Peak:  Mt. Bancroft (13er)
 Route:  Berthoud Pass to Loch Lomond
 Range:  Front
 Posted By:  Carl_Healy
 Date of Info:  05/28/2022
 Date Posted:  05/28/2022
Details

Shuttle hiked across the Continental Divide from Berthoud Pass (Colorado Mines Peak) to Loch Lomond (Mt. Bancroft). For conditions between the other peaks see those respective updates. A note for all legs is that we carried spikes, snowshoes, crampons, and ice axes the whole way but never *really* needed them. Also gnarly cornices everywhere, and weather was surprisingly nice: temps in the 40s and winds often below 10 MPH until at least Parry Peak.
The last leg of today's journey, Parry Peak A to Bancroft and down the Southeast Ridge to the Loch Lomond Trailhead, is where the excitement began. First a lot of snow on Parry Peak summit but seemingly no cornices to worry about, at least the way we went. A good bit of postholing, or at least plunge stepping, most of the ridge down. On particularly un-fun section was a 30 deg portion of the ridge with plenty of boulders and talus and deep snow (trapdoors abounded). Closer to the Loch Lomond reservoir we found an old 4WD road but descending to the reservoir proper the road disappeared in a slope of steep wet snow. Tried our best to avoid that but all below the ridge and around the reservoir was pretty deep snow with short trees and willows. We still didn't opt to put snowshoes on as there were dry sections here and there. On the road from the reservoir the snow was deep but there was enough of a boot pack that we didn't have any real postholing problems (even at 2 PM). Between the first and second seasonal closure gates the road dried up and we no longer had any problems.



Photos (click for slideshow):
#1) Looking down ridge between Parry Peak A and Mt. Bancroft#2) Looking back at Parry Peak A on the Way to Bancroft#3) Approaching Mt. Bancroft Summit#4) Looking back up Bancroft while descending Southeast Ridge#5) Looking down Bancrofts Southeast Ridge#6) Approaching some deep snow fields near the start of an old 4WD road#7#8) Deep snow on road shortly after Loch Lomond#9


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