Ascent of Mount Yale on 2009-07-12

Climber: David Foster

Others in Party:Vaune
Date:Sunday, July 12, 2009
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Mount Yale
    Elevation:14196 ft / 4326 m

Ascent Trip Report

GPS lost power near summit, so stats unreliable
Topo: 4213' Ascent/Descent 4.25mi Asc
Mapsource: Ascent 540-900am Descent 1000-1240 4.3mi Asc 4.1mi Dsc (fall-line from near summit)
Vaune and I hunted for informal camping near TH, but found only ON the road, (and later, 100s of feet up the trail). Poor spot West of TH, but rocky. Settled for Collegiate Peak USFS campground. It was Full, but we found one empty, overdue site. Proprietor, Jim, was visiting sites, and he said we could have it for $15 or $30 if from Texas. It turned out to be the nicest site in the area, with neighbors along ways away, and creekside. Outhouses clean and nearby. Water pumps appeared to be out of order.
Rained the night before, stayed asleep beyond 430 planned time, finally up at 530am. At the trailhead by 540am on up.
Initial few hundred yards were very rock surface, reminiscent of Shavano, but quicky turned into nice dirt trail, with lots of trees. Was surprisingly moist to tree line, with lots of DF and Spruce and ground vegetaion. Stream crossing on log bridges.Treeline all the way to 12000'. Trail became quite steep, but not badly eroded. Going up the West Face, we were in the suns shadow all the way to the summit ridge, making for a very nice cool ascent. On summit ridge, definitely became boulder hoping and climbing, but never very exposed... a helmet might have been nice for a fall.
On the summit 9am, found 2 friendly college guys from Denver, may have been the days first ascenders Fabulous view 360deg, esp. saw Harvard and Columbia just to the north, but didn't get to identify what I assumed would be all the Sawatch Peaks. Princeton visible to S, and what might have been Antero. Twin Towers to the NW turned out to be the Three Apostles near Huron Peak.
Returned about half way down Ridge, when noticed a trail going directly down the fall-line, using the plunge-step for speed, and minimal foot pain. This may have been more along Roaches Route, which was more direct, perhaps before there was a formal trail. Also, Trails illustrated deviated slightly from 14ers route, perhaps the planned trail vs. actually installed. We rejoined the main trail as the slope lessened.
Many people ascending as we descended. Even met a discouraged looking group of guys at about 11500 at 1200 noon, who asked at what time we had started.
Summary Total Data
    Elevation Gain:4266 ft / 1300 m
    Distance:8.5 mi / 13.7 km
    Route:West Face
    Trailhead:Denny Creek TH  9930 ft / 3026 m
    Gear Used:
Ski Poles
    Weather:Cool, Breezy
Sunrise wind on ascent
Ascent Statistics
    Time Up:3 Hours 20 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Time Down:2 Hours 40 Minutes

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