Peak:  Niagara Peak (13er)
 Route:  Northeast Face
 Range:  San Juan
 Posted By:  CheapCigarMan
 Date of Info:  05/28/2022
 Date Posted:  05/31/2022
Details

Made it up Grouse-Burns Gulch 4WD road to about 11,200' before hitting the first impassable snow drift. About 5 more after that. Clear morning. The sky hazed up later that morning into a weird hazy reddish color. Then windy and cloudy on the descent. No snowshoes, very firm and consolidated snow. Dave Cooper's Northeast Face took a minute for me to figure out. Specifically which gully he was referring to. As he mentions you can't see this from the road. But once you are in the upper basin as you approach the Jones / Niagara saddle it's apparent. But it doesn't look like much, which was a little confusing for me. As you see all of Niagara's more impressive gullies this one is small and tame. Though, I did not encounter any, there is evidence of rock fall in the gully. Once out of the gully it dog leg's right which parallels it's East Ridge route. Used crampons and ice axe. Snow was sun cupped. Most extreme sun cupping I've seen. Beautiful formations. Beautiful views of the San Juans with RGP and Chicago Basin next door calling your name. With all the talk on ice axes I thought I'd get and post my first ice axe selfie taken just a few feet below the summit.


Photos (click for slideshow):
#1) Niagara#2) Not these gullies#3) Gully seen left#4) Northeast Gully#5) Suncupped#6) Ice Axe near summit#7) Chicago Basin#8) Jones


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