October 17, 2015
Northeast Ridge, Standard Route
It was going to be a beautiful autumn weekend, so why not knock down one more peak before the snow flies to generate much needed funds for the Boys and Girls Club and The First Tee?
San Luis Peak is located in the San Juan Mountain range in the Gunnison National Forest. I departed Denver Friday afternoon around 4 PM to make the long drive out to the Stewart Creek trailhead. After about a 5 hour drive, with the final 45 miles on a lonesome and empty 4×4 road, I arrived at the trailhead. The moon was fully waned which made for a very dark night providing an incredible view of the stars! Multiple shooting stars soared across the sky while coyotes howled in the background. It was a pretty incredible night.
Camping in the Jeep…so much easier!
I started hiking around 7:15 AM. This hike is fairly easy, in fact, possibly the easiest 14er I have climbed thus far. It took around 4 hours to the summit and 2.5 hours to get back to the trailhead. The only sign of life I saw was a bird fairly near the summit. I found this odd until I got back to the trailhead and a couple hunters pulled up and asked me if I had seen a moose. They had seen one the day prior and had been chasing it, which probably scared most other animals away too.
The sun is on its way.
On the way home, I noticed part of the 4×4 trail I drove at night was an old stage coach route. Much easier driving a Jeep and not trying to get a horse and buggy through these mountains!