Collegiate Peaks High Adventure 2011 – Day 4

Find the rest of the week’s trip reports here:

Day 4

Hartenstein Lake – Yale trail junction
1.8 miles
900′ descent
drop packs
Yale summit
5.6 miles round trip
3400′ climb
Yale trail junction – Denny Creek TH
1.2 miles
800′ descent
Pick up shuttle car
Dinner in Buena Vista
Drive to Winfield  (~30 miles)

Today would have a little bit of everything.  We broke camp and hauled our packs a couple of miles down the trail where we stashed them in some trees and made ready for the Mount Yale climb after sending Henry on his way.

Hartenstein to Mount Yale trail

Mount Yale


We were in store for a great day weather wise, and the mood was good in the group after having our fill of great food the night before.

Time to head out again

The routine of waking up in a tent, breaking camp, and getting out on the trail was a familiar one now.  I was amazed at how well everyone was holding up and excited to think that we might actually pull this off.

Easy downhill going made for a nice warmup

Once we switched to our day packs we were all business for a while as we motored up the steep climb.  Knowing that we had a long day ahead helped to spur our pace, as well as the thought of pizza waiting for us in Buena Vista!

All smiles now

When we climbed above treeline the massive views opened up to us once again.  By now the landscape was very familiar to us and we could easily pick out the surrounding peaks and other landmarks.

Loving the climb

Ben cresting the ridge

Tyler and Malcolm

A little boulder-hopping (credit: Tyler Lofgren)

Cool cairn

Bryant and Corbin

After a final pitch through the boulders we topped out and enjoyed the second summit of our trip.

Made it!


We all passed around Tyler’s phone again (his was the only one to get signal) and made the requisite celebratory calls and text messages.  Different world we live in these days…

Malcolm and Ben

Made all the 14er ascents in my Merrell Trail Gloves

Mount Yale - 14,196'

All too soon, it was time to start the trip down.  The hiking was enjoyable as we had an immense landscape sprawled out in front of us.

Tyler on the switchbacks

Looking back towards Ice Mountain and yesterday's route

The heat really started to build the lower we went.  I ran out of water and was super happy to refill my bottle once we made it back to where we stashed the packs.

Just a mile to go

From there it was about a mile and a half to the trailhead where we had dropped a car on Monday.  It seemed a LOT longer than that, but we made it out just fine.  Then we had to go grab the other car from our starting location before we could head into town for some much needed grub.

Pizza Works - Mmmm...

We destroyed 3 large pizzas in short order and then made our way north up the highway for our final campsite at the ghost town of Winfield.

A little leg soaking was in order

Our filtering system worked well

A puddle of alpenglow

Winfield is a great place to camp.  You are surrounded by high peaks all around and there is a nice meadow and lots of space.  It is also the 50 mile turnaround point for the Leadville 100 trail race.  We hit the sack early in anticipation of a 4:30 wake up and our biggest day yet.

Goodnight Winfield, see you in a month

Posted on August 18, 2011, in stuff. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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