A Beautiful Day
(In the Elks)

14 Jul 2007 - by T Colorado

Unnamed 13,631' is located along the same ridge as Pyramid and Thunder Pyramid (to be specific, it is sandwiched between Unnamed 13,722 and Len Shoemaker Ridge). We hadn't been up here for a number of years ... the last time being when we climbed Thunder Pyramid and Unnamed 13,722. The route description is basic ... from the day parking area, we hiked up the trail, taking a left up the West Maroon Creek drainage. After crossing West Maroon Creek, we continued on the trail for a bit through dense willows until we came to a small clearing and a rock cairn on the ground on our left. We headed uphill here staying above the trees and angling left until we saw our first cairn. We would be accompanied by the cairns for most of the day. We followed several different gullies until we topped out on the beautiful green, floral filled bench. We continued on grassy slopes to the head of the basin, and then contoured southeast to the saddle northeast of 13,631. The route up to the saddle is a bit tenuous (loose gravel, loose rock, large boulders). We stuck to the larger rocks which were much more stable, and headed steeply up.

At the saddle, we dropped our packs and took the short climb up the ridge. There were two 4th class moves (one on the right of the ridge, one on the left of the ridge) before popping out on the summit. Much to our surpise, there was a register (put up there by the Roach's). This is the first register we've seen on a 13'er this year. We didn't stay long, making our way back down to the ridge to our packs and the celebratory beer.

This was a great day with incredible views of the Bells. We could see people on top of North Maroon and heard large rockfall two different times during the day from that area. The flowers are in full force and fragrance. 12 miles roundtrip according to Garratt and Martin. When we got back down to the West Maroon Creek trail, we must have passed 40 people (in different groups) starting the four pass loop trip. Here's to solitude! Happy Trails!


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