the Winter is an uneventful snowshoe up the road. We did not snowshoe all the way to the summer trail head. We cut off one switchback below the summer trail head and snowshoed across the lake and eventually linked up with the standard summer route.
All day we could see another person off in the distance. We ended up following his snowshoe trail most of the way to the summit. Honestly I was happy to have a somewhat broken trail, I really dislike wallowing in boob deep snow! Once we synced up with the standard route we ditched the snowshoes and went with the fast and light plan.
In my opinion once we were on the standard route it felt like a summer day on Bierstadt, maybe even a little easier. Well the way back down is easier because you can butt slide.
The final push to the summit was a bit slippery, but we eventually made it. It is incredibly rare for Bierstadt to not have 20+ people on the summit, its honestly the 6 flags of 14ers. We took full advantage of that and chilled on the summit, ate our snacks and chatted with the dude that broke trail for us.
After a quick photo shoot we started our butt slide back down to our snowshoes. Once we reached our snowshoes we strapped them on and extreme snowshoed all the way back out to the car.
Its pretty hard to believe but this is the first 14er me and Kim tackled together, it only took us a year and a half! Here’s to a summer of many more 14,000 Ft adventures!