Ascent of Popes Bluffs on 2017-10-18

Climber: William Musser

Other People:Solo Ascent
Only Party on Mountain
Date:Wednesday, October 18, 2017
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Popes Bluffs
    Elevation:6720 ft / 2048 m

Ascent Trip Report

Pete's TR is spot on. I parked in the main paved spot off Vindicator Drive. Then found there were many social trails and use trails well beyond the marked ones on the maps and google. You can follow a use trail up the saddle all class 1 perhaps 2 near the top and then 2 to the true summit. Then exploring the ridge line there is some very steep but sticky slabs of class 3 that are fun and frankly one side of the ridge is just like hiking the hogback ridges along Dinosaur Ridge near Morrison only much closer to the ground and near houses. The other side of the ridge has this gray steep easy to grip slabs that are decent class 3. But as others have said there are many use trails that run along the rock ridge and you can either traverse the entire ridge with plenty of class 2 and 3 or hike along the side on class 1.
Surprisingly more fun that I expected for a dinky little formation in a public park.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:185 ft / 55 m
    Total Elevation Loss:185 ft / 56 m
    Round-Trip Distance:1.1 mi / 1.8 km
    Quality:4 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Scramble
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:140 ft / 42 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 120 ft / 37 m; Extra: 20 ft / 6m
    Loss on way in:20 ft / 6 m
    Distance:0.5 mi / 0.8 km
    Route:main trail to herd trail ridgeline
    Start Trailhead:parking lot  6600 ft / 2011 m
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:165 ft / 50 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 120 ft / 37 m; Extra: 45 ft / 13m
    Gain on way out:45 ft / 13 m
    Distance:0.6 mi / 1 km
    End Trailhead:parking lot  6600 ft / 2011 m
Ascent Part of Trip: COLO-1

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Pulpit Rock2017-10-18 a330 ft / 101 m
2Pulpit Rock2017-10-18 b162 ft / 49 m
3Pulpit Rock2017-10-18 c15 ft / 5 m
4Popes Bluffs2017-10-18 d185 ft / 56 m
5The Mesa2017-10-18 e180 ft / 55 m
6Castle Rock2017-10-18 f360 ft / 110 m
Total Trip Gain: 1232 ft / 376 m    Total Trip Loss: 982 ft / 299 m

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