Colorado Rocky Mountains - Our Mt. Sherman Hike

My Friend Phil Ladden Hikes His First 14er In 30+ Years; Our Photos On June 24, 2010

Colorado Mountain Scenery

My good friend Phil Ladden is vacationing in Colorado this week. All year, Phil had stated that he would like to climb a Colorado 14er after a 30-year-long hiatus. Although he has climbed Pikes Peak many times as a teenager, his last 14er ascent happened in 1979!

Phil is a Colorado Native and has lived in our state for 40+ years, but three years ago, he moved to Phoenix, Arizona. This man is no slouch, but he ruefully admitted he hasn't exercised as well as he should and his desk job does no service to his 51-year-old body. This set the stage for today's challenge: Get Phil back on the summit of a 14er!

Among the many options for comparatively "easy" 14ers, we chose Mount Sherman, located in the Mosquito Range near the towns of Leadville, Alma and Fairplay. (I have already hiked this mountain in 2004, 2007 and 2011.) Below are three videos and 27 photos of our day. Enjoy the Colorado Rocky Mountain scenery!

Buena Vista, Colorado

Twitter: @stevegarufi
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Our Climb - Mt. Sherman (elevation 14,036 feet)
Colorado Mountains
Above is the view of Mt. Sheridan (left) and Mt. Sherman (right) as we drove on Park County Road 18, which is sometimes referred to as Fourmile Road. The standard route, which begins near the Leavick Ghost Town site, has an elevation of 12,000 feet at the road's gate, meaning we only needed to ascend 2,000 more feet.

Videos On Mt. Sherman
Views And Chatter At The Summit

Oh yes, it was windy.
Phil Ladden's Thoughts

You're never too old to catch mountain fever! :)

Click any image to view it at a larger size. A new window will open.
Phil Ladden
It was quite nippy at 7:15 a.m. at the start of our hike.

Phil was constantly looking at his Droid phone, as he posted messages on his Facebook and Twitter pages. My efforts to convince him to turn it off were fruitless. Phil is a blogger with a personal blog ( and another with his expertise about cruise vacations (

Rocky Mountains Colorado We were already above timberline at the start of our hike. Many old and abandoned mining structures remain in this area.
Mt. Sherman A spectacular view of Mt. Sherman.
Colorado Scenery Phil rested behind me. As we climbed, the Colorado Rocky Mountain scenery got better and better!
Colorado Hike We approached a snowy field on the side of the mountain's southern ridge. I love these photos of snow in the summer. On Facebook, I have a photo album titled "Snow At Ridiculous Times Of The Year." It is always my intention to shock my hot weather friends in places like Arizona, Texas, Georgia, Florida and elsewhere! :)

Remember this snowfield, for more photos are below with a story coming. :)

Rocky Mountain Scenery We reached the saddle of the mountain. Now it was only a matter of climbing Mt. Sherman's southern ridge.
Colorado Rocky Mountains

Colorado Rocky Mountains

Colorado Rocky Mountains

At this point, Phil was hiking extremely slow. I tried to stick around as much as I could, but my speed was much quicker. Thankfully, Phil didn't seem to mind and I did kept an eye on him.

As I hiked upward, I was continually tempted to snap photos of the stunning Rocky Mountain views unfolding. In the third photo, the large peak (right) is Mt. Sheridan (alt. 13,748 feet).

My other pages from this particular region:

  • Alma
  • Hoosier Pass (Summer)
  • Hoosier Pass (Winter)
  • Kite Lake
  • Two Points in Park County
  • Antero Reservoir
  • Horseshoe Mountain
  • Mt. Sherman, CO Mt. Sherman is a broad ridged mountain. The summit is the pointed knob left of center.
    Mt. Sherman
    On The Summit

    Phil and I made it. A nice picture of us with grand mountain scenery behind us.

    Colorado Rocky Mountains Facing south.
    Colorado Mountains

    Leadville, CO

    The westerly view.

    Top: The view of Iowa Gulch with Mt. Massive, Turquoise Lake and the town of Leadville in the background.

    Second: I zoomed-in for a better view of Turquoise Lake and Leadville. The rounded peak on the far right is Galena Mountain (alt. 12,985).

    Rocky Mountains Colorado Facing northwest with Dyer Mountain (alt. 13,855 feet) left of center.
    Colorado 14ers Facing north. In the immediate foreground is Gemini Peak (alt. 13,951 feet) with 14ers Mt. Democrat, Mt. Lincoln, Mt. Bross and Quandary Peak behind.
    Colorado Scenery Facing east. White Ridge (alt. 13,684 feet), located in the foreground on the right, is a mountain that piques my interest for another possible climb.

    Also note that way out there on the left is Pikes Peak, approximately 100 miles to the east.

    Colorado Rocky Mountains One photo of myself in a huge snowfield. Snow rocks the house!

    Some of my better 14er hikes:

  • La Plata Peak
  • Mt. Elbert
  • Huron Peak
  • Mt. Sneffels
  • Mt. Yale
  • South Elbert
  • We met so many friendly people at the summit. A group of Colorado University (Boulder) students arrived after us. This guy was drinking a beer at the summit to celebrate ... gotta love that! :)
    Phil Ladden On the way down, Phil rested and ate blackberries near the Hilltop Mine area.

    The Snowfield

    I have seen larger snowfields in my Colorado climbing career, but this was a fun one. Although the trail is covered in snow, hikers have created embedded foot prints for easier travel. Adjacent is a photo at the top, looking down.

    I made it across generally okay, with very little postholing. Occasionally a hiker would slide down the snowfield, which was amusing to watch.
    Phil came behind me. The poor guy - his knees were bothering him and he was exhausted. Also his shoes were not the greatest for anything remotely slippery. Phil trudged slowly, step by step.
    Inspired by the snow and Phil's accomplishment, I made a video which can be seen directly below... :)

    Extra Mountain Scenery

    Look at beautiful Horseshoe Mountain (elevation 13,898 feet), located south of Mt. Sherman. That circular cliff makes it a unique one. So pretty!

    Horseshoe Mountain, CO
    On the way toward Fairplay, we stopped for one last photo. We thought the view of Sheep Mountain (alt. 12,818 feet) and Lamb Mountain (alt. 12,438 feet) was worthy to pull out our cameras. So many mountains, so little time. You just can't beat living in Colorado's Rocky Mountains!

    Colorado Rocky Mountains

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