Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Redcloud Peak and Sunshine Peak

Redcloud Peak 4,277m (14,034 ft)
Sunshine Peak 4,267m (14,001 ft)
July 18, 2010
Trailhead: Silver Creek
Gain Elevation: 4250'
How you can go wrong with mountains that are red and sunny?
The colorful palette of the San Juan is on display.
We started from the Silver Creek trailhead at first light, following the trail as it ran along Silver Creek. There were a few stretches where the trail crossed talus fields, but for the most part, it was a good hiking trail.

Approximately two miles from the trailhead, we came upon rolling alpine meadows, forming a huge bowl, green and inviting

As we worked our way across the basin, the trail curved to the right and began to climb steeply toward the ridge at the top of the bowl. We soon left the greenery, as the alpine tundra gave way to talus and rocky slopes. As we reached the top of the bowl, we could see that we were on a ridge that dropped sharply away into a rocky bowl on the other side

We worked our way up the ridge, where the trail was pretty loose at times. Pea gravel and talus made the footing somewhat treacherous. The trail ran right along the top of the ridge for a while, they began to switch back and forth as it climbed higher

We reached the summit of Redcloud and took some photos, ate some lunch, and rested a bit. We noticed clouds were starting to gather to the south, so we decided to high-tail it for Sunshine Peak
As we worked our way across the saddle, the clouds continued to gather. The trail was strewn with talus, and as it began climbing steeply toward Sunshine, the footing was very loose. By the time we reached the summit of Sunshine Peak, the weather was worsening.


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