Photos Of Our Hike - Yankee Boy Basin And The Surrounding San Juan Mountains
Mt. Sneffels! This was my tenth summiting of a Colorado "14er" and what a memorable adventure it was.
I was itching to do something in southwest Colorado's San Juan Mountains and the constant view
of Mt. Sneffels from the Dallas Divide area
(enroute to Telluride usually) was just too much.
Special thanks to 14ers.com and their
(Mt. Sneffels Page)
for helpful trail information and photos. Our climb of this mountain
reminded me of the importance of safety and humility for those attempting
to reach these lofty summits. Colorado's mountains deserve the utmost
respect and reverence as peaks that can quite easily thwart humanity's plans to hike them.
As an example, the loose scree and unstable larger-sized rocks in the lower large gully and upper gully on the
standard route were particularly dangerous. I witnessed a few instances of small
rocks (with the largest rock being the size of football) tumbling down, gaining momentum and speed, and
potentially causing serious injury or death to those in its pathway.
If there is a "next time" with hiking Mt. Sneffels, speaking for myself,
I would consider an alternative route or at least wear a helmet on the standard route.
Lastly, I must give a special thanks to Sgt. Jay Wilson in Telluride.
His companionship on the trail greatly encouraged me and it was his high clearance,
4-wheel drive vehicle that made it to the trailhead to Yankee Boy Basin. Warm regards
to the entire Wilson family, whom I camped with at the Atlas Mill Campground
and enjoyed some nice meals with in Ouray.
Oh and shame on my local friends who either never have heard
of this mountain or have called it "Mt. Sniffles" repeatedly. C'mon people! :p) Enjoy the photos, my friends!
Photos of Mt. Sneffels From The Dallas Divide Area
- Above are two photos of Mt. Sneffels as seen from Colorado State Highway 62 between Ridgway and Placerville,
near Dallas Divide.
(Second photo: Mt. Sneffels is located on the right during an October 2005 morning.)
The Hike Up To Mt. Sneffels
Click any image to view it at a larger size. A new window will open.
August 20, 2007 - Jay and I woke up at 5 a.m. at the
Atlas Mill Campground (temperature: 43 degrees) and arrived at the trailhead in Yankee Boy Basin at 6:15 a.m.
Looking to the east, the sun was just beginning to rise. The large peak
in the left-center is Potosi Peak,
alt. 13,786 feet.
The large lower gully.
TOP: At the top of the lower gully, looking back down into Yankee Boy Basin.
Gilpin Peak (alt. 13,594 feet) is the tall peak front and center.
BOTTOM: After a few steps into the second and upper gully, I turned back to photograph the
ridge point of the lower gully.
Those are some unnamed 13,000+ peaks in the foreground with what I'm fairly
sure is Cirque Mountain (alt. 13,886) out there to the left a bit.
Again, visit 14ers.com's
Mt. Sneffels Page if you're searching for good
information on this standard route.
Four photos of the upper gully.
The top photo was taken from the lower ridge. The bottom three are facing down
the gully as I slowly made my way up.
Jay poses near the top of this V-shaped notch below the summit.
There is some exposure and a vertical drop to the left that, while not necessarily too dangerous,
definitely was an anxiety producer. ;)
Views From The Summit Of Mt. Sneffels
Arrival at the summit!
Adjacent are token photos of each of us, in which you might recognize the
background as similar scenery to some Colorado wall posters and postcards. The scenery is stunning up there!
Alright, I snapped a whole bunch of photos at the summit turning counterclockwise.
Adjacent are views of Gilpin Peak, Stoney Mountain (inside the valley), Yankee Boy Basin and a whole bunch of jagged mountains looking out towards Telluride's valley, Silverton, etc.
The sun was in the east, the direction of these photos, which made things tricky.
I captured the remaining peaks east of the Sneffels range with peak after peak in the background.
A short one minute video of us on Mt Sneffels...
Facing east and looking down, note the gray-shaded rock slide that looks almost like lava or a form of liquid. The terrain of these mountains,
including the lower gully of the standard route, have this effect.
Again folks, be careful out there; Even if there isn't a risk of snow-based avalanches,
there are compelling reasons as seen in the photo to be alert to the possibility of rock slides.
The northerly view included the town of Ridgway and Ridgway State Park (left) and the Dallas Divide area (right).
The top two photos include various peaks
west of Mt. Sneffels including the Blue Lakes west of Blue Lakes Pass.
BOTTOM: A zoom-in photo of the Mt. Wilson group.
One more zoom-in photo that includes Mountain Village's ski runs on the right.
Inside that valley just over those peaks in the foreground sits the
town of Telluride.