Peak(s):  "Magdalene Mtn"  -  13,762 feet
PT 13,517 A  -  13,517 feet
"Pear Pk"  -  13,462 feet
Date Posted:  11/03/2014
Date Climbed:   10/30/2014
Author:  Steve Knapp
 Trick or Treat - Clohesy Lake 13ers   

14 miles RT, 6400' gain
From Clohesy Lake TH (10,920')

I didn't think I'd get to these peaks this year, but with fine Indian summer weather holding into late October I figured it was as good a time as any. Generally I prefer to do long ridge runs in the drier fall months. Also, the creek crossing required to get a vehicle up to Clohesy Lake would be much easier in the fall.

I arrived at the trailhead about 9:30 am, later than I'd hoped for with a 3.5 hour drive from Denver. It was nice to sleep in my own warm bed instead of camping at the 20 degree trailhead, but that cost me later in the day. The Clear Creek crossing at Rockdale was easy this time of year, and thankfully not iced up yet either. The road up from the creek is decent, only a couple rough spots to worry about in my 4Runner. I parked in the last meadow, blocked from going further by a huge puddle at least a foot deep with a couple inches of ice on it. After starting through it, breaking through the ice and then stopping I quickly reversed out of it. Not a great place to get stuck, nobody around to pull me back out.

I hiked up the road to the wilderness boundary gate and continued up the Pear Lake trail a couple miles to about 11,400'. I bushwhacked up to treeline then up the steep rocky slope to the east ridge of 13517. The terrain eased there and it was an easy talus climb to the south ridge of 13517. The south ridge was nice, and soon I was on the first peak of the day. Great views of Huron, N Apostle, and Ice Mtn. And a very long way to Magdalene which I hoped to reach later in the day.

13517 East Buttress:

13220 from below:

13517 East Ridge:

13517 South Ridge (summit far left):

North Apostle (R) and Ice Mtn (L):

While only a couple miles away, the ridge to Pear Peak is very time consuming. Along the way I passed over soft ranked 13220. Whenever the ridge got difficult it could be bypassed on the right (S/SW side) which thankfully was snow free. The rock quality is poor in spots on this ridge, further slowing me down. It was 3pm when I reached Pear, the sun already getting lower in the western sky.

Long ridge to Pear Peak with 13220 in the way:

The long east and north ridge descent of Pear was actually quite fun. Much better rock most of the way, but still slow travelling. At 4:30 I finally got to the pass where the trail passes over from connecting Clohesy to Pear Lake. Left turn and I'd be out in no time. But there was another peak to do. I didn't want to leave Magdalene unclimbed with this much invested already.

I crossed the basin above Pear Lake. Lots of talus, slow travelling. Up to the Emerald/Magdalene saddle, down steep scree to Missouri basin. Silver King lake was frozen, and the peak 1,100 feet above looked chilly in the twilight. I found the trail leading up to the north ridge, mostly buried in snow. The north ridge went quickly but the sun set along the way. Soon I was on the summit as darkness fell, alone in the Sawatch with a couple basins and 5.5 miles separating me from my vehicle. With GPS, two headlamps, and a half moon it was a great place to be. Just don't get hurt.

Pear Lake starting to freeze:

Magdalene on the right as I entered Missouri Basin:

Harvard is King of this land:

Frozen Silver King Lake with Magdalene above:


It was a long trek back to the car in the cold clear night air. It's hard to pick the best line without being able to see the big picture. I did not enjoy the climb back up the Emerald saddle or the basin above Pear Lake in the dark. But the downhill trail was welcome after cresting the divide below Pear Peak. My two headlamps had faded batteries in the frigid air and I ended up using the LED light on my phone which was nicely bright for the last couple miles.

What a great day, it was nice to string these three together late in the season just before the winter snows bury them for about seven months.

My GPS Tracks on Google Maps (made from a .GPX file upload):

Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13

Comments or Questions
11/03/2014 18:52
fine outing here but you'll probably be the only person to ever link these peaks as such. no offense i guess

11/03/2014 21:18
I've been looking at these for a while, drawing plenty of lines on a map. Good to see some more beta!

Kevin Baker
huge day
11/04/2014 03:15
Another big Steve Knapp day! That is some rough terrain to navigate for sure. It took me 3 trips to get all of those peaks because I didn't have the motivation to combo them all. Good work!

So that’s what this peak is named!
11/20/2014 21:20
Magdalene was a lonely summit from Pine Creek 10 years ago! Nice day for a multi–basin trip, those are some hard days!

Great Trek
08/25/2017 20:41
Saw this area from Brown's Pass, that looks like a really good hike. Thanks for posting this report. Wow.

LED flashlights are kind of a hobby, feel free to pm me, might be able to help you with lights for late hiking.

   Not registered?

Caution: The information contained in this report may not be accurate and should not be the only resource used in preparation for your climb. Failure to have the necessary experience, physical conditioning, supplies or equipment can result in injury or death. and the author(s) of this report provide no warranties, either express or implied, that the information provided is accurate or reliable. By using the information provided, you agree to indemnify and hold harmless and the report author(s) with respect to any claims and demands against them, including any attorney fees and expenses. Please read the Safety and Disclaimer pages for more information.

Please respect private property: supports the rights of private landowners to determine how and by whom their land will be used. In Colorado, it is your responsibility to determine if land is private and to obtain the appropriate permission before entering the property.

© 2022®, 14ers Inc.