Route: Southeast Ridge Trailhead: Fourmile Creek / Leavick (Mt Sherman)
I climbed Dyer Mountain (13855 ft) and Gemini Peak (13951 ft) by way of Mount Sherman (14036) on Friday, 27 August 1999 (hope my boss doesn't start to wonder why I'm always sick on Fridays!). The trailhead and approach was Fourmile Creek, the same as that for Mount Sherman.
I started out at about 0730 with an overcast sky and unsettled weather. This the sixth week in a row like this. Is it just me or is the weather in the Colorado Mountains unusual this year? I started up the Mt Sherman trail and reached the summit at about 0830. After a brief stay on the summit, I descended to the saddle between Sherman and Gemini Peak's southern summit. A bit further up, there is a small saddle between the southern and northern (higher) summits of Gemini Peak which requires a bit more climbing to go over. I decided to try and bypass the saddle by traversing on the left (west) side of the southern subpeak. This turned out to be a mistake. After a few hundred yards of traversing very steep, unstable talus with a rather nasty runout below, I decided to climb up and over the southern subpeak. The going on the right (northeast side) was much easier.
I descended to the saddle between Gemini and Dyer and followed the ridge northwest. It had apparently rained quite a bit the night before so my butt got a little too familiar with the slippery talus a few times on the descent. The ridge across the bottom of the saddle is easy with a pretty well-beaten path, but it's also quite narrow in places. A few minutes later, I reached the top of Dyer at about 0930. The clouds were building rapidly so I decided not to stay long -- just long enough to sign the register. Apparently Dyer does not get allot of traffic. The summit register showed 8/14/99 as the last recorded climb.
On the way back, I went ahead and climbed Gemini. It's only about a hundred feet or so up from the small saddle beneath it, however it is very steep and requires a bit of steadying with the hands. After Gemini I decided to get the most out of my workout and rejoin civilization, so I climbed back over Sherman to meet the train of people coming up. It is possible to avoid climbing back over Sherman by contouring around to the east. However, you only save about 200 feet and you have travel quite a ways east to do. The real advantage would have been to be able descend much farther east via the saddle between Sherman and White Ridge (without the benefit of trail, though).
I arrived at the car about 1150 just as the thunder began to rumble. There were still people just starting out from their cars!
Another great day in the mountains. I highly recommend this route. It's easy and scenic and it's great workout. You are above treeline for the entire trip so leave early! I also recommend not trying to bypass Gemini Peak's southern summit on the west side as I tried to. It's very steep and the talus is unstable. The extra hundred feet or so required to go over the small saddle between the Gemini summits is well worth the effort.
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