Uncompahgre Peak (South Ridge Route)

Going to start this off by saying how much I love the San Juan mountain range!  I have been neglecting 14ers in the San Juan’s this year though because its such a long drive to get to any of them!  I picked these 2 solely off of how awesome Uncompahgre looked in pictures, its such a unique looking 14er, it towers above everything else around it and has a very distinguished volcano-esque look.  The Wetterhorn TH is only about 20-30 minutes from the Uncompahgre TH which was a huge selling point for me as I was trying to stick with my multiple peaks per day trend.Sunrise
Once again fueled by a mountain sunrise.
Uncompahgre sunrise!
I ended up parking on the 2wd road so the RT for me was about 16 miles.  In hindsight I could have easily drove all the way to the Nellie Creek TH cutting that trip in half.  As soon as you turn onto the Nellie Creek 4wd road there is a really sketchy section that I was not sure I could make it over with my Forrester. But that little section of roughness was probably the hardest part of the road.  After the 4 mile grind up the road I hopped on the only standard route there is up Uncompahgre.  The trail zig zags through a valley below the summit until you eventually gain the ridge to start the final push to the summit.  You get a tiny bit of class 3 scrambling along the back side of Uncompahgre which was a nice change from the beaten path. Uncompahgre Class 3
Mix it up with a little class 3Summit
Vertigo inducing cliff!Summit
Don’t Look down!
Once on the summit you are presented with vertigo inducing views of the surrounding valley. If I had the balls to parasail this would be the 14er to do it on!  I did not spend a ton of time on the summit as I had plans to meet up with a fellow 14ers.com forum member to tackle Wetterhorn Peak.  If I had to recommend a 14 to someone who has never done one before Uncompahgre would be it, it has the classic 14er feel, you get a little bit of class 3, an awesome summit, and its not an extremely long distance if you park at the 4wd TH.

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